Staff Book Picks – April 2017

Every month, each member of the Samadhi Cushions team recommends  a different book of their choice.


Radical Dharma
By Rev. angel Kyodo Williams

” ‘The problem is not whiteness or Blackness. The problem is the way in which we relate to those identities,’ so says Rev. angel Kyodo Williams in this compilation of talks and dialogue by three African American Buddhist teachers and leaders. Radical Dharma is a ‘way in’ to a conversation—a conversation with each other, as well as a conversation needed with ourselves. Walking a path, how can we (and our spiritual communities) expect to wake up without waking up to the implicit or explicit role we ourselves play in what Rev. Williams calls society’s ‘delusions of systematic aggression’? Lama Rod Owens and Jasmine Syedullah are the other eloquent contributors. A call to action that extends beyond the borders of our sanghas.”

— Michael Greenleaf

By Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

“In the course of writing his biography of Suzuki Roshi called Crooked Cucumber, David Chadwick amassed a wealth of stories people told about him – short snippets of advice, or offhand remarks, or things said in passing during a talk, which didn’t quite fit into the formal biography. Fortunately for us, he collected them into this delightful, funny, wise, mind-stopping little book. This is the one that starts, ‘One morning when we were all sitting zazen, Suzuki Roshi gave a brief impromptu talk in which he said, ‘Each of you is perfect the way you are … and you can use a little improvement.’ ‘”

— Sumner Bradley

By Chögyam Trungpa

The Heart of the Buddha is a collection of teachings by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche on the fundamentals of Buddhism in our everyday lives. In it you’ll find introductions to buddha nature and mindfulness as well as Trungpa Rinpoche’s insights into money, poetry, relationships, and death. There are also discussions of the Refuge and Bodhisattva Vows for anyone thinking of making a commitment to the Buddhist path. For anyone curious about Buddhism this book is a good place to start.”

— Mark Wilhelmi

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