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The Book of Not Knowing

by Peter Ralston

Over decades of martial arts and meditation practice, Peter Ralston discovered a curious and paradoxical fact: that true awareness arises from a state of not-knowing. Even the most sincere investigation of self and spirit, he says, is often sabotaged by our tendency to grab too quickly for answers and ideas as we retreat to the safety of the known. This "Hitchhiker's Guide to Awareness" provides helpful guideposts along an experiential journey for those Western minds predisposed to wandering off to old habits, cherished presumptions, and a stubbornly solid sense of self. With ease and clarity Ralston teaches readers how to become aware of the background patterns that they are usually too busy, stressed, or distracted to notice. The Book of Not Knowing points out the ways people get stuck in their lives and offers readers a way to make fresh choices about every aspect of their lives, from a place of awareness instead of autopilot.From the Trade Paperback edition.

Pursuing Consciousness

by Peter Ralston

Building on his previous groundbreaking work, Peter Ralston once again proves to be a sure-footed guide for readers seeking to negotiate the challenging terrain of personal and spiritual growth. In accessible language, Ralston demonstrates how the lofty goals of self-transformation and enlightenment can be achieved with a no-nonsense approach available to anyone willing to reach beyond their current experience of self and reality. Pursuing Consciousness is a down-to-earth handbook for staying focused on the work at hand, even while tackling such unsettling tasks as investigating deeply ingrained psychological beliefs and identifying common areas of misunderstanding that hamper transformative growth. Ralston explains that deeper levels of consciousness aren't just for monks--anyone can have an enlightenment experience. He shows that enlightenment does not transform the self, and transforming the self does not produce enlightenment. Once we grasp that these two pursuits take place in entirely different domains of consciousness, we can use each to empower the other. Ralston provides specific tools for changing the very person that we experience being. His work has been acclaimed by people from a diverse range of disciplines--including spiritual teachers, psychiatrists, cognitive scientists, physicists, and artists. As with Ralston's previous works, this book points the way to a direct encounter with the true nature of Being and the possibility of real personal change.From the Trade Paperback edition.

Zen Body-Being: An Enlightened Approach to Physical Skill, Grace, and Power

by Peter Ralston Laura Ralston

In this inspiring guide, Peter Ralston presents a program of "physical education" for anyone interested in body improvement. Using simple, clear language to demystify the Zen mindset, he draws on more than three decades of experience teaching students and apprentices worldwide who have applied his body-being approach. More of a transformative guide than a specific list of exercises devoted to any particular physical approach, Zen Body-Being explains how to create a state of mental control, enhanced feeling-awareness, correct structural alignment, increased spatial acuity, and even a greater interactive presence. Exercises are simple, often involving feeling-imagery and meditative awareness, which have a profound and sometimes instant effect. Where similar guides teach readers what to do, this book teaches readers how to be.From the Trade Paperback edition.

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