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In the Buddha’s Words

Inspirational Book Reviews

Summary

This review of “In the Buddha’s Words” will undoubtedly be a bit longer than many of my other posts. If you haven’t guessed by now I am more than a little interested in Buddhism, which you can find out more about on my other blog thestoicbuddhist. I have the soft cover version of the book, which is 485 pages. The books has high quality print and the font is not too small, making it very readable. The book starts out with a forward by the Dalai Lama, then a preface, list of abbreviations, key to pronunciation in Pali, and a detailed list of the contents of the book. This is a scholarly explanation and exploration of discourses in the Pali Canon. The book is divided into 10 sections and each section includes a somewhat lengthy introduction that helps provide a better understanding of the the text in the…

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The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck

My latest book review. Let me know what you think.

Inspirational Book Reviews

Overview

Well here we go again, another book making use of the word Fuck. You might remember another book review I did on Unfu*ck Yourself by Gary John Bishop. This book The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A Fuck by Mark Manson was a book I read partially a couple years ago. More recently I ran into a review of this book on YouTube by the author and decided to give it another try. It turns out this book is pretty good and kind of got me out of a funk I was feeling.

Don’t let the title fool you, it’s not about meandering your way through life and not giving a shit about anything, far from it. One of the key messages is stop giving a fuck about everything. When you give a fuck about all the little things in life, you lose focus on what is really important…

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The Three Pillars of Zen – Philip Kapleau

The Three Pillars of Zen – Philip Kapleau

Inspirational Book Reviews

The Three Pillars of Zen

Summary

It is a real joy to review the Three Pillars of Zen by Roshi Philip Kapleau. I have listened to this book on Audible several times and read a paperback version. The book is fairly long with the paperback being 441 pages and the audio version 14 hours and 27 minutes. The book covers in detail the practice of Zazen or what some might call meditation in great detail. While I am equating Zazen to meditation the author makes a distinction that Zazen is not traditional meditation. Roshi Philip Kaplan spent over 14 years in Japan studying Zen from the masters, most notably Yasutani Roshi. There is also a historical account of the great Dogen along with sources of information presented from both the Rinzai and Soto Zen disciplines perspectives. Much of this book is about the Yasautani Roshi’s encounters with Western students documented in painstaking detail by Roshi…

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Allen Carr’s Easy Way To Quit Smoking

Inspirational Book Reviews

Allen Carr's Easy Way To Stop Smoking

Summary

If you are a smoker, you might have entertained quitting, and you may be aware of the book that Allen Carr wrote called Easy Way To Stop Smoking. Now if you are not a smoker, but know someone who would benefit from quitting, then read on. I just finished the Kindle version of the book, but have also read the paperback version which is a little over 200 pages long. The premise of the book is that we continue to smoke because we don’t really understand why and that we perceive we are getting some positive benefit from smoking. He talks about the Little Monster and the Big Monster a lot in this book. The Little Monster being the addiction to nicotine and the Big Monster being our psychological dependence on smoking, with the Little Monster being a mere 1% of the problem, and the Big Monster being 99%…

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The Daily Stoic

Inspirational Book Reviews

Overview

The Daily Stoic written by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman provides a quote for each day of the year, by one of the great stoics. Along with each quote is an analysis by the authors, which is useful in gaining a better understanding of what the stoic was trying to convey. The vast majority of the stoic quotes in this book come from Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, and Seneca. The authors not only cite who the quote came from, but also the source such as a book or letters, and each month has a theme such as awareness, problem solving, or duty. Just to give you an example, I am writing this book review on March 15th and the quote for that day is:

Were you to live three thousand years, or even a countless multiple of that, keep in mind that no one ever loses a life other than…

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Atomic Habits – book review

Inspirational Book Reviews

Atomic Habits is a book written by James Clear and as you might guess it is about ways to create habits. I happened to opt for the Audible version of this book, which by the way is narrated by the author. It’s not a terribly long read or even listening to it on Audible is less than 6 hours. The paperback version is 205 pages long and is $6 more expensive than the hardcover version on Amazon, which just doesn’t seem right.

What I liked about this book:

The premise behind the book is that the small (atomic) habits you adopt in your life have a major impact on your happiness and success in life. The author explores the psychology that underlies the adoption of a new habit and provides a number of proven approaches to adopting them. The author claims that it is not how long you have been…

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The Fountainhead – book review

Inspirational Book Reviews

Overview:

The Fountainhead was written in 1943 by Ayn Rand who has to be one of my top 5 authors. I have read The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged another Ayn Rand novel several times. More recently I have both books available on Audible. There are several key characters in this novel, but the most notable is Howard Roark who is an architect. Howard is the focal point of the book for his individualist character and the love he possesses for his work. As with Atlas Shrugged this novel pits the individualist (capitalist) against those that feel there is little meaning to life and everything should be shared (socialist). Like all of Ayn Rand’s novels there is this good vs. evil plot being played out, or you might look at it as conventional vs. innovative when referring to the central theme of architecture. I won’t give away the details of the…

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Book Review – Stop Doing That Sh*t

Inspirational Book Reviews

I believe this is the latest book by Gary John Bishop and it’s called “Stop Doing That Sh*t“. If you read my book review of UnFu*k Yourself you know how much I enjoy Gary’s writing. UnFu*k Yourself was focused on our internal self talk and the author provided 8 rules or tenants for living a better life; helping you to begin steering your ship in the right direction. This book Stop Doing That Sh*t takes us in a different direction. Mind you it doesn’t invalidate what Gary Bishop wrote about in UnFu*k Yourself, but after listening to it a couple times it really complements it.

As I mentioned I’ve listened to this book a couple times now and found it fascinating and of course very entertaining. Gary John Bishop has a great Scottish accent and a no holds barred style of writing that gives it to you in…

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