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Buddhism for Beginners | [Jack Kornfield]

Buddhism for Beginners

Created specifically to address the questions and needs of first-time students, here is Buddhism's vast spiritual legacy, presented by one of America's leading meditation teachers.
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Publisher's Summary

Created specifically to address the questions and needs of first-time students, here is Buddhism's vast spiritual legacy, presented by one of America's leading meditation teachers.

©2001 Jack Kornfield; (P) Sounds True

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (86 )
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4.4 (27 )
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4.3 (24 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Edward Shepton Mallet, Somerset, United Kingdom 02/11/2009
    Edward Shepton Mallet, Somerset, United Kingdom 02/11/2009 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The best audiobook I have bought so far"

    I love audiobooks, but lets be frank, they can be pretty variable!

    This one takes the format of teachings recorded live in front of an audience. Jack Kornfield delivers these lectures in an accessible manner, with appropriate humor that never detracts from the content and indeed assists in delivering the messages. I sometimes find it hard to listen to audiobooks in American or other accents (I am dyslexic and have APD) but his voice is calming, never patronizing and as a result I have listened to this many times over.

    My usual audiobook 'fodder' is comedy, dramatized stories or perhaps some general classics to pass long journeys. However, I bought this as an agnostic who has been exploring theology and belief systems, and remarkably this has already helped me through some difficult times. As a newcomer to Buddhism, this did not put me off by sounding elitist or too 'new world-y' (I tend to recoil when I feel I am being fed hippy nonsense). Instead, this has been genuinely enlightening and helpful and gets my highest recommendation.

    I shall now continue to explore Buddhism and will certainly favor Kornfields work. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank him for making this and for the impact that it has already had upon me.

    Instead, I am buying a further audiobook outside of my monthly plan

    33 of 34 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gary TADLEY, United Kingdom 31/03/2011
    Gary TADLEY, United Kingdom 31/03/2011 Member Since 2009
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    "A gentle introduction:"

    At first I found the lecture format a bit off-putting but as the author continued I found it increasingly pleasant and relaxing.

    I would recommend this as a good, gentle introduction into buddhism and would certainly consider purchasing any further contributions by Jack Kornfield in this area.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deirdre Ireland 20/01/2012
    Deirdre Ireland 20/01/2012
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    "buddhism for beginners"

    this book was excellent and i really enjoyed listening to it and learned a lot about the buddhist way of life from it. i enjoyed the narrator also found his voice calming and gentle, think this book would be excellent for anyone interested in buddhism or even just to listen to to destress and see the reality of life and whats important its a real eyeopener and life changer cant wait to listen to more from jack

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin OMAGH, United Kingdom 24/11/2012
    Kevin OMAGH, United Kingdom 24/11/2012 Member Since 2010
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    "Funny, insightful and inspiring - non buddhist"

    I picked this up looking for some inspiration to get through a period of illness that was stretching my sanity.



    The author is very funny and engaging and I learned more than a trick or two from it. I keep going back to it when I am looking for energy and ideas to help get me through difficult times. I have found it especially useful in dealing with chronic physical pain, even though it's not a meditation book.



    I have always had an enquiring mind and much of this book rings true for me, even though I am not a religious person.



    A really good listen that I think will help enrich your quality of life.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kjzee 07/08/2014
    kjzee 07/08/2014 Member Since 2014
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    "Genuine, warm, funny and compassionate"
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    The author has a genuine, warm and caring approach to the subject matter born out of deep wisdom, knowledge and practice. The story of buddhism is delivered via a series of lectures on the important elements of the subject in front of a live audience. This really allows you to get a sense of the gentle, kind and humourous nature of the author, and the warmth and respect of the audience for the speaker.


    How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?

    Yes, greatly. Deep, yet accessible insight in to the tradition with an eye to the Eastern roots of the teachings and a Western context for the practice.


    Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

    The teachings are littered with stories, quotes and insight from great teachers and leaders from all traditions. Lots of deeply moving stories from the author's personal experience and amusing anecdotes keep the perfect balance between light heartedness and being deeply moved.


    What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

    Not a thing. Great insight to the teachings and flawless, caring and compassionate delivery. I've listened to the book a number of times, the author is now a part of my daily life as I can hear his words as I go through my day.


    Do you have any additional comments?

    Highly recommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    miss m w wieczorek 29/05/2014 Member Since 2014
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    "Lovely to listen to"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Buddhism for Beginners to be better than the print version?

    I have not read the print


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Buddhism for Beginners?

    The overall lecture is grat


    Any additional comments?

    I have to say at the very beginning i wasn't too sure about jack kornfield and his american accent but half hour in and i was hooked. his voice is very soothing and relaxing. It was my nighttime routine and i was falling asleep very easily therefore i am listening to it again, and i will probably do it few more time since it's a great listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miss United Kingdom 14/04/2013
    Miss United Kingdom 14/04/2013
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    "peaceful"

    Almost meditative, this audiobook is a great bedtime listen and feels almost therapeutic as well as informative. I learnt all the basic facets of Buddhism without feeling preached at or presdutusrd. You can take what you want from the content, and the delivery is calm and almost hypnotic as his voice kills you to sleep. Only problem wad I had to keep rewinding when I missed bits due to snoozing! A good intro.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer SOUTHAMPTON, United Kingdom 09/04/2013
    Amazon Customer SOUTHAMPTON, United Kingdom 09/04/2013 Member Since 2013
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    "great"

    I wanted to start listening to books since this gives me the freedom of doing activities like sewing or pottering around the house while listening to something interesting.

    I bought it based on the reviews and I wasnt disapointed.This is a great book if you dont know anything at all about buddhism and want to start at some point.It doesnt matter if you know much religion all together.This is simple and adapted to our world and the times we live in.

    The book is very entertaining and is read in front of a live audience.the best part is that the author takes a subject like religion which is often seem as too seroius or ceremonial but is not afraid of making inncoent jokes and bringing examples that put a smile on you.I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Downes UK 07/04/2013
    D. Downes UK 07/04/2013
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    "Very calming"

    I have read books on Buddhism in the past but found this to be the most accessible. It is read in a very light and calming way. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in Buddhism/mindfulness or spiritual development in general.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dee S Bath, Somerset 08/11/2012
    Dee S Bath, Somerset 08/11/2012 Member Since 2012

    I have been enjoying listening to audio books as I cant hold a book to read it.I have read over 60 books and some I have read more than once

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Buddism for Beginers"

    Not to bad but I will listen to it again as i never heard the end of the chapters because i would be a sleep before the end. I listen to audio books when i am going to bed or having a nap as it helps me relax.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 10 results
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  • Anna
    Vancouver, WA, USA
    13/07/09
    Overall
    "Might be difficult for true beginners..."

    I really enjoyed these lectures. They definitely give a greater understanding of what Buddhism means. However, I do think I wouldn't have grasped many of the deeper meanings if I hadn't had some introduction to very, very basic Buddhist concepts to begin with. I would recommend listening to "A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle before listening to this if you are a true beginner and a Westerner. Most of it was extremely helpful (see my review on that one). My only other complaint about this audiobook is that Jack Kornfield really seems to love the sound of his own voice. Sounds hypercritical, but the breathy, caressing voice could be a little nauseating at times.

    29 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • Colleen
    River Falls, WI, USA
    24/12/08
    Overall
    "Highly Recommended!"

    For me, this has been the next best thing to having a great teacher in my own home. His calm manner, deep insights and easy to understand presentation are a gift to anyone interested in knowing more about Buddhist philosophy. I have listened to this over and over again and get something more each time. Along with Thich Nhat Hanh and Pema Chodron, the teachings of Jack Kornfield have had a life changing a influence in my life. I am grateful to have these audio recordings so easily available.

    25 of 25 people found this review helpful
  • Daniel Alderman
    Spokane, WA USA
    28/05/08
    Overall
    "This is the one..."

    I almost didn't get this book because of the reviews about Jack Kornfield's speaking voice. I'm glad I didn't make that huge mistake.

    If you're interested in learning about Buddhism, then this is the book. This is the guy to explain it to you. His voice is perfect for what he's explaining. He's not reading the pages into a microphone in a studio somewhere, he's speaking from his heart with genuine compassion.

    This is a good quality recording of a series of informative speeches given to a small audience. The speaker is a Buddhism master, and I think he's enlightened and is passing the Buddha's wisdom as well as his own down to students who wish to learn. I am just beginning my studies of Buddhism and I feel like this was the perfect introduction.

    If you're interested in learning about Buddhism, get this. You won't be sorry.

    52 of 54 people found this review helpful
  • James
    Tucson, AZ, United States
    03/01/09
    Overall
    "A delightful introduction to Buddhist Life"

    This is a wonderful series of dharma talks given by the foremost (at least in my mind) American Buddhist teacher, Jack Kornfield. Kornfield's voice and manner are warm, soothing, and kind, and he illustrates his distillation of Buddhist teachings with everything from real-life anecdotes, poetry, and jokes. It is a pleasure to listen to, from beginning to end. The beauty of these talks is that they do not require a previous knowledge of Buddhism or a desire to immerse one's self in scripture. Kornfield gives practical advice on cultivating mindfulness, lovingkindness, and interconnectedness for even the most non-dogmatic of listeners. What a delight!

    25 of 26 people found this review helpful
  • Nicholas
    Haenertsburg, South Africa
    10/05/11
    Overall
    "A great first look into Buddism/ liked the speaker"

    I was weary at first since some were complaining about the speaker, saying he was irritating and to be honest it took me a chapter to get into the way he speaks. Ended up really liking the speaker though his quotes from Don Juan Matus to Woody Alan made it easy to relate to the stories and philosophies.

    Would recommend.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Sean
    Addison, TX, United States
    08/11/10
    Overall
    "excellent"

    a most excellent book. i will admit that he kinda sounds like a subdued Mr. Rogers at naptime. the speaking voice kinda turned me off at first but i hung with it because of the content. he has a good cadence and clarity of speech so it's easy to get past the tone.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Elizabeth
    Nebraska City, NE, United States
    23/04/11
    Overall
    "Better than Expected"

    Mr Kornfield's presentation is informative and at times, very funny. If you've been curious about Buddhism, I would highly suggest that you give this audiobook a try. Even if you are not looking for enlightenment, this selection has information for leading a calm, centered and spiritual life. At first the live audience threw me off but I came to appreciate their reactions and laughter and got great enjoyment from it. I also purchased Meditation for Beginners from Mr Kornfield and have also found it helpful and enjoyable. Listen at bedtime for a great nights sleep.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Micah J. Hall
    Gosport, United Kingdom
    01/02/11
    Overall
    "This recording will change your life"

    It was this recording that really touched me. Jack Kornfield has the right style to talk to the west. A really beautiful way of presenting the Buddhas teachings in a way that really means something in everyday life.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Honey
    New Port Richey, FL, United States
    10/04/10
    Overall
    "MUST HAVE FOR FIRST TIMERS"

    I love this audible! This is a must have for anyone who is unfamiliar with Buddhism or is interested in learning what it is and how to apply it to your everyday life. I listen to this book at least twice a week and parts of it daily! He makes it easy to understand and how to apply it to every day living. It is in layman terms, humorous, insightful. You walk away with a very in-depth understanding of what Buddhism is and how it can benefit your life! I just purchased another book by this author! Must have.... Money well spent! I recommend this one before purchasing his other book, Roots of BuddhismPhychology, which is my other favorite of his. I like the way he uses humor to which I can relate to and the different story his refers to.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Carolina
    Westmeadows, Australia
    14/01/11
    Overall
    "Excellent!"

    Excellent book for people interested in learning about Buddhism. Jack Kornfield explains it all in a simple and inspiring way. Don't be put down by comments below about the way he speaks, you won't regret listening to this book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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