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In this lucid classic, beloved teacher Ayya Khema introduces the reader to the essence of the Buddhist path. She addresses the how and why of meditation, providing a clear framework for understanding the nature of karma and rebirth and the entirety of the eightfold path. With specific, practical advice Ayya Khema illuminates the practices of compassion and sympathetic joy and offers forthright guidance in working with the hindrances that we all encounter in meditation. Few introductory books are both simple and profound. Being Nobody, Going Nowhere is both.
About the Author
Born in Berlin in 1923 to Jewish parents, Ayya Khema was educated in Scotland and China and later emigrated to the United States. The author of twenty-five books, she was ordained as a nun in Sri Lanka in 1979 and established several Buddhist centers, including Wat Buddha Dhamma in Australia, Parapuddua Nun's Island in Sri Lanka, and Buddha Haus in Germany. In 1987 she coordinated the first-ever International Conference of Buddhist Nuns. She passed away in 1997.
Zoketsu Norman Fischer is a Zen priest and abbot, a husband, father, poet, and a teacher with wide-ranging interests and passions. Norman retired as abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center in 2000. He continues his involvement with the Center as a senior dharma teacher. In 2000 he founded the Everyday Zen Foundation, a network of Zen (and other) groups and partnerships dedicated to sharing the Zen teaching and practice widely in the world (www.everydayzen.org). He works with conflict resolution professionals, Google engineers, lawyers, caretakers for the dying, and many others to bring meditation practice to bear on the lives we are actually living every day. He continues his active practice of writing dharma books, essays, and, especially, poetry. His most recent collection is Conflict. Norman lives overlooking the sea at Muir Beach, California, with his wife, Kathie, who is a science teacher and scuba diver. They have two grown sons and a grandson.
"This jewel of a book is full of sound, practical advice. Not just highly recommended but essential reading."
— The Middle Way
"This book is a valuable guide to the path of meditative insight and loving compassion. It is direct, clear, and inspiring."
— Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness
"Essential reading for hearts inclined to the path."
"Few introductory books are both simple and profound. Ayya Khema has achieved both."
— North American Board for East-West Dialogue
"Of special help are the Ayya's simple, grounded instructions to aid us in our everyday lives to develop calmness of mind and insight into our human existence...forthright and resolute guidance for the journey."
— Karuna: A Journal of Buddhist Meditation
"I just finished reading Being Nobody, Going Nowhere, and I just wanted to tell you how much it has helped me feel grounded in regards to my search on the spiritual path. Her manner of writing is so clear and meaningful and easy to grasp. These are the kinds of books that I like to underline, ear flap, and carry with me everywhere for continual support and inspiration. This is the first book I read on Buddhism, and in 31 years I finally feel like 'I'm home.' What an incredible feeling to finally have all of my 'inklings' and intuitive moments come together and make complete sense regarding life!"
— From an unsolicited reader email