When the Buddha was asked to sum up his teachings in a single word he said 'awareness' - experiencing the whole of reality, seeing what is, and being entirely in the present. In this way, the mind is made free.
As the popularity of Buddhism soars, so does the complexity of Buddhist interpretation and doctrine. Buddhism Plain and Simple strips Buddhist teachings of the embellishments they have accumulated over the centuries and presents the original way of the Buddha in everyday, accessible language, unencumbered by religious ritual, theory, or belief.
Outlining the Buddha's four truths of existence, Zen teacher Steve Hagen explores their practical manifestations in life and describes the path Buddhism provides for coping with the world as we find it. Buddhism Plain and Simple deals exclusively with the here and now, not with speculation or distant realms, and is a profoundly valuable handbook for every person who embarks on a journey to enlightenment.
Ideal for beginning and advanced students of Buddhism alike, this is a beautifully written, refreshingly direct guide to a powerfully transforming spiritual philosophy.
— from back cover
This book offers a clear, straightforward approach to Buddhism in general and awareness in particular. It is about being awake in touch with what is going on here and now.
When the Buddha was asked to sum up his teaching in a single word, he said "Awareness". The Buddha taught how to see directly into the nature of experience. His observations and insights are plain, practical and down-to-earth, and they deal exclusively with the present.
In Buddhism Plain and Simple , Steve Hagen presents these uncluttered, original teachings in everyday, accessible language unencumbered by religious ritual, tradition, or belief.
— from the inside flap
This is a book about awareness. Not awareness of something in particular, but awareness itself - being awake, alert, in touch with what's actually happening. It's about examining and exploring the most basic questions of life. It's about relying on the immediate experience of this present moment. It's about freedom of mind.
It's not about belief, doctrine, formula, or tradition.
The observations and insights of the Buddha are plain, practical, and eminently down-to-earth. They deal exclusively with here and now - not with theory, speculation, or belief in some far-off time or place. Because these teachings remain focused on this moment, they remain relevant, and profound value, to every culture and every person who investigates them seriously.
It is to these uncluttered, original insights and observations that this book returns.
For people investigating Buddhism for the first time, this book offers a clear, straightforward look at the wisdom and guidance of an enlightened teacher who lived some 2500 years ago - yet whose teachings remain as vital and penetrating today as ever.
For people already familiar with Buddhism (including long-time practitioners), this book provides a long-needed overview of Buddhism's essentials, free of the fetters and cultural trappings that have accumulated over 25 centuries.
For every person with desire to see deeply into the nature of existence, it is a call to awakening.
— from the Introduction