Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha: An Unusually Hardcore Dharma Book

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Karnac Books, 2008 - Body, Mind & Spirit - 406 pages
29 Reviews
* Author posits that enlightenment is an attainable goal
* Argues that meditation is a method for examining reality

The very idea that the teachings of meditation can be mastered will arouse controversy within Buddhist circles. Even so, Ingram insists that enlightenment is an attainable goal, once our fanciful notions of it are stripped away, and we have learned to use meditation as a method for examining reality rather than an opportunity to wallow in "self-absorbed mindnoise".

Ingram sets out concisely the difference between concentration-based and insight (vipassana) meditation; he provides example practices; and most importantly he presents detailed maps of the states of mind we are likely to encounter, and the stages we must negotiate as we move through clearly-defined cycles of insight. It's easy to feel overawed, at first, by Ingram's assurance and ease in the higher levels of consciousness, but consistently he writes as a down-to-earth and compassionate guide--to the practitioner willing to commit themselves this is a glittering gift of a book.
  

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Review: Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha: An Unusually Hardcore Dharma Book

User Review  - Juergen - Goodreads

This book's a bit of a slog. I'd offer another star if it was better edited. That said, the collection of information available herein is invaluable to one who has a bit of practice time logged. The ... Read full review

Review: Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha: An Unusually Hardcore Dharma Book

User Review  - Susan Tucker - Goodreads

Not a philosophy book, this book is a how-to guide for the serious meditator. I appreciate the book for describing the territory and aims of insight practice and concentration practice in a way I've ... Read full review

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Contents

Foreword and Warning
11
Introduction to Part I
21
Concentration The Second Training
30
The Three Characteristics
37
Practical Meditation Considerations
90
Introduction to Parts II III
113
Content and Ultimate Reality a
122
A Clear Goal
136
The Concentration States Samatha Jhanas
167
Noself vs True Self
182
The Formless Realms
188
The Progress of Insight
195
The Vipassana Jhanas
246
How the Maps Help
259
The Three Doors
273
Beyond First Path What Next?
285

Harnessing the Energy of the Defilements
144
From Content to Insight
153
Concentration vs Insight
161
Models of the Stages of Enlightenment a
294
The Cessation of Perception and Feeling
389
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About the author (2008)

Daniel M. Ingram began entering into classical meditation territory as a teenager quite by accident and without knowing it crossed into territory that he would later call various names, including The Dark Night and the Knowledges of Suffering. He had no idea what had happened, but somehow knew that he had to find something. After being inspired by a good friend who got to the first stage of enlightenment after a retreat in centers in the Buddhist tradition, he began going on intensive insight meditation retreats in the US, India and Malaysia. By simply following the instructions he achieved the expected results, and has since become part of the global movement of meditation reform, a movement that seeks to preserve core meditation technology and supports, integrate helpful aspects from across traditions, refine the techniques and maps through exploration and verification, and spread the message that it can be done. It is also a movement to strip away the aspects of dogma, ritual,rigid hierarchy, myth and falsehood that hinder high-level practice and keep the culture of meditation mired in unhelpful taboos and misplaced effort. Dr. Ingram also has an MD, a Master's degree in Public Health, and a bachelor's degree in English literature. He practices in the U.S. as a board-certified emergency medicine physician. He hopes that those on the path will practice well, aim high and become accomplished practitioners who will help to train others to do the same.

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