This book is an updated version of Bhante Vimalaramsi's widely read “Anapanasati Sutta: A Practical Guide to Mindfulness of Breathing and Tranquil Wisdom Meditation”. Using the Earliest Buddhist Suttas including the Majjhima Nikaya and the Samyutta Nikaya, Bhante shows us how to practice meditation using those books as our only guide. He shows the reader that there was a step that was left out that is critical to the success of the meditation. This step is the key to the ending of craving and the attaining of Nibbana in this very life.
Bhante Vimalaramsi became a Buddhist monk in 1986 because of his keen interest in meditation. He went to Burma in 1988 to practice intensive meditation. He came back to the U.S. in 1998 and has been teaching meditation throughout this country.
This book is what Bhante has found after 37 years of meditation. After completing many insight meditation courses and meditating up to 8 hrs at a time and doing as long as a 2 year retreat in Burma, he felt that there was still more left to learn. He felt that craving still existed and that something was missing. Yet his teachers told him there was nothing left to teach him.
It was suggested by a monk in Sri Lanka (Venerable Punnaji) that suggested he go back to the earliest teachings of the Buddha as written in the Nikayas, and use ONLY that material to do the meditation. Doing this he might find what he was seeking.
He did do that and took a copy of the Majjhima Nikaya translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi (Wisdom Publications 1995) and went to a cave in Thailand and spent 3 months, together with a cobra as company, and practiced just what what was written there. He found a step in the meditation that had been left out by other teachers. This book is about the practice with this added step – Tranquilizing – and what happens with that piece added. He found that it works and it does eliminate Craving. And it happens if you follow exactly what is in the Suttas. And as the Suttas say it is immediately effective. Not 20 years, not 10 years, not 1 year and even in as little as one week the goal may be attained!
The book has full instructions on Lovingkindness, the Breath, and Forgiveness meditation. He explains how to do them using the Anapanasati Sutta as a guide and backs up everything he says with the actual sutta text.
Read this book and try this practice and you may just find a technique that really leads you to the supreme truth of Nibbana in this very lifetime.