Best books on meditation for beginners, is one raging question that crawls under every meditator’s skin. It’s hard to sit without instructions, but it’s even harder to clear the fog of doubts that appears from nowhere, later. Actually, we don’t have to clear them, we just have to sit and breathe, but even for that, we need few good books on meditation to get started.
No matter what, our meditation is not complete without some good books on meditation. It’s good to have a concise understanding of the procedure, but I’m afraid, the secret to meditation is mysterious and the knowledge and instructions you’re after, is scattered in not one, but in these few great books on meditation.
If you’ve started sitting lately or have been practicing since long, these books are a medium to know yourselves deeply and opens you up to the world of kindness, peace and tranquility. Whether you meditate or not, these few good reads on meditation or on living life in peace, will improve the quality of your life.
6 Best Books On Meditation For Beginners
Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind by Shunryu Suzuki
“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.”
The most important things in our practice are our physical posture and our way of breathing. We are not so concerned about a deep understanding of Buddhism.
And that’s how we learn things, learn about ourselves, learn to live life by keeping the beginners attitude towards everything.
From details about postures, breathing techniques, to deep philosophy that grow close to meditation, Zen Mind – Beginner’s Mind has everything a beginner meditator will ever need. Shunryu Suzuki’s writing style is simple, straightforward and no-nonsense, and it will surely allure beginner meditators to explore and practice more. Read it, if you’d like to take your meditation practice to next level, as if there’s any, because we all are beginners.
The book is practical and a straight-edged sword. Read it and savor the wisdom of revered teacher like Shunryu.
Everyday Zen: Love and Work by Charlotte Joko Beck
“If we can accept things just the way they are, we’re not going to be greatly upset by anything.”
I’m sorry you’ll not find instructions on meditation in this book, but the simple American approach to Zen shows us how to live each moment to the fullest, how not to get bogged down by life problems and how to live each day just like a Zen monk would do. It’s a glimpse into how a Zen monks thinks and live their life happily with all their troubles and problems bestowed upon them.
Though there’re no instructions on meditation given inside, this book is a must-read for everyone who’s on the path of meditation or on their discovery. It speaks about ultimate matters with ultimate simplicity.
Taking the Path of Zen By Robert Aitken
Our practice is not to clear up the mystery. It is to make the mystery clear.
I’d say that another name of Zen is simplicity. With that simplicity, Aitken has written this book while many authors have failed to do so and that’s what makes me want to read this book again and again. If you’ve started sitting lately for meditation or if you are looking for a start, you can either find a teacher, or you should buy Taking The Path Of Zen By Robert Aitken.
It’s quite practical and puts instruction on meditation in most simple, straightforward way. This is very much a “how to do it” book. And truly speaking, practicing is what Zen is all about and this book has captured it in the most simplest way ever.
The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation by Thich Nhat Hanh
“Don’t do any task in order to get it over with. Resolve to do each job in a relaxed way, with all your attention. Enjoy and be one with your work.”
No list that talks about best books on meditation for novice or experienced is ever complete without the mention of much revered Buddhist, Thich Nhat Hanh. Where Meditation is about getting face to face with the reality, Mindfulness has its own practical use when inculcated in our daily lives.
This short read “The Miracle Of Mindfulness” offers practical exercise to learn mindfulness – being awake and fully aware.
How to Meditate with Pema Chodron: A Practical Guide to Making Friends with Your Mind
“The principle of nowness is very important to any effort to establish an enlightened society.”
Pema Chodron is another author one cannot leave from a list that talks about meditation. Most of her books talks about spirituality, living life-like a Zen, how to face the terrors and tyranny of life and whatever that’s labeled as “discomfort”. Pema Chodron’s wisdom has a solution to all your problems.
Just like Robert Aitken’s Taking the Path Of Zen, How To Meditate with Pema Chodron has instructions on meditation in a way, every beginner prefer to read. From posture to breathing, from focus, dealing with issues like physical discomfort, difficult emotions, wandering attention, or drowsiness, the book has guided sessions for resting in the nature of mind, staying present plus straightforward advice for bringing the fruits of practice into everyday life. Pema Chodron’s words will surely clear your path for a better meditation practice.
Mindfulness in plain English by Henepola Gunaratana
“Don’t set goals for yourself that are too high to reach. Be gentle with yourself. You are trying to follow your own breathing continuously and without a break. That sounds easy enough, so you will have a tendency at the outset to push yourself to be scrupulous and exacting. This is unrealistic. Take time in small units instead.”
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I know you’ve doubts about and if the teacher isn’t available to clear them, then this book will help you. This is one of those few good books on meditation that’s written in the form of question/answers. Yes, even the silliest questions ever asked, are answered with utmost simplicity. This short read will have a long impact on our life. Also the “Mindfulness In Plain English” is one of the beneficial read you’ll ever read on your path to meditation.
So, these are few good books on meditation for beginners as well as experienced meditators. If you can find a teacher or a Zen or meditation centre close to where you live, join them and get face to face instructions from an experienced practitioners early on and then continue your meditation practice from the comfort of home with these books.