How to Wake Up: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide to Navigating Joy and Sorrow

How to Wake Up: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide to Navigating Joy and Sorrow

by Toni Bernhard


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781614290568
Publisher: Wisdom Publications MA
Publication date: 08/27/2013
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 196,485
Product dimensions: 9.10(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Toni Bernhard is the author of the award-winning How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and their Caregivers and How to Wake Up: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide to Navigating Joy and Sorrow. Until forced to retire due to illness, Toni was a law professor at the University of California-Davis, serving six years as the dean of students. She has been a practicing Buddhist for over 20 years. Her blog, "Turning Straw Into Gold" is hosted on the website of Psychology Today. She can be found online at

Table of Contents

Introduction: Ten Thousand Joys, Ten Thousand Sorrows 1

Cultivating Wisdom

1 Change, Change, Change 9

2 Self as Ever-Shifting Flow 19

3 Can't Get No Satisfaction 27

4 Want/Don Want: The Unquenchable Thirst 35

5 Looking More Deeply at Suffering and Dissatisfaction 47

6 Five Habits of Mind that Are Obstacles to Waking Up 57

Cultivating Mindfulness

7 The Mindfulness Path 75

8 Tools for Sharpening Your Mindfulness Skills 85

9 From Multiple Hindrance Attack to Five-Minute Mindfulness 95

10 Choiceless Awareness 103

11 Awakening to the Body through Mindfulness 113

12 Death Awareness Practice 121

Cultivating an Open Heart: Kindness, Compassion, Appreciative Joy, and Equanimity

13 The Psychological States of Awakened Beings 133

14 To Cultivate an Open Heart, Set Aside Judging 149

15 Kindness and Friendliness 159

16 Compassion: Start with Yourself 167

17 Appreciative Joy: An Antidote to Envy and Resentment 181

18 Equanimity: Fully Engaging This Life as It Is 187

19 Intentionally Turning Your Mind to the Sublime States 199

In the End…

20 Onward Down the Path 209

Acknowledgments 213

Bibliography 217

Index 219

About the Author 229

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“This is a book for everyone.”—Alida Brill, Psychology Today and author of Dancing at the River's Edge

“A fresh and articulate voice interpreting ancient wisdom for our modern times.”—Sylvia Boorstein

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How to Wake Up: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide to Navigating Joy and Sorrow 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved Toni Bernhard's first book so much that I lectured myself not to expect too much from this one, feeling that my expectations might be too high. But she's done it again -- given readers a wise and gentle guide to navigating life on life's terms, with all its normal joys and sorrows. "How to Wake Up" offers clear, easily understood explanations of the Buddha's core teachings on wisdom, mindfulness, and open-heartedness, along with practical suggestions for putting them to use. This is no trendy, "Buddhism Lite" self-help book. The language may be unpretentious, but it's clearly anchored in deep knowledge and understanding. An experienced teacher, Bernhard illustrates each concept with common-sense examples from her own life, examples that anyone can relate to. Each chapter includes gentle, practical suggestions for how the reader can experiment with using these ideas in everyday life. Although not a newcomer to Buddhism, I found myself enthusiastically highlighting phrases and paragraphs I want to refer back to, and I enjoyed practicing each of the suggested exercises from chapter to chapter. They were easy to do, and gave me fresh perspective on meeting life's daily bumps and challenges with equanimity. This book will join the small number of favorites I keep on my nightstand for easy reference. It's easily the best introduction to Buddhist principles I've ever read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How To Wake Up is a great book. Toni's beautiful writing style gently guides readers on how to re-evaluate how their thoughts guide their emotions. Similar in style to her first book, How To Be Sick, Toni uses stories from her personal life to show how she has learned to approach her own struggles differently from practices she has learned through many years of Buddhist practice. A great read for anyone looking to gain a healthier approach toward life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago