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Publisher's Summary

Life has a way of provoking us with traffic jams and computer malfunctions, with emotionally distant partners and crying children - and before we know it, we're upset. We feel terrible, and then we end up saying and doing things that only make matters worse. But it doesn't have to be that way, says Pema Chödrön. It is possible to relate constructively to the inevitable shocks, losses, and frustrations of life so that we can find true happiness. The key, Pema explains, is not biting the "hook" of our habitual responses. In this recorded weekend retreat, Pema draws on Buddhist teachings from The Way of the Bodhisattva to reveal how we can:

  • Stay centered in the midst of difficulty
  • Improve stressful relationships
  • Step out of the downward spiral of self-hatred
  • Awaken compassion for ourselves and others

©2018 Pema Chödrön (P)2018 Random House Audio

What listeners say about Don't Bite the Hook

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always inspiring

In a world filled with so many things that can "hook" us, Pema Chodron teaches us how NOT to bite the hook. Very liberating!

8 people found this helpful

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Useful and practical, but extreme and illogical

There are a lot of good things said in the book about managing anger and a lot of useful tips, insights and perspectives. At many times it was eye opening. The deductions made in this book, no matter how warped, contain a good deal of life lessons.

Nevertheless, the book tends to be extreme in it's advice and illogical in it's reasoning. The author suggests to stay calm even in extreme situations, like someone spitting in your face. The reasoning being that you won't get angry at the wind blowing something in your face, then that somehow means that it's indicated to get angry at the person, which is a huge logical fallacy. Getting angry at the wind will change nothing. Getting angry at the person can help you defend yourself, show that person that his behavior is not acceptable and stand up for yourself, stand up against violence, etc. True, there are better tools than anger, and nothing is worse than you becoming the aggressor, but it's just as bad to just sit there and take it, as it encourages the behavior of the person doing this to you.

Another point raised by the book is that we suffer because of our bad karma, inherited from previous lives. Not only does this reasoning rely on an ideology to which few subscribe to, but it's putting unnecessary blame on you and makes you feel like you have something to make up for (and thus you should take your punishment). Not only that but in some people to will cause them to think that all suffering they are subjected to - they deserve. This is very backwards thinking, the truth is that if you're suffering - you and only you are responsible for that and you can stop it so take action now.

As far as empathy goes - being empathetic for someone who's angry at you will rarely work, simply because that person has already rejected you and connecting with such a person is a mammoth task, although it depends on many things. It's always worth a try to diffuse a situation, but know your limits and don't let others walk on you or disrespect you, since you are only human that can be very very damaging.

5 people found this helpful

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Owner's manual for being human

Reading this book was like finding my Owner's manual for being human. It reminds us all how alike we are and how we can ease our own suffering as well as that of others.

5 people found this helpful

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Always learning from Pema

No matter how many times I listen to this book, I learn. Thanks to Pema for making these teachings so much more available to me.

I like that Pema reads her work.

10 people found this helpful

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Pema is my valium

She keeps me from being dark, morose and combative in my life. I can dip into any of her talks and get recentered.

15 people found this helpful

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Vintage Pema!👍🙏

This was quite a treat. As Pema herself led the narrative in a conference style! Where she dissected some Buddhist teachings that I never would’ve understood without her interpretations! She breaks things down too simple and understandable and relatable instruction! Vintage Pema! She has the ability to explain things in such a humanistic and practical way. And she interjects such great humor at the same time! I just love her!

4 people found this helpful

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It is a nice long Dharma talk

It was a very informative, enlightening Dharma talk. Not an audiobook but still very good.

4 people found this helpful

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Reads well, enlightening, and informative

Reads like a lecture so it is very easy listening. I enjoyed most the question and answer session at the end of the audio. This book provides real answers and real tools that are changing my life.

4 people found this helpful

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Masterful!

Pema is a supreme educator that takes us into a powerful journey...hate and anger are “unmasked” and the need to run away from “them” will vanish. This is 3 hours of pure wisdom for all ages! Prepare yourself to listen to this course hundreds of times.

2 people found this helpful

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Short but packed with wisdom

I checked this out from the library a few years ago and was happy to find it on audible. I do not have a background in Buddhist thought and that was not a hindrance. I enjoyed Pema Chodron's delivery and her sense of humor shines through.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Marija
  • 04-02-18

So happy to have it in my library!

I'm in awe with Pema Chodron's ease of explaining concepts and her humour. I have a feeling it's one of those multi-layer books that you get back to over and over always with new understanding of what was mentioned.

6 people found this helpful

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  • SJRod
  • 01-18-18

wow... excellent

I really needed this and it covered all the bases. definitely a must listen to again. pema as always in her great style delivers the message

6 people found this helpful

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  • Writer/reader
  • 07-08-19

Excellent life guidance.

We all need help with managing our reactions to everyday situations. This shows that by working with the small stuff we can train in our ability to be resilient when the big stuff happens.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Yoshay
  • 02-20-18

Helpful

Insightful and great explanation to Shantideva's teachings. Wonderful guidance on how to work with anger and other negative emotions

5 people found this helpful

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  • GERALDINE BLAKE
  • 08-19-19

Excellent book

I loved this book. Pema Chodrun has a lovely voice. She is calm, practical and makes Buddhism easy
to apply. My favourite is her ‘ two minute ‘ recommendation!!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Eva M.
  • 09-01-19

Amazing, truly wonderful listen. so wise, so funny

This is a great production of Pena Chodron take on Anger and suffering. Funny Wise

2 people found this helpful

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  • Car@Car
  • 05-04-21

A calming effect.

This should be a teaching for all adolescents and early adulthood. Many people go through life not knowing how to handle, deal with Anger and resentment. And sometimes we learn this destructive pattern later on. It's the old teaching of love your enemy, turn the other cheek. Makes
great sense but hard to practice. It takes concious effort.
I shall refer back to this everytime my buttons are being pressed. And as painful as it is to accept. I always have a choice, ignoring is Not enough, but forgiving. Serious, and lightly humoured.


1 person found this helpful

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  • Alli
  • 06-13-20

Very confusing

More hindering than helping? Did not have a clue what they were going on about!

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  • Paula C.
  • 04-03-20

Hooked

Love Pema. Very inspiring . Looking forward to being less hooked. Reduce crowd volume

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  • peggy
  • 03-26-21

Weaponless wisdom

Having been born and raised in a toxic religious environment, where scripture was forged into weaponised dogma for the purposes of facilitating separatism, exclusionism — an 'us and them' reality — I personally find these teachings refreshingly neutral. And I think many would benefit from them, as being tribal, we can tend to look on others as outsiders, even unwittingly. I find buddhist teachings to be a little removed from reality at times however, and while the teachings here employ real world examples, I feel that its core concepts are perhaps more conducive to monastery life. Sure beats the hell out of christianity though in my book.

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  • Pooja
  • 06-17-20

Thank you

I am so grateful to have listened to this. This has provided me with tools that I can now use to implement non violence within me and around me. Thank you Pema.

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  • Michael H
  • 02-16-20

Useful for frustration rather than intense anger

This book has some good ideas, but we now know much anger is caused by depression, anxiety, sleep and PTSD this book will not help with complex causes.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-29-19

10 stars for Pema Chodron and those involved.

I cannot rate this highly enough, thoroughly enjoyed this and will return to it many times. As well as will recommend it wherever It might be of use. thankyou to all involved in bringing this teaching to us ☺️🌈

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  • Shauna
  • 03-27-19

Pema nails it for me every time

Pema Chodron’s wisdom and learnings are so enjoyable to listen to. Always a bit of fun humour in there too :)

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  • Carolin
  • 10-26-18

So many inspiring insights

i know that I will definitely come back to this one again. im fact it prompted me to sign up for her online course to investigate the topics mentioned further.

i always resonate with Pema's wisdom which she conveys with humor and passion.