Read Not For Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices by Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Online


Do you practise meditation because you want to feel good? Or to help you relax and be “happy”? Then frankly, according to Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, you are far better off having a full-body massage than trying to practise the Dharma. Khyentse shows that genuine spiritual practice, not least the Ngöndro preliminaries, will not bring the kind of comfort and ease most worldDo you practise meditation because you want to feel good? Or to help you relax and be “happy”? Then frankly, according to Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, you are far better off having a full-body massage than trying to practise the Dharma. Khyentse shows that genuine spiritual practice, not least the Ngöndro preliminaries, will not bring the kind of comfort and ease most worldly people crave. Quite the opposite, in fact. But if your ultimate goal is enlightenment, Ngöndro practice is a must, and Not for Happiness your perfect guide, containing everything an aspiring practitioner needs to start to practise, including advice about:    • “renunciation mind”   • discipline, meditation and wisdom    • using your imagination in visualisation practice   • why we need a guru Students’ Reactions to Not for Happiness: “Having a map of the path that shows where each practice is headed helps me to see what each stage is preparing me for. Even the chapters that at first didn’t seem relevant to my current practice contained such great gems of teaching that they turned out to be extremely relevant and very helpful.”—Catherine Fordham “To me, this book is like the world’s best kind of GPS! I feel that by following its guidance, even though I am not a skilful driver, I will have the confidence to drive through my Ngöndro practice—and may even end up feeling quite good about it!”—Helena Wang...

Title : Not For Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781611800302
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 240 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Not For Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices Reviews

  • Tanya McGinnity
    2019-05-19 01:18

    After judging a book by it’s cover and wondering what the honk was going on with this design and thinking I had a few too many of those cocktails in my years of practice and study, I was anticipating what Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche had in store with his most recent book “Not for Happiness : A Guide to the so-called Preliminary Practices”.From the start, I have to say that this book knocked me on my arse like a stiff cocktail. If there is anyone out there dispensing tough love, it is Khyentse Rinpoche and I do love and admire him for it. With his previous book, “What Makes you not a Buddhist” he dismantled the romantic fantasies that many hold about Buddhism – all the glorious pomp and circumstance, showmanship and fancy doodads that can seem more appealing then the ass on cushion, eyeballs to sutras and full-throttle application of the dharma.In “Not for Happiness” Rinpoche goes quite a bit further and drops readers into an exploration of the preliminary practices (aka Ngöndro) and provides a guidebook for what this aspect of the path entails. Readers will get a glimpse into practices but it should be forewarned that in my personal opinion, it’s always best to consult with a teacher before dabbling in these kinds of spiritual endeavors. It’s also not really a book for the newbies. That’s not to dissuade you from checking it out if you’re new to the dharma, but I think that there’s quite a bit of language and terminology that requires a good base of an understanding of some degree of Buddhism in order to grasp the wisdom within this book’s pages. It is fairly heavy material and no doubt, I will be re-reading this book several times to get at its full richness.Rinpoche speaks a great deal to the customs surrounds spiritual practice and how many look at ngöndro as something to ‘get through’ in order to get at the juicier teachings or the danger of this practice becoming ‘meaningless ritual’. Techniques and suggestions are given throughout the book and it is truly a gift to have read these teachings and been allowed some insight into how I can seek to apply them to my own practice. The book covers the topic of ‘Why study and practice’ and gives enough of a sense of urgency to put the pedal to the metal. Again, a feature of Rinpoche’s writing that I value so very much.The book is an honest look at how modern dharma students can explore ngöndro practices given the distractions us laypeople face while we engage in spiritual practice and how we can embody and live in the dharma. It’s a no-holds barred look at how Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche himself has struggled with motivation, emotions and renunciation.Speaking of no holds barred…"So, if you are only concerned about feeling good, you are far better off having a full body massage or listening to some uplifting or life-affirming music than receiving dharma teachings, which were definitely not designed to cheer you up. On the contrary, the dharma was devised specifically to expose your failings and make you feel awful."Hence the title “Not for Happiness” I guess….Overall, I have to say that this was absolutely the best dharma book I’d read in 2012 and one that I will rely upon heavily for both demoralizing me and uplifting me in my practice. I’m not sure if this is the outcome that Rinpoche had hoped for from those reading his book, but seeing as I’m somewhat new to ngöndro, it’s what I’m left to work with.

  • Zara
    2019-05-14 02:36

    So grateful to have access to such profound guide and wisdom.Greatly recommended.

  • Miriam Holsinger
    2019-05-06 02:07

    Truly excellent. It was funny, serious, insightful and extremely helpful. I am not sure how it would read to someone not familiar with the preliminary practices but for this person who has been doing them an embarrassingly long time, it was just the book I needed.

  • Szabolcs Bökönyi
    2019-05-01 05:27

    This book is a very useful read for anyone doing the Ngondro of any tradition. The advices are useful for practicioners of any lineage and very valuable. The sense of humor of Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse rinpoche is very entertaining.

  • cesar
    2019-05-01 05:27

    This book is a wonderful guide. Rinpoche's style is most refreshing. I always find myself returning to his books and teachings along with Trungpa Rinpoche's, to get a good swift kick in the ass! Thank you.

  • เนติวิทย์ โชติภัทร์ไพศาล
    2019-05-07 06:20

    This book for me, I should read again and again.

  • Pema
    2019-04-29 05:36

    a perfect guide.. must read for the beginners :)

  • George Ilsley
    2019-05-21 01:28

    DJK Rinpoche is not one to shy away from controversy. He feels too much of modern buddhism is being associated with the "self-help" section of the bookstore, offering bliss and happiness. It is a bit of a shock or some to realize that happiness is not the goal. The goal is awareness. The introductory practices here are "so-called" because these are complete practices. There is no need to go further. However, our egos are so strong and so demanding that who can stop at just the preliminaries?

  • Willow
    2019-05-09 04:10

    I think this book will be more useful to me when I delve deeper into practicing buddhism. For starters, this book will not be engaging.

  • George Ramos
    2019-04-20 04:09

    The Nyondro practices truly have grown to be a kind of ball-and-chain for many westerners, so much so that HH Karmapa stated recently that those who are trying to balance work and practice could exempt themselves from the physical aspect of the first practice.This book by Dzongsar Khyentse helps bring things back into perspective and away from the sense of defeat that (at least for me) accompanies the practices. Lama Dzongsar shares not only his reverence and love for the practices, but also going into detail on the purpose of each one. This makes the book a rather comprehensive reference work on the actual practice of Nyondro, from the preliminaries through to the fourth stage of guru yoga.I enjoyed the book's candor and refreshing honesty, and it gets into some rather profound subjects while still keeping things grounded in practicality. The book actually helped me get back to the practice, with a clearer view on a few things, but also inspired to really dedicate myself to it. This book is highly recommended for those who have already begun the preliminary practices and need a refresher, or a push back in the right direction.

  • Sandy
    2019-05-02 08:31

    A Nyingma/Kagyu instruction book on the Ngondro practice, how and why. Clear, entertaining, clarifying; he is westernized enough to speak to us, and traditional enough to know what to say. Recommended.Nyingma/Sakya, but valuable for Gelupa. This reread is a different way of seeing meditation practice. It’s not supposed to make you happy, it’s supposed to make you liberated.

  • John Watts
    2019-05-09 07:32

    I enjoyed this primer on the Ngondro practice as a means to awakening. The author pulls no punches...the Buddhist path is hard work....practice, practice, practice. Note....this book gets pretty geeky.

  • Jayashankar R.
    2019-05-19 06:09

    Extraordinarily insightful regarding the practice metamorphising of "feeling oneself useless" for productive and lasting emotional change leading to TRUE HAPPINESS. A must read for introspective and contemplative minds.

  • Nikhil Kishore
    2019-05-04 02:06


  • Christine
    2019-05-01 08:33

    Very clear.

  • Vishanta
    2019-05-09 00:35

    Wonderful experience reading the book by the legend Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche. The book is rich with guide to the practices and full of wisdom.

  • Kaitlyn
    2019-05-09 08:22

    Good introduction to Ngondro practice but I found myself out off by Khyentse's unexamined/dismissive beliefs regarding gender and mental illness.

  • Mark Bourdon
    2019-05-07 05:34

    A good supplemental read if you are doing the preliminary practices