Karma and Chaos: New and Collected Essays on Vipassana Meditation Paperback – Sep 1 2003
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And the title essay, "Karma and Chaos" is an amazingly fertile presentation of the ancient and timeless teachings of the Buddha in light of the cutting edge discoveries of western science.
Mu Soeng, director of the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies, has said of it: "I just finished reading the essay on Karma and Chaos from your book and I want to congratulate you on an extraordinary piece on Dhamma and scientific perspectives. I would like to say that it is one of the shining moments of how ancient wisdom tradition from the East is being received in the West. The language is beautiful and there is a cogent and passionate communication of some very complex ideas in ways that do not oversimplify them and yet make them accessible."
In Karma and Chaos a scholar (professor/psychiatrist/meditation teacher) and his son examine the ancient doctrine of karma in the light of modern Chaos Theory. Though most religious and moral philosophies express a belief in some law of "you reap as you sow," from the limited perspective of an individual this seems to be contradicted by accidents, luck, and an unscientific, mystical cosmology. The idea that there might be a higher moral law that functions independent of capricious, supernatural powers in a complex but rational way is intriguing.
In this book the complexities of karma are made more intelligible, even rational, by applying an overview of Chaos Theory. This helps one transcend the limited linear rationality of the individual and examine karma within a cosmic framework.
Whatever your views of karma, Karma and Chaos provides unique and interesting insights. And it's only one of seven essays in the book. It's worth a read.
Like all mammals we strongly identify with the sensations in our body. We think we are responding to external stimuli but in fact we are really responding to our physical sensations that are triggered by what we see, hear, think and feel. With Vipassana meditation we can systematically reduce our mental conditioning by directly experiencing our physical sensations.
Just like those who lived 2,500 years ago, people today want ease, happiness and clarity in their lives. The integrity of Paul Fleischman, MD, definitely comes through in his words and his excellent book points the way to a technique that can take us there.
A wonderful experience.
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