Unlimiting Mind: The Radically Experiential Psychology of Buddhism

Overview

Both broad and deep, this eye-opening book is one of the best available overviews of the radical psychological teachings underlying the Buddhist approach to freedom and peace. Sophisticated without being daunting, brilliantly clear without becoming simplistic, Andrew Olendzki's writing is filled with rich phrases, remarkable images, and the fruits of decades of careful thought. Grounded in profound scholarship, psychological sophistication, and many years of teaching and personal practice, this much-anticipated ...
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Unlimiting Mind: The Radically Experiential Psychology of Buddhism

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Overview

Both broad and deep, this eye-opening book is one of the best available overviews of the radical psychological teachings underlying the Buddhist approach to freedom and peace. Sophisticated without being daunting, brilliantly clear without becoming simplistic, Andrew Olendzki's writing is filled with rich phrases, remarkable images, and the fruits of decades of careful thought. Grounded in profound scholarship, psychological sophistication, and many years of teaching and personal practice, this much-anticipated collection of essays will appeal to anyone looking to gain a richer understanding of Buddhism's experiential tools for exploring the inner world. In Unlimiting Mind, Olendzki provokes fresh and familiar reflections on core Buddhist teachings.
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Editorial Reviews

David R. Loy
"An excellent and very accessible introduction to Buddhist psychology. Olendzki's presentation of the Abhidhamma is particularly helpful and informative."
Stephen Batchelor
"A wonderful collection. These thoughtful and insightful reflections on the Buddha's teachings will appeal to scholars and practitioners alike."
Christopher K. Germer
"This book has the power to change how you see yourself and the world. It's a remarkable read for teachers, counselors, psychologists, philosophers--anyone concerned with the human condition."
Joseph Goldstein
"Unlimiting Mind is a rare treat. Andrew Olendzki brings a unique and often brilliant perspective to core Buddhist teachings. He enlarges our understanding of basic principles and raises sometimes unsettling questions about familiar assumptions. This book is an excellent introduction to Buddhism as well as an enlightening jolt to experienced practitioners. Highly recommended."
John Peacock
"I cannot recommend this book strongly enough. Unlimiting Mind is one of the most intelligent collections of articles on Buddhism that I have read for a very long time. An impressive work that shows the Buddha to be not only the first 'psychologist' but an extremely radical thinker."
From the Publisher

"An excellent and very accessible introduction to Buddhist psychology. Olendzki's presentation of the Abhidhamma is particularly helpful and informative."—David R. Loy, author of Money, Sex, War, Karma and The World is Made of Stories

"A wonderful collection. These thoughtful and insightful reflections on the Buddha's teachings will appeal to scholars and practitioners alike."—Stephen Batchelor, author of Buddhism without Beliefs

"This book has the power to change how you see yourself and the world. It's a remarkable read for teachers, counselors, psychologists, philosophers—anyone concerned with the human condition."—Christopher K. Germer, PhD author of The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion and Mindfulness and Psychotherepy

"Unlimiting Mind is a rare treat. Andrew Olendzki brings a unique and often brilliant perspective to core Buddhist teachings. He enlarges our understanding of basic principles and raises sometimes unsettling questions about familiar assumptions. This book is an excellent introduction to Buddhism as well as an enlightening jolt to experienced practitioners. Highly recommended."—Joseph Goldstein, author of One Dharma: The Emerging Western Buddhism and A Heart Full of Peace

“I cannot recommend this book strongly enough. Unlimiting Mind is one of the most intelligent collections of articles on Buddhism that I have read for a very long time. An impressive work that shows the Buddha to be not only the first 'psychologist' but an extremely radical thinker.” —John Peacock, Oxford Mindfulness Centre

Publishers Weekly
Olendzki, executive director of the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies and editor of a Buddhist journal, has written a dense book on Buddhist psychology. The book consists of short essays grouped by themes; many of the essays first appeared elsewhere. This gives the book a bit of a sound-bite feel; no one idea is developed for very long, so the reader, given the difficulty of the material, must, like a good Buddhist, pay attention. Olendzki is himself a close reader of Buddhist texts and clearly grounds his reasoning in those texts. His academic prose—use of passive voice, Latinate words—unfortunately compounds the difficulty of comprehension (“If there is no regarding of phenomena as 'mine' then the self who suffers from attachment to phenomena is not constructed”). This is not for the nightstand Buddhist; readers will require some knowledge of the Buddhist understanding of how the mind works, and they will also need some patience with highly abstract prose. (Apr.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780861716203
  • Publisher: Wisdom Publications MA
  • Publication date: 4/20/2010
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 420,766
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Andrew Olendzki, PhD, was trained in Buddhist Studies at Lancaster University in England, as well as at Harvard and the University of Sri Lanka. The former executive director of the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) and of the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies (BCBS) in Barre, Massachusetts, and executive editor of the Insight Journal, he is now senior scholar at BCBS.
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 The Bigger Picture

What the Buddha Taught 21

An Organic Spirituality 25

The Non-Pursuit of Happiness 29

The Post-Copernican Revolution 33

2 Caring for the World

Caring for Each Other 39

Healing the Wounds of the World 43

War and Peace 47

Removing the Thorn 51

Burning Alive 55

3 Constructing Reality

Mind and Brain 61

This Fathom-Long Carcass 65

Making the Best of It 69

Unreal Imagination Exists 73

In the Blink of an Eye 77

4 The Practice

One Thing at a Time 83

Here and Now 87

Tug of War 91

Changing Your Mind 95

Calm in the Face of Anger 99

5 Understanding the Teachings

Interconnected ... Or Not? 105

Interdependence 109

Beyond Proliferation: Papanca 113

Disgusted with Dharma? 117

6 Self and Non-Self

Appearance and Reality 123

Keeping Your Balance 127

Self Is a Verb 131

This World Is Not Yours 135

No Essence 139

7 Karma

Karma in Action 145

Where the Action is 149

Whose Life Is This, Anyway? 153

Homo Sophiens 157

8 The Emergence of Mindfulness

An Abhidhamma Perspective 163

Notes 177

Acknowledgments 181

Index 183

About the Author 191

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