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Buddhism for Beginners

Narrated by: Gabra Zackman
Length: 4 hrs and 43 mins
4 out of 5 stars (55 ratings)

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Summary

This user’s guide to Buddhist basics takes the most commonly asked questions - beginning with “What is the essence of the Buddha’s teachings?” - and provides simple answers in plain English. Thubten Chodron’s responses to the questions that always seem to arise among people approaching Buddhism make this an exceptionally complete and accessible introduction - as well as a manual for living a more peaceful, mindful, and satisfying Life. Buddhism for Beginners is an ideal first book on the subject for anyone, but it’s also a wonderful resource for seasoned students, since the question-and-answer format makes it easy to find just the topic you’re looking for, such as:

  • What is the goal of the Buddhist path?
  • What is karma?
  • If all phenomena are empty, does that mean nothing exists?
  • How can we deal with fear?
  • How do I establish a regular meditation practice?
  • What are the qualities I should look for in a teacher?
  • What is Buddha-nature?
  • Why can't we remember our past lives?

©2001 Thubten Chodron (P)2014 Audible Inc.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Thorough introduction to Tibetan Buddhism

I must admit I overlooked this book on more than one occasion imagining it would be a little lightweight, it isn't. It covers a lot of material and answers a lot of questions I have and repays multiple listens.
The narrator had a beautiful voice too which helped and I found it matched the content very well. I look forward to my next Thubten Chodron audiobook now and hope Audible can get more of them. Enjoy.

5 people found this helpful

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Learnt a lot

A very good summary that touches on a myriad of interesting topics and ideas. A relaxing and inspirational listen that is not preachy; much like its subject matter.

1 person found this helpful

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Great for beginning

Having an interest in Buddhism but not having read anything about it before, I was worried that this book might be hard going. But I needn’t have. It was so well read and explained everything so well that I finished it and couldn’t wait to learn more.

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Enlightening

A good start to get a overview of the key ideas of Buddhism through a Question and Answer method. Found it very interesting and listened to it in a single day. Although, Narration is a little monotonous as it's hard to differentiate between the Question and the response. Apart from that, I found it enjoyable and am keen to find out more.

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Bit of a weird one

This isn’t really a introduction to Buddhism as such, it is a question and answer works which I’m sorry to say I found quite uninteresting. Firstly I didn’t really like the Q&A format, putting that aside, I still feel an opportunity was missed to raise discussion on the essential teachings, say the Four Noble Truths, The Eight Fold Path, etc. This book contains questions more along the lines of “do Buddhists eat meat?” ; “should Buddhists use antidepressants?”; "why do Buddhists wear different colour robes?".

I also found it quite preachy in parts, (such as the part on raising children) and while some parts had an explanation behind the reasoning, for example the meat question as mentioned above, others I found lacked any real depth, overall this made the book feel quite 'empty' (bad Buddhist pun intended).

I think I also struggled with this one because of the narrator, the work is delivered in quite a dull and monotonous tone, I had to really concentrate to absorb what she was saying and often found her voice faded in to the background.

May be worth a listen if you've just discovered Buddhism but don't expect too much.

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The Narrater was the problem

I'm sure the contents were fine but the Narrater made or boring. There was no feeling in her voice and I felt it was a complete waste of money. No stars but I had to give one to submit. Don't waste your money on this Narrater

4 people found this helpful