Blossoms of the Dharma: Living as a Buddhist Nun
Thubten Chadron, Editor
North Atlantic Books, 2000; $16.95

A compilation of talks given by nuns at a three-week conferenee—“Life as a Western Buddhist Nun” –in Bodhgaya, India, in 1996. As Bhikshuni Thubten Chodron explains in the preface: “These talks were given in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere, generally in the evening at the end of a long, happy day of listening to Vinaya teachings, meditating, and discussing the Dharma.” The book is divided into sections on History, Life as a Nun, and Teachings; contributors are nuns from all over the world. Included is the legendary talk (given in the presence of H. H. the Dalai Lama in 1993 in Dharamsala) that inspircd this conference, “The Situation of Western Monastics,” by Bhikshuni Tenzin Palmo, which is a moving defense of monasticism.

The Barn at the End of the World: The Apprenticeship of a Quaker, Buddhist Shepherd
Mary Rose O’Reilley
Milkweed Editions, 2000; $22.95

Courtesy Milkweed Editions
Courtesy Milkweed Editions

In this offbeat spiritual autobiography, O’Reilley describes a year in which she dedi- cated herself to both Buddhist practice (a retreat at Thich Nhat Hanh’s Plum village) and sheep farming. The titles listed in the table of contents—“Barn Talk,” “Why I am Plodding,” “Monkey Mind,” “Practice Everything” “Sheep May Safely Graze”—give a sense of the poetry, and humor, of O’Reilley’s account.

Transforming the Mind: Teachings on Generating Compassion
H. H. The Dalai Lama
Thorsons, 2000; $20.00

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