Posted in meditation, Reading, Reading List 2012


Back in December I made a reading list for myself. One book a month.  Thanks to Leap Day tomorrow, I will be on track.

My January book was 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami. This was not on my original list. Somebody handed me this 900 page tome in early January, and I thought: Aw, Shit!  I am such a sucker for a long novel, and this was going have to be added to the list. There were no novels on my original list, so, “Here you go!” the universe seemed to be saying.

I totally fell in love with Haruki Murakami and fell down the rabbit hole of this books for weeks.  It’s one of the best novels I have read and I recommend it highly.  I just found this interview with him, and this is what he said about his work habits:

When I’m in writing mode for a novel, I get up at four a.m. and work for five to six hours. In the afternoon, I run for ten kilometers or swim for fifteen hundred meters (or do both), then I read a bit and listen to some music. I go to bed at nine p.m. I keep to this routine every day without variation. The repetition itself becomes the important thing; it’s a form of mesmerism. I mesmerize myself to reach a deeper state of mind. But to hold to such repetition for so long—six months to a year—requires a good amount of mental and physical strength. In that sense, writing a long novel is like survival training. Physical strength is as necessary as artistic sensitivity.

Love this.

This is sort of what I am trying to do with all of my daily “fundamentals” and especially with my meditation practice.

My February book is helping me immensely with this.  My February book is Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha by Daniel Ingram and is changing everything I have ever thought about meditation.

I am now, thanks to the clear instructions in this book, training in concentration practice.  No more sitting there wondering, “Is this what I should be doing??”

Nope. Now, thanks to this generous, sane, often hilarious, book, I know how to work on the cushion.

Good times.


I teach yoga. I love to breathe. Kapalabhati pranayama rocks my world. I can’t sing (but love to chant) I love rituals I was born a Capricorn (on the cusp) I cannot live without coffee. I can sit perfectly still for over an hour. I am afraid of deep water. I can’t parallel park. I know how to scuba dive (but won’t). I can eat anything with chopsticks. I don’t use coupons. I was at Woodstock. I have a large vocabulary. I have slept in the Everglades surrounded by alligators. I used to want to be a bartender. I used to want to be a nun I am happiest when I am around purple things. I can read Tarot cards. I can’t eat eggplant. I have relatives in The Wizard of Oz. I have paddled a canoe with a nudist. I function best with 9 hours sleep. I can go for a week without speaking. I am addicted to blogs and social media. I love the poetry of Pablo Neruda, Mary Oliver, Rilke and Billy Collins I watch My Dinner with Andre every January as a ritual I don’t drink enough water. I love my computer I hate to vacuum. I do not like hydrangeas. I love the Sierra Mts. I dislike the name “Debbie.” I have read all of Proust. I love yoga I like to fly kites. I have never smoked a cigarette. I cry at movies. I only watch really crappy TV. I wear a size 8 shoe. I hate the smell of burnt toast. I love catalpa trees. I speak no foreign languages. I love to drive. I hate clowns. I love roller coasters. I hate country music. I do not like the sound of bagpipes. I hate shaving. I love Brie. I love to watch water move. I hate plastic cutlery I love my Kindle I do not love my phone I love sitting up to my neck in hot water.

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