The Spirituality Revolution eSuffering Pretty fucking negative right and then all that focus onmptiness I just didn t get it it sounded so lame and dull to say that nothing Comptia Cysa+ Cybersecurity Analyst Certification Bundle (Exam Cs0-001) existed all was illusion and one should renounce desire and so I couldn t really get into it which is why it wasn t until the metaphorical depths of buddhist thought were opened to me later that I saw the beauty of it A accurate translation of dukkha is unsatisfactory or unease so that the first noble truth reads that there is a sense of pervasive dissatisfaction to life You get the promotion at work and its great for a while butventually it wears off and you feel the same old grind you fall in love and spend an amazing sunset dinner picnic camping trip with your lovely amazing smart creative lover and Economies and Cultures every moment seems gorgeous but within a year the bickering and fighting and nagging starts up you have a wonderful vacation in the tropics but the thought of going back to the job your sick of keeps popping up and making you anxious about how uickly the time is disappearing when you arenjoying yourself and craving something you can hold onto from the vacation a part of that happiness you can carry with you like an object and because you can t an underlying sense of sadness mixed with joy pops up And there are obviously many basic Designing with Web Standards examples getting what you don t want not getting what you want old age sickness injury death people leaving your life in one fashion or another According to buddhist philosophy a central facet to human suffering is that we have a consciousness that can imagine and thus desires something permanent and stable in a universe whereverything from stars to fingernails is impermament here for a moment and then gone recycled back into the Sadies Surrender (Oyster Harbor, everythingnothing And we want consistency and perceive this stable consistency in terms that separate all things creating in our minds a world of duality and thus division which in turn generates tension and conflict One of the reasons we do this is so that we can attempt toscape from the inevitable negative pole the unpleasent the suffering that is inherently part of life If we are seperate from it and can see it coming or be warned perhaps we can prevent it But the problem is there is really no separate consistent and stable thing in the universe that is to say there are no objects or subjects really there are object subject actions processes waves and pulses one continual flowing of this into that inter being universe as in one song one symphony with billions of instruments playing their parts as individuals but only in there flowing blendedness is the lovely music generatedpick you metaphorwe are all parts of other parts Structure Of The Nucleus even a few molecules of the air I am breathing now may one day flow through your nostrils and into your lungs despite the fact that you may be thousands of miles awayif we could understand and accept these things for what they are Buddha says not only accept butmbrace the freedom
AND COMPASSION GENERATED BY THE LIMITLESS OPENNESS THAT COMPLETELY compassion generated by the limitless openness that completely these two concepts with all of your being ntails then that pervading sense of disuiet incomplete fulfillment would dissolve because we are already verything we are mean to be that is incomplete fulfillment would dissolve because we are already Releasing The Power Within Through Spiritual Dynamics everything we are mean to be that is areverything But the paradox is we can t see our brains our designed specifically not to see it because it would overwhelm many who are not ready to see it and in our foolish attempt to Passage Through Crisis escape dukkha instead of facing it head on and thus growing an understanding of its nature in all its forms fear angry irritation discomfortct we generate dukkha That is the catch in the first story the flitting away from the the catch in the first story the flitting away from the the whole flightiness of the language represents the self on this trip of self generated ignorance in the form not so much of denial as the knowledge is there but avoidance due to fear The second story is almost like the flower sutra where the buddha before a crowd of followers at the Jeta Grove simply held up a flower and Ananda was instantly Science, Technology and Culture enlightened That is the second one is simple likenlightenment or this understanding of cosmic consciousness but it reuires so many turnings or revolutions of self to arrive It can be summed up with the last phrase the Buddha was reported to have The Road to Einsteins Relativity ever said be a light onto yourself as you are the only one responsible for your own salvation I d rate this 25 starsIf it were possible to hold all of the people s stories all of the time in one s head heart and hands there is no doubt that in thend Black Boy each would be unvanuishably linked by a single religious detailIn The Empty Chair Bruce Wagner tells of the Buddhist spiritual journeys taken by two utterly disparate people Both stories which happens years apart fromach other are linked in a tenuous way which might strain your memory a little bit and are told to a fictional Bruce WagnerThe first novella is the story of an aging gay Buddhist in Big Sur California He has led a difficult life having been repeatedly molested by a priest in his local church which led him to Nighttime Sweethearts experience panic attacks as an adult But he pursued a somewhat romantic relationship with a woman who wasnchanted by Buddhism and had a son who was the center of their universe As his wife taught a basic form of Buddhism in prisons including San uentin and then in schools he raised their son as a stay at home father But their lives were rocked when their 12 year old son committed suicide and he has been unable to settle down since that tragedy traveling in a Volkswagen busThe second novella follows ueenie a larger than lif. St living in Big Sur who achieves nlightenment in the horrific aftermath of his child’s suicide In Second Guru ueenie an aging wild child returns to India to complete the spiritual journey of her youth Told in ravaged sensuous detail to the author narrator by two strangers on opposite sides. I found this book to be OK It certainly name checks and concept checks some interesting figures in Buddhism in the US and other new age stuff Of the two interconnected stories which occur in reverse chronology for dramatic ffect I rather preferred the first one The second one was a bit wordy and tedious although it started out strong I don t come upon many literary treatments of Safe in My Arms eastern religion that actually work very well but the author does seem to get the concepts he s throwing around Even so it s uite the dog s breakfast I can t say I would recommend this forveryone You probably have to be somewhat of a dharma bum to fully appreciate the humor and sharp satire of the cringing inducing unself awareness of those trying to become self aware as well as his sensitive and insightful portrayal of people who are really trying to walk the path which include the cringe inducers and all of us human beings and the inevitable pitfalls along the wayYou can also skim through a lot of the stream of consciousness ranting which you don t find Presunta colpevole entertaining without missing anything which I consider a positive attribute of the book I had to look up a whole lot of words too which I also consider a positive attribute of the book One thing that jarred me was that it seems like there was a plot hole about a sticker at thend But otherwise I Poisoned Secrets (Murder and Mayhem enjoyed the book and I didn t think it worthwhile to investigate the plot hole I wanted very much to love this book I love the idea the concept but for me the telling left something to be desired I would be fascinated one minute then the next I d have to force myself to keep reading hoping that the next time I got sucked in it would stickThe idea of the characters telling their story to an interviewer who then transcribes the stories to page is an interesting one but in practice I felt it got a bit too bogged down with stream of consciousness diatribes This interfered with my absorption of their often uite profound individual tales and again I occasionally had to struggle to continue reading As for the detail that linked the two stories I found myself vacillating between thinking it was brilliant and contrivedMaybe three stars is a bit harsh I often have trouble giving books a concrete rating I have read a lot of Bruce Wagner s work His brutal dark satires of life in Hollywood are tremendouslyntertaining Wagner journeys to a spiritual world in these two novellas which crisscross across Zen mysticism and guru adulation in America and India Despite the change in venue all of Wagner s satiric talents are readily present in these two stories which strangely connect at the Safe Words end of the second story I read this book in the aftermath of the Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain suicides and without any spoilers these deaths made these stories of spiritual searchers stumbling down blind alleys resonated with me Another great Bruce Wagner book These voicesxpress a 70s gestalt with which I am intimately familiar
Was that silly and gullible at times Yeah And yet who can fault the yearning for meaning in that silly and gullible at times Yeah And yet who can fault the yearning for meaning in s life Wagner captures all the contradictory ualities of that navel gazing yet reaching for the stars self punishing self indulgence getting lost in the trappings and accessories while seeking simplicity Wagner knows whereof he speaks yet gives voice to characters not himself In the second line of his interview the fifty year old male is His To Claim (McBain Brothers Alpha, either shown to be an unreliable narrator or no onedited this book If you are interested in Buddhist philosophy The Black Sheeps Baby (Into The Heartland) (Into The Heartland) (Silhouette Intimate Moments, especially the zenkoan parts and intellectual traps tapistries and interlocking puzzles of self realization that populate the intricacies of its intellectual side as well as the religious aspects that take on the flavor of a particular culture in this case the Marahashi guru culture of India then this is a book I recommend The first piece which is actually the second piece is one long beat koan with a tragic twist that isnlightening The characters basically there are two as well as two interlocking stories are fleshed out and very convincing nothing artificial or contrived about them from my point of view and the meta Bruce is so far in the background during Pursuit of Justice each interview that one would hazard to guess thatither consciously or subconsciously he was aping that zen style of landscape painting with the immense cragily mountains and waterfalls taking up the whole scene with the tiny little insignificant barely recognizable hermit in some obscure area near the corner of the frame The first character s flighty spontanious and digressive monologue fits the central action of the story perfectly indeed as there seems to be action of the story perfectly indeed as there seems to be upon layers of metaphorical symbolic mind games going on in this puzzle piece one could say the first piece touches on one of the central Buddhist concepts associated with the wheel of samsara and the nature of the dukkha it generates A little Buddhist refresher course if you will dukkha has been mistranslated in the general west as suffering though corrections as to a precise translation are now slowly leaking into the culture at large There is definately a tendency in the west to perceive Buddhism as a variation of a cynical nihlistic philosophy partly because of the old translation which signifies dukkha as primarily suffering so that Guatama s first Noble Truth comes out somewhere along the lines of all life is suffering indeed uite a few of the first English buddhist texts I purchased during my juniorsenior of high school listed the first noble truth as all life is. Composed of two companion novellas The Empty Chair is a profound heart wrenching piece of spiritual storytelling from Bruce Wagner the internationally acclaimed author of such novels as Dead Stars I’m Losing You and Force Majeure In First Guru a fictional Wagner narrates the tale of a Buddhi. ,
review The Empty Chair,
E woman who was a wild child sleeping around with dangerous men and taking drugs She met Kura a criminal who longs to become a saint when he saved her life after she was attacked by a boyfriend outside of a nightclub Kura rescued her took care of her and brought her to India on his search for his spiritual guru Although she ultimately left Kura to follow his own spiritual journey she always thought of him and when he calls her 27 years later to ask her to join him in finding the guru again who has disappeared she doesn t blink an Dangerous to Touch eyeI just didn t get this book Admittedly I don t know much about Buddhism but while the book is upfront about its subject matter Ixpected the religion to be touched on in a superficial way an Eat Pray Love type of journey than one that delves so deeply in its details Buddhist terms and figures are used repeatedly without any real background I honestly felt like the book should have come with a prereuisite that you know a certain amount firstWagner s literary device of a narrator recounting the stories he is told as if they re being told to him at that moment didn t work for me Once Upon a Seduction (Its All About Attitude either The narratives were tremendously stream of consciousness which made them difficult to follow In the first novella forxample the main character went on Rodeo Daughter extended riffs about the Beat poets and his relationship with the widow of Beat figure Neal Cassady which detracted from the meat of the plot And while his son s suicide was tragic the way it was told and the details he used made me uncomfortable at timesI ve never read any of Wagner s books before but I recognize his ability to give his characters strong voices so I may try a different one All of the reviews I ve seen of this book have been tremendously positive so it may be my lack of spiritual awareness buffered me from the book s appeal Religion usually doesn t have a prayer in literary fiction From novels you d never suspect that tens of millions of Americans attend servicesvery week and pray My Guilty Pleasure (Harlequin Blaze every day Sure there are lots of religious books published in the United States from sacred texts to inspirational tracts andven sizzling Christian romances but ascend into the heavenly realm of Serious Fiction and you ll find that Nietzsche was largely right about God Marilynne Robinson Alice McDermott Bob Shacochis the authors who take matters of the spirit seriously could barely fill one pewBruce Wagner is a parishioner at the holy church of Hollywood He s written and directed screenplays and his name dropping novels such as last year s Dead Stars sacrifice the Beautiful People on a glitzy altar of satire He s also long been drawn to mysticism both for his own I once took a class from a noted playwright It was mid course and he d already culled his students the way influential artists do not through critiue but by teaching beyond them When footholds are tough to locate people find reasons to leave He d winnowed his acolytes to less than a dozen and to these few he gave winnowed his acolytes to less than a dozen and to these few he gave assignment We were to come up with the most frightening thought we could conceptualize The scariest thing we could think of Have it by the next session And when that session arrived he asked if we d completed our task Did we have our frightening thought Yes we did He nodded and said we would not be discussing it Nor would we be writing about it He simply wanted us to knowNow understand doing this to a group of struggling writers is very much like handing a fifty dollar bill to a five year old and scorting him directly to a bank Not pleasant for the five year old Frustration swells Tears are not out of the uestion This is some psychically painful stuff It s also fairly dangerous Yes of course you ve just been presented with a freshly informed place to write from and hurray hurray butyou are also in sudden cognizant possession of a very well delineated personal fear A fear worth offering to a man who knows his fear Something you found twitching restlessly at the alphaomega root of your brain Something starkly A Wanted Man (Silhouette Intimate Moments, existential Swords don t come doubledged than thatBruce Wagner is currently charting this territory with back to back novellas outfitted in Buddhistic raiment Generically titled First Guru and Second Guru they present as interviews Wagner has collected in his travels not with recognized sages but with two human beings whose lives upended within the Buddhist domain Charles a gay man mangled in his youth by a priest s sexual abuse valiantly charges through a thickly referenced fog OF DENIAL AND DISCONNECTION TO RELAY THE STORY OF denial and disconnection to relay the story of later and profound tragedy that altered the course of his My Spy (Mission: Impassioned, existence ueenie a former wild child who barelyscaped a violent Until You Loved Me (Silver Springs, end conscientiously reconstructs the story of her lover s disenchantment with his faith and how once saved then changed she found herself lost againThis material captures the immediacy of recollection in progress Charles and ueenie refer to Bruce and are keenly aware of their audience bringing pressure to bear on the need to tell it right Tangential forays are fraught with tension and defensiveness the pure and thoroughly troubling ordeal of attempting toxplain in full what one fears is inexplicable Wagner takes it upon himself to supply the The Baby Album eventual connections and reaches a bit by thend Credulity strains Secret Agent Minister and Deadly Texas Rose even by the California standard Still thatmpty chair is a highly charged symbol and one I have Why Not Tonight (Happily Inc., encountered directly for far too long a time in this life But why gift you with the nightmare of that particular piece of knowledge It s what we have Bruce Wagner for. Of the country years apart fromach other both stories illuminate the random chaotic nature of human suffering and the miraculous strength of the human spirit A deeply affecting and meditative reading Her First Mother (Conveniently Wed, experience The Empty Chair is anxuisitely rendered thought provoking and humbling new wor.