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Faith in ourselves - Essay Example

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Summary
To be able to negotiate the vagaries of life, a spiritual support is essential. Sharon Salzberg’s informative book Faith is a personalized account of the necessity of faith. Talking from her experiences as an American…
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Faith in ourselves

Download file to see previous pages... To be able to get enlightened, disciplined pursuit of truth is necessary. Salzberg talks about how her own spiritual journey was marked by phases of doubt and confusion. Indeed, it is these challenges which make knowledge concrete, pulling away from its conceptual abstractions. In her own case, she encountered confusion whether to follow the Burmese or the Tibetan tradition of spiritual contemplation. She states that such challenges are a rite of passage for entering a higher realm of consciousness. Even when it comes to techniques of meditation there are numerous methods. As far as spiritual awakening is concerned there is no one text-book method to follow. Spiritual progress is a personal journey and it is achieved through the individual’s own striving. Salzberg contends that although Buddhist teachers can offer guidance, the ‘truth’ cannot be revealed through instruction. Salzberg cites her own experiences as an abused child to explain how Buddhist philosophy can come to aid. Having been abandoned and abused by her parents at a very young age, Salzberg was yet able to overcome such trauma. It was purely as a result of Vipassana meditation, that she successfully conquered her past. What more, the example of her life is in itself an inspiration for many of us with similar childhoods. Salzberg forewarns that though the fruits of meditation are undeniable, attaining them requires lots of patience and persistence. Buddhism does not offer any quick-fix solutions but instead takes the seeker through trials and tribulations. It is only those with conviction and faith that come through this arduous journey. Salzberg implores us to take up this challenge, for the fruits it bears are invaluable.
I personally subscribe to what Salzberg has said in her book. Although I am not a Buddhist, I am able to see the value of Buddhist contemplative practices, especially meditation, for healthy living. It should be remembered that most modern illnesses are stress related. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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