AJAHN SUMEDHO THE WAY IT IS PDF

He ordained as a bhikkhu Buddhist monk in May the following year. In , he helped to establish and became the first abbot of the International Forest Monastery, Wat Pa Nanachat in northeast Thailand founded by Ajahn Chah for training his non-Thai students. After observing a keen interest in Buddhism among Westerners, Ajahn Chah encouraged Ajahn Sumedho to remain in England for the purpose of establishing a branch monastery in the UK. Ajahn Sumedho was granted authority to ordain others as monks shortly after he established Cittaviveka Forest Monastery.

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It is worth noting here that Ajahn Sumedho did not write this book - he spoke it, for it has been edited from spontaneous talks given by him prior to its original publication n Not that this detracts from the quality of the teachings at all, for they contain an organic flow that is typical of an accomplished speaker such as the ajahn.

He emphasizes that these teachings are not dogmas to become attached to, but rather insights to reflect upon, to experience. The Buddhist premise is that by reflecting, by contemplating, and understanding that common human experience, we can transcend all the mental delusions that create human suffering.

And, in doing so, we take the initial step towards nirvana, for suffering is the motivation to seek enlightenment in the first place. A body is subject to pain, to pleasure, to heat, and cold; it gets old and the senses fade; it has illnesses, and then it dies. And we all know this, that death s waiting there for us all. Death is here. The latter is the fourth noble truth of the path, or way to enlightenment, which will not be enunciated here go buy the book!

Mindfulness of the breath is a traditional Buddhist meditation, but Ajahn Sumedho is also an innovator in these matters, as with his teachings on Noticing Space: "Our minds tend to get caught up with thoughts of attraction or aversion to objects, but the space around this thoughts is not attractive or repulsive.

The space around an attractive thought and a repulsive thought is not different, is it? Concentrating on the space between thoughts, we become less caught up in our preferences concerning the thoughts. So if you find that an obsessive thought of guilt, self-pity, or passion keeps coming up, then work with it in this way - deliberately think it, really bring it up as a conscious state, and notice the space around it.

In propagating such teachings, Ajahn Sumedho has done the world a great service, and he has the gratitude of many, many people, including yours truly.

The final part of the book is named Living the Dhamma. This is a freedom that comes from mindfulness rather than blind desire, and is based on the teachings of Buddhism. So that is not the way.

The way of mindfulness is the opening of the mind to the way it is - to this time and place. It not only communicates the basic teachings of Buddhism, but does so in a way that promotes their active understanding by the reader. Moreover, Ajahn Sumedho supplies his reader with the techniques required to do so, as with the instructions regarding noticing space above.

This collection of Buddhist teachings cannot come more highly praised by this reviewer - make the next book on Buddhism you buy this one. You will benefit in many ways, depending how much you apply its contents to your own life. Its page on their site is here: The Mind and the Way. Another book by Ajahn Sumedho has been reviewed on this blog; to read it click here: The Sound of Silence.

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Ajahn Sumedho

It is worth noting here that Ajahn Sumedho did not write this book - he spoke it, for it has been edited from spontaneous talks given by him prior to its original publication n Not that this detracts from the quality of the teachings at all, for they contain an organic flow that is typical of an accomplished speaker such as the ajahn. He emphasizes that these teachings are not dogmas to become attached to, but rather insights to reflect upon, to experience. The Buddhist premise is that by reflecting, by contemplating, and understanding that common human experience, we can transcend all the mental delusions that create human suffering. And, in doing so, we take the initial step towards nirvana, for suffering is the motivation to seek enlightenment in the first place.

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