The Silent Question: Meditating in the Stillness of Not Knowing

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Overview

In The Silent Question, Packer provides fresh insights on using the experiences of life that are raw, messy, painful, and sometimes full of laughter, to open a way to compassion. She urges us to let go of our thoughts and to sit "in the stillness of not knowing" in order to reflect upon the essential question of who we are. Packer encourages us to discover that life, energy, and insight come from the questioning, the looking, the listening.
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The Silent Question: Meditating in the Stillness of Not-Knowing

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Overview

In The Silent Question, Packer provides fresh insights on using the experiences of life that are raw, messy, painful, and sometimes full of laughter, to open a way to compassion. She urges us to let go of our thoughts and to sit "in the stillness of not knowing" in order to reflect upon the essential question of who we are. Packer encourages us to discover that life, energy, and insight come from the questioning, the looking, the listening.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Packer has a real gift for expressing complicated concepts in single yet personal anecdotes. . . . That, in itsef, makes The Silent Question a healing and reassuring book."—Yoga Journal

"This is a rare and remarkable book. It embodies mindfulness and the fruits of mindfulness practice in their most spacious yet precise and grounded manifestations. And most remarkably, it does it through free and easy dialogue and inquiry between teacher and students. Anyone can enter here, and benefit hugely."—Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Coming to Our Senses

“‘Beginner's mind,’ ‘don’t know mind,’ ‘not knowing,’ are familiar terms for those of us who practice some form of awareness meditation. Toni Packer in simple, clear, and direct language, does a magnificent job of bringing these important concepts to life. Again and again we are brought into her way of coming to a fresh and clear mind, a mind able to see and act with wisdom and kindness. An invaluable guide for all meditators.”—Larry Rosenberg, author of Breath by Breath and Living in the Light of Death

“Toni Packer is a treasure. With a deep and demanding inquiry of a Zen master, she invites us back to mystery and wonder, to rediscover the innocence and wholeness that is our own true nature.”—Jack Kornfield, author of A Path with Heart

"Toni's voice these days comes from a space of absolute transparency. It touches us, stops our galloping minds mid-stride. We breathe, with relief and gratitude. Then, only silence."—Lenore Friedman, author of Meetings with Remarkable Women

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781590304105
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/13/2007
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 860,164
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Toni Packer began studying Zen at the Rochester Zen Center in 1967 with Roshi Philip Kapleau (author of The Three Pillars of Zen). She teaches and leads retreats at Springwater Center in Springwater, New York.
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Table of Contents


To the Reader     xi
Acknowledgments     xiii
Introduction     xv
This Free and Open "Work"
Staying Present: An Interview with Toni Packer   Geoff Swaebe     3
Fear of Silence     11
Effortlessness     18
Tying Rocks to Clouds: An Interview with Toni Packer   William Elliott     22
Is Mindfulness the Same as Awareness?     33
Can Our Problems Be Figured Out?     38
Firewood Does Not Turn into Ashes: An Interview with Toni Packer   Craig Hamilton     45
This "Me" and Who I Am
About Ego     51
Am I My Body?     55
Being Oneself     60
Loneliness     64
Expectation     69
My Identity     74
About Creativity     76
Who Decides?     79
This War and Peace Between Us
Love and Attachment: Is Attachment Inevitable?     85
Two Responses to September 11     90
Feeling Separate, Living Together     94
Togetherness     100
Honesty     105
Despair     108
Judgment: Is There Good and Bad?     116
This Illness, Pain, and Death
A Beautiful Mind     127
What Is Dying?     142
Helping Those in Pain     145
Illness and the Self     148
Letter to a Deceased Friend     151
Suffering and Awareness: An Interview with Toni Packer   Geoff Swaebe     154
This Living, Loving Wonder
What Energizes My Life?     161
Is Enlightenment a Myth?     164
The Observer Is the Observed     166
Has Toni Packer Been Totally Transformed?     169
Is This All There Is?     177
Credits     183
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2008

    the fulfillment of spiritual pursuit

    Toni, as an author, has always been rather Taoist, in my opinion. With all her Zen intensity mixed with a serenity that goes even beyond the Quaker tradition with which I am familiar, she has the whole thing down to silent koan, even a genjo koan- which means the koan or seed that is already here in the average moment now of everyday life. Unlike this review (wink), her book lacks obscure references and presents simple transcripts of exchanges on being conscious, curious, and alive in the face of even the most unusual surprises of everyday life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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