Straightforward teachings from a Buddhist master.
In The State of Mind Called Beautiful, Burmese meditation master Sayadaw U Pandita lays out the breadth, depth, and wealth of the Theravadan tradition of Buddhism. U Pandita begins with the basic guidelines of Buddhism, and moves on to various practices: those that can be done for one minute a day, those that sweeten and strengthen the mind, those that heal societies and families, those that lead to liberation.
Also included are complete teachings on Vipassana or Insight meditation, from how to do it, to how to refine it, to how to deal with difficulties. Teachings on the development of mindfulness, wisdom, patience, and practice itself are all included, and the book is capped by an extremely helpful "Question and Answers" section—an FAQ for newcomers and established practitioners alike. Lastly, both Pali-to-English and English-to-Pali glossaries are included, with all such terms also being glossed in the text, ensuring that readers easily master the meanings of important terms.
Sayadaw U. Pandita was the abbot of Panditarama Monastery and Meditation Center in Rangoon, Burma. He remains a treasured teacher to many students around the world.
Kate Wheeler is the author of Not Where I Started From and When Mountains Walked. She has received a Guggenheim award, an NEA, a Whiting Award, and two O. Henry Awards. She lives near Boston and teaches meditation retreats around the country and in Mexico.