Emptiness: A Practical Guide for Meditators — Guy Armstrong
My knee-jerk reaction to this book was: This is the best book on Buddhism and the Buddhist Path I have ever read; but then again, I tend to lean in that direction about all Buddhist books I read. So, to be fair and to be as objectively subjective as I could be, I had to take a time-out and a few steps back to honestly examine this: Is this book, indeed, the best book on the Buddha’s Path that I have ever read?
The jury is now back in the room: It is.
From the Sherlock Holmes and Country Joe epigraphs and his opening words—“I’ve always liked a good mystery”—Guy Armstrong not only intrigues but inspires a very warm confidence: here’s someone I could spend an afternoon with just talking. And as the tale proceeds, one clearly stated step after the other, you realize that you are, in fact, in the presence of a master—both as Buddhist and as Teacher.
Emptiness is, as most Buddhists are aware, a central (if elusive) theme in the Dhamma and has been addressed in a library of many books and views (some truths, some opinions). No other Teacher, though, in my not-so-very humble opinion, has put this key Teaching and Truth so clearly and so understandably to the reader.
Perhaps I just happened to be in a very fortuitous path-place for this book, yes, the thought crossed my mind, and that this is why I got so much out of it; but I don’t think that is true: I think this book will speak to any seeker, whether novice or experienced. I really do.
At times, reading this book felt like reading myself think—and like a long, smoldering epiphany. At times I could not help laughing, a joyous laugh. I was in the presence of a true Teacher and I was seeing things from new and refreshing angles.
I believe that anyone who reads this book will also laugh joyous laughs.
To say that I recommend this book would be the understatement of the decade.