Friday, September 08, 2006

Have your forgotten?

No, I haven't forgotten the book meme. I usually avoid memes. (Don't believe me? Check the whole blog! hehe) This one I am inclined to do. Maybe because it would involve one of my favorite topics, Buddhist Teachings. Like I stated in a previous post, I read mostly Buddhist materials. So, some of you might not find this interesting. Oh yeah, thanks Ken and Knit Picking for tagging! :-P

1. One book that changed your life: I have to give two answers. There was a little Chinese book on the introduction of the philosophies of "Mind Only" Buddhist tradition. The teaching broke down human experiences layer by layer. It is my nature to get to the bottom of things so it suited me really well. I started to look deeper within myself and was able to find sustainable peace for quite some time. Unfortunately I didn't keep up the practice. But I gained a clearer picture of what it meant to practice "the ending of suffering & stress." This also started me searching for a temple that focus on mediation.

Then a few years ago I went to a local Thai Forest Tradition Temple to be a monk for seven days (I got picture to prove it), I took along "The First Discourse of the Buddha" by Ven. Rewata Dhamma. He gave a clear teaching of the Four Noble Truths and the steps of Buddhist meditation practice. With the book and the opportunity to practice sincerely, I was able to say that I finally understood the path. I left the temple with a clear direction. I also realized that I "knew" very little. Meaning that I lacked direct experiences. I could not claim that I "knew" without "seeing". I was humbled. Practice is the path. And I am walking surely on the path again.

2. One book that you've read more than once: "Venerable Acariya Mun Bhuridatta Thera - A Spiritual Biography" by Acariya Maha Boowa. Ven. Mun did not write a biography himself. Using stories told my his students, Ven. Maha Boowa was able to put together his life story. It gives a good picture of the practice of a forest monk. It contains some stories that usually do not get passed beyond the monks' circle, which makes it a very interesting read. But the important part is how it shows Ven. Mun as a fine example for Buddhist practictioners. He's the founder of the Thai Forest Tradition after all.

3. One book you'd want on a desert island: Oh, I dunno. Something like "How to Build a Boat"? I would prabably spend more time meditating. Hmmm... Maybe something like "How to Build a Hut"? I will want a hut to meditate in. :-)

4. One book that made you laugh: Well... considering the kind of books that I've been reading in recent years, I can't think of any. LOL (<--- does that count?) But, I did get a book called "Who Ordered This Truckload of Dung?: Inspiring Stories for Welcoming Life's Difficulties" by Ajahn Brahm. I haven't read it. But I have listened to Ajahn Brahm's audio talks. Ajahn Brahm is a British monk in Australia. He is very clear and super funny. I imagine that the book would be very funny and inspirational too. Just look at the book title!

5. One book that made you cry: This is a tough one. Nothing recent. Maybe "The Heritage of Hastur", a Darkover novel by Marion Zimmer Bradley, with a big question mark. I read this book 20 years ago. Not sure if I cried. But the Darkover series sure have a lot of tortured souls in them.

6. One book that you wish had been written: Another tough one for me. I think there are enough written down. People just have to want to read it. Also, there are stuff that need to be experienced and not read about.

7. One book you wish had never been written: Any book that distorts truth that eventually causes harm to people.

8. One book you're currently reading: "Patipada: Venerable Acariya Mun's Path of Practice" by Acariya Maha Boowa. Deeper exploration of Ven. Acariya Mun's practice. I've been reading this book on and off.
(Off at the moment.) Slowly digesting the information.

9. One book you've been meaning to read:
"The Alden Amos Big Book of Handspinning". I have taken it off the bookshelf since my last post, and will start reading it soon. People are tired of me asking spinning questions. LOL

10. Tag 6 people: Well, since I don't like to do memes, I will not push this on anyone. But if you want to, do it, and consider yourself tagged! :-)

1 comment:

gerald said...

Thanks for taking the time to share this insightful informatioin about reading and yourself. I've reread mine and find that it was a bit surprising that I was unwilling to share as much as I would have expected.