Advice and encouragement from a leading young spiritual teacher on how to live with compassion, ethical principles, and bravery in the face of the global challenges facing humanity.
In his first major book, the Karmapa, a charismatic 28-year-old emerging leader of Tibetan Buddhism, offers heartfelt advice on how to live with integrity in the modern world. These teachings arose from the questions of sixteen college seniors who spent a month meeting and talking with the Karmapa about their concerns about the world and their own futures.
"This is not a book about Buddhism. I don't want to talk about Buddhist theory or practice, but about our experience of life. The shared ground we all meet on is our shared concern about our lives and our world, rather than philosophical views. On that ground, we can meet as friends."from the Introduction
Sixteen American college students spent a month in India with His Holiness the Seventeenth Karmapa. Together, they discussed topics ranging from food justice to gender identities to sustainable compassion. The Karmapa's teachings in this book are the product of those meetings.
For those who wish to take up its challenge, this book can serve as a guide to being a friend to this planet and to all of us who share it. The Karmapa describes how to see the world as a global community, in which people are linked by their shared concerns for humanityand their wish to bring about real change. While acknowledging the magnitude of this undertaking, the Karmapa shows us how to go about it, using the inner resources we have already.
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About the Author
THE KARMAPA is one of the highest ranking lamas in Tibetan Buddhism and is the leader of Tibetan Buddhism’s oldest reincarnation lineage. The present incarnation, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, is the seventeenth in this line. Since his escape from Chinese-occupied Tibet at the age of fourteen, he has emerged as an international Buddhist leader and environmental activist. He lives in Dharamsala, India, just a short distance from his mentor, His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Table of Contents
Foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama vii
Editors' Preface ix
Editors' Introduction xv
1 Our Shared Ground 1
2 A Meaningful Life: Anything Is Possible 4
3 Healthy Relationships: Orienting Ourselves toward Others 18
4 Gender Identities: It's Ail in the Mind 39
5 Consumerism and Greed: Contentment Is the Best Wealth 53
6 Social Action: Caring for All 72
7 Environmental Protection: Cultivating New Feelings for the Earth 87
8 Food Justice: Healing the Cycles of Hunger and Harm 105
9 Conflict Resolution: Anger Is the Problem 125
10 Spiritual Paths: Integrating Life and Spirituality 143
11 Sustainable Compassion: Grounding Ourselves in Courage and Joy 160
12 Living the Teachings 175
Editors Acknowledgments 185
A Biography of His Holiness the Karmapa 187
Editors' and Translators' Biographies 191