Knee Deep in Grace: The Extraordinary Life and Teaching of Dipa Ma

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A tiny Indian woman leading an inconspicuous life in Calcutta profoundly influenced the evolution and teaching of Buddhist meditation practice in America. Knee Deep in Grace presents the life story of Dipa Ma Barua, along with the essential spiritual teachings that make her a towering figure in contemporary Buddhism. While she experienced fame in her lifetime and had a following of many Burmese, Indian, and American students, she was like the women saints of the Vedas, "remarkable women...from the dawn of ...
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Overview

A tiny Indian woman leading an inconspicuous life in Calcutta profoundly influenced the evolution and teaching of Buddhist meditation practice in America. Knee Deep in Grace presents the life story of Dipa Ma Barua, along with the essential spiritual teachings that make her a towering figure in contemporary Buddhism. While she experienced fame in her lifetime and had a following of many Burmese, Indian, and American students, she was like the women saints of the Vedas, "remarkable women...from the dawn of history...who achieved realization while cleaning their homes and raising their children" ("Daughters of the Goddess, Women Saints of India"). Dipa Ma was remarkable in her ordinariness, astounding in her natural grounding in the reality of the present moment.

Dipa Ma was a primary teacher of Sharon Salzberg, Jack Kornfield, and Joseph Goldstein, who have been among the most influential "importers" of Buddhism to America. Through the centers they founded and the teachers trained in them (the author among them), the example and teaching of Dipa Ma reach multitudes.

Knee Deep in Grace is filled with intimate stories collected over a period of ten years, not only from prominent meditation teachers in the West but from Dipa Ma's daughter and grandson and her Calcutta students. Dipa Ma addressed her teaching to ordinary people in her apartment complex and her extended family, and her iconoclastic style of daily life "immersion" practice brought many of her students to awakening. And as this book testifies, her old students as well as new ones find that Dipa Ma continues to guide and inspire their meditation practice.

Author Biography: Amy Schmidt is a resident teacher at the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA. She has practiced vipassana meditation for nineteen years. For the past five years, she has also practiced Centering Prayer and attends Contemplative Outreach retreats at Snomass Monastery (Trappist) in CO, under the guidance of Father Thomas Keating. Amy is a co-founder of Southwest Sangha, a contemplative practice self-retreat center in southern NM.

A licensed clinical social worker with twenty years of experience in the field of aging, Amy worked as a research analyst at the University of Washington School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, and is co-author of the manual Understanding Alzheimer's: A Guide for Families, Friends, and Health Care Providers. She currently teaches for the Lineage Project, a program offering meditation classes to incarcerated and paroled teens in NYC.

Amy is a cartoonist for the book Buddha Laughing and a contributing author to Women's Buddhism, Buddhism's Women.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780963078469
  • Publisher: Present Perfect Books
  • Publication date: 11/28/2002
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 5.56 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.34 (d)

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