I've read many books on meditation and while each of them answers some of my questions, Jack Kornfield's book, A Path with Heart, answers every one save those that must be experienced first-hand in one's own time. His voice and advice is articulate, intelligent, humorous, open, patient and wise. He starts out by telling you a little about his own experience, goes on to cover the basics of vipassana meditation and then leads you bit by bit deep into the issues every meditator and spiritual seeker must face. What I love most about his teaching style is that he gives gentle, practical advice on the day-to-day, minute by minute stuff to do to explore, commit to, love being on the path. If my house were on fire and I had to grab only one book on my way out the door, it would be A Path with Heart.
. . . let it be "A Path With Heart!" With wise and skillful words, Jack Kornfield is a master of teaching Buddhist practices including insight meditation (known as vipassanna) to Western students for over 20 years. Being a former Buddhist monk with a PHD in psychology, as well as a husband and father, he is able to communicate the practice of Buddhism in everyday life in a way that makes sense to Western minds. Kornfield embraces the stuggles and hindrances that are common to the spiritual path as well as offering timely and useful meditations for awakening, opening the heart and clear and humorous insight into basic Buddhist principles such as the 5 precepts, the Buddhist view of self (or lack thereof) and karma. With open arms and a deep understanding of the Western psyche and it's tangles, Kornfield delivers a book that is a love song, a workout and a survival manual for anyone committed to the spiritual path.