©2005 Robert Thurman; (P)2005 Sounds True
Robert Thurman talks about the book commonly known as the "Tibetan Book of the Dead". He's a great scholar of the book, of the tradition from which it arises, and of its relation to other world religious writings and beliefs. He's also obviously himself a deeply spiritual person. So the talks are delightful, combining both fascinating scholarship and religious commitment. His talk is by turns serious and humorous, concentrated and playful. I highly recommend this, and one by no means need to be a Buddhist to enjoy it and benefit from it.
Not only would I listen to this again, I listen to it daily!
This generic question needs to read the question and look at this book. The title should give you a clue. But I will say that even Sogyal Rinpoche's Tibetan book of Living and Dying is the only book in the ball park for any sort of comparison. This translation and most especially Bob Thurman's delivery is quintessentially American . Yes , Bob is a real American Buddhist teacher amongst a growing handful.
I have listened to Bob Thurman before. First at the San Francisco Zen Center. He is a delight. Totally insightful and yet not too
My extreme reaction to this is : This is by far the best most easily accessed translation of the teaching to date.
After practicing Tibetan Buddhism beginning in Scotland in 1970 to this date, I have found Bob's manner and insight into the teachings perfectly suited to this moment in human history. Thank you my friend for persevering...
If you ever found the Tibetan Book of the Dead interesting or useful, this one is for you. Contemporary, without leaving the origin, explanatory, explainig and recommending parallell concepts in our own cultural paradigm, without leaving his context.
If you ever had some things that you did not quite come to terms with during acid, this might me healing for you. It was for me.
If you are going to only get one Bob Thurman download do the "Jewel Tree of Tibet" this on he rambles on a bit more and it's more one of his lectures then truly a book about the Tibetan Book of the Dead. But personally I like his quirky style, funny political commentary, and his version of Buddhism. It makes really lofty intellectual material accessible and interesting. I have listened to it at least 4-5 times already.
It's a very difficult book about the death process and reincarnation explained in easily digestible modern speech. The Bardo, the in-between life and death. Explaining the nature of our subtle mind, which, according to Buddhism, does not die. Bob explains how the belief in a final poof, death, gone forever leads us to be a bit psychotic while we're here, because we disregard karma.
Sentient Being, Planet Earth
Robert Thurman is beyond the doubt a notable Buddhist Scholar. As such, this book is not for the novice or the beginning intermediate level Buddhist. Dr. Thurman goes into great and granular detail on buddhist doctrine. As a Buddhist book on the perspective of death, the story was lost in the detail.
It supposed to be about the book of the dead, but I found it to be much more about Robert Thurman's tangental thoughts. It's not an audio of the book, it's Robert Thurman just sort of talking about the book. I really like Robert Thurman and so I want to like it more, but I just don't.
Talk more about the actual content of the book.
Hearing Robert Thurman teach this in his own style is remarkable.
These are teachings we reflect on regularly on the Buddhist path, but the ways he teaches them and leads meditation truly connect me with the intensity of the practices and inspire me.
I was prepared to be educated and perhaps in the bargain to improve my mind with this lecture. How interesting I thought. How disappointing I found. Robert Thurman peppered his lecture with political statements which had absolutely nothing to do with the Tibetan Book of the Dead. You say I'd probably not be so rankled if I agreed with his statements. You're right but I ask why his statements were necessary. They threw me off course, I became totally distracted and lost interest in the subject. One final regret is that I used an Audible.com credit for this audiobook.
"Enlightening and Inspiring"
A very accessible introduction to The Tibetan Book of the Dead. Includes a useful meditation. It's not just for Buddhists ; Robert Thurman explains in a clear , and humorous, way how people of any religion and no religion can benefit from cultivating wisdom and compassion and from learning to live and to die in a more pucid way.
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