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Publisher's Summary

Finding freedom in our most difficult circumstances.

What if the full sense of our aliveness were only to be found amidst our most challenging times and difficult experiences? In pain and crisis, teaches Pema Chödrön, there lies a hidden doorway to freedom that appears to us only when we're sure that there is no way out.

In these intimate audio learning sessions, Pema Chödrön helps us distinguish the triggers or external events that we blame for our suffering from the deeper habitual patterns that feed our anger, fear, or sadness. From this understanding, we learn how to free ourselves from our propensity to suffer through the transformative awareness of impermanence - the dynamic and ever-shifting nature of both joy and suffering, self and selflessness-and the absolute and eternal flow from which all of it arises.

What is causing my pain? What will happen if I simply lean in, keep company with it, hold it with tenderness? Moment by moment, Pema supports and encourages listeners to bring an openhearted sense of curiosity and welcoming to our apparently impossible situations or unbearable relationships - to discover the deeper freedom available just beneath the surface.

For those experiencing emotional crisis, When Pain Is the Doorway provides expert guidance to help us stop, stay present, and enter into a more welcoming, spacious place of being that is our true home.

©2013 Pema Chödrön (P)2013 Pema Chödrön

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Crucial topic. sound is fine.

Where does When Pain is the Doorway rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This topic is basically 'Charnal ground practice' which is interacting with/coming to terms with one's own interactions with and reaction to death. There is discussion on approaches to death and how that applies to our experience of life. It is clear that Pema is coming to terms with this subject, and this talk reflects that more than other talks which may be more concretized in regards to information. I still found it highly valuable and enjoyable.This topic is fairly short and a specific guided meditation is not included, however techniques for working with the topic are discussed, as well as experiences and approaches of people working with it. This is a lecture with some very good question and answers at the end. This is not a full retreat and so does not have the lengthy discussion with multiple meditation sessions during the lecture.I find Pema very approachable as a listener due to her humility and complete honesty. This allows me to listen to not only what she is teaching, but how she embodies walking her spiritual path.

What was one of the most memorable moments of When Pain is the Doorway?

It is in the sample recording I believe. Pema describes a hospice worker helping someone who is terrified to die, and what seems to work is telling the person to 'rest in the space' between breaths when this person is having severe difficulty breathing. She also describes her own and other's experiences working Charnal ground practice, and views of life working it -- as a way of working 'things are falling apart'.

What does Pema Chödrön bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I don't think a book would include her honest revelations 'I get panic attacks' that in some ways are so profound - she just accepts it like everything else. Those to me keep all the work and talks 'real'. I don't think that would make print in a polished book, yet it sets the ground for life's problems to be acceptable for anyone. I also find integrating this information easier listening to it versus reading it.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

"Death is the paintbrush of Life"

Any additional comments?

It's a short topic (about 2 hrs). It doesn't give all the answers but does spend time there.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Les
  • SACRAMENTO, CA, United States
  • 04-12-15

A Cognitive Shift

Great lectures, with practicality and helps you shift into a healthier cognitive paradigm. Highly recommended. Don't just listen once, repeat.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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A different way to relate to life's obstacles

Pema patiently works with us till we can truly grasp how a keen awareness of impermanence of all phenomena can take us from the pain of the moment into the depths of our silent eternal being.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Healing

There is so much peace wisdom and relief in her work. She is my living hero...
Thank you so much!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • sigrun
  • Stavanger, Norway
  • 07-29-13

Beautiful on pain

As always; very uplifting to listen to Pema Chödrön, even (or maybe especially) when pain is the subject.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Good in many ways

This talk was informative but the production was not as good as many of her other talks. At times it was difficult if not impossible to hear the questions.
I had difficulty making the leap from Charnal grounds practice to embracing pain. Not as clear as many of her other teachings, but always good to hear Ani-la.

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very important, helpful information

I loved it. Pema makes it understandable and easy to take into my own practice.

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Great read

this was very honest and eye opening. would highly recommend this book for people who are struggling with anger, past trauma, and fear.

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Great building block

If you could sum up When Pain is the Doorway in three words, what would they be?

Insightful, beginner friendly

Any additional comments?

I am in the beginning stages of learning about Buddhist concepts. This was accessible and insightful for a beginner like me. There were a lot of new pieces of information that I found to be immediately useful and practical in day-to-day application.

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Really Powerful

This audiobook is very poignant and powerful. It cuts through to the hardcore nuts and bolts of all those moments we all try desperately too avoid, and includes them also as practice. What a relief. Thank you.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-06-14

Interesting work let down by production quality.

Any additional comments?

The content is really interesting, however the recording of the second half is absolutely abysmal and I am surprised that Audible would charge for something of such poor quality.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • M. Lord
  • 03-15-15

Good talk

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I enjoyed this talk. The subject on hardship as a door opening for growth is useful and inspiring.

Any additional comments?

The only drawback was some parts of the recording quality aren't the best only because of microphone being moved, so a few spots muffled.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • SJRod
  • 12-10-17

excellent

I have all of Pema Chodrons audio talks and books and even more on pre-order. as always excellent quality recording live and again excellent explanations.

highly recommended

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  • jenny stanbury
  • 01-25-16

Perfect simplicity.

Pema Chodren always manages to capture the essence of Buddhist teachings in a way which is accessible and profound. Whether you are an experienced Dharma student or a beginner Pema Chodren's words are truly inspiring.