Matthieu Ricard

Why Meditate: Working With Thoughts and Emotions

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Why meditate? On what? And how? In his latest book Why Meditate?an instant bestseller in the author’s native France—Matthieu Ricard aims to answer these very questions.
As a molecular geneticist turned Buddhist monk, Ricard brings a wholly unique perspective to the practice of meditation. Often referred to as “the happiest man in the world,” he advises us in the ways to imbue our lives with a true sense of serenity and fulfillment.
In simple, clear language, Ricard walks readers through the theories and practicalities of meditation, demonstrating its many benefits in our modern world. He shows readers how to achieve emotional balance, enhance mindfulness, expand altruistic love, and develop a sense of inner calm; while also reducing anxiety, vulnerability to pain, and tendency toward depression and anger.
This enlightening book conflates the spiritual with the scientific, the transcendent with the pragmatic, and the Western world with Eastern wisdom. No matter what point of view you approach it from—whether that of personal transformation or physical health—meditation emerges as a prominent part of leading a balanced life.
In the accompanying 60-minute CD, Ricard explores the concepts of freedom and self, expands on the benefits of meditation, and advises on the benefits of creating a regular meditative practice.
All of the author’s proceeds from the sale of this book go to Karuna-Shechen, a humanitarian organization that he founded to provide primary health care and education for the under-served populations of the Himalayan region.
Review“In this marvelous book, Matthieu Ricard articulates the Dharma in the very same way he embodies it in his life; that is, with profound clarity, goodwill, and humility. These qualities come through on every page and make the experience of reading and practicing with this elegant and deceptively simple primer on meditation tantamount to entering into and familiarizing oneself in an ever-deepening way with the landscape of one’s own truest self.”
— Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Wherever You Go, There You Are and Coming to Our Senses
“This is the book on meditation that I’ve been waiting for. Reading it has helped me hone my personal practice, and finally I have come across the perfect book to recommend to all those interested in meditation—newcomers and experts. Why Meditate? is clear, accessible, deep, and practical.”
— Tal Ben-Shahar, author of Happier
An excellent introduction to a practice that has calmed the mind for thousands of years. Profound concepts and essential instructions are explained with the utmost clarity. I highly recommend it!”

— Judith S. Beck, Ph.D., director of Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy and Research, clinical
associate professor of psychology in psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania, past president, Academy of Cognitive Therapy
“Why Meditate? is a clear and insightful guide to beginning a meditation practice, and to continuing one skillfully. Matthieu Ricard provides helpful and specific instruction along with an immense depth of understanding about happiness, suffering, and living a better life.”
— Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and The Kindness Handbook
“Writing as a true spiritual friend, Matthieu Ricard shares the wisdom he has gained from his four decades of spiritual training that clearly and succinctly presents what meditation is and how to practice it, step by step. This book is a treasure to be read with care and shared with those you love.”
— B. Alan Wallace, author of Mind in the Balance
About the AuthorMatthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk who had a promising career in cellular genetics before leaving France to study Buddhism in the Himalayas 37 years ago. He is a bestselling author, translator, and photographer; and an active participant in current scientific research on the effects of meditation on the brain. He lives in Nepal and dedicates much of his time to humanitarian projects in the Himalayas. Find out more at www.matthieuricard.org.
All of the author’s proceeds from the sale of this book go to Karuna-Shechen, a humanitarian organization that he founded to provide primary health care and education for the underserved populations of the Himalayan region.
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