The body is of course integral to meditation, but there are only a few books that focus this specifically on the body and the meditative experience. AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE addresses that need, and additionally integrates psychological concepts, which provides a more familiar entry point for people less familiar with Buddhism.
AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE
by Martin Aylward
Wisdom Publications, November 2021
Pulled around by desires and distractions, we’re so easily disconnected from ourselves. Life is happening right in front of us, and within us—but still, we manage to miss so much of it. AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE provides the antidote, inviting us to go deep into our own bodies, to inhabit our sensory experience carefully; to learn the art of living from the inside out, and in the process to find ease, clarity, and an authentic, unshakeable freedom.
The practices in the book literally bring us back into our skin, where we can reconnect with a more rich, meaningful, and peaceful life. Aylward writes with sophisticated subtlety, as well as the heart-opening simplicity and clarity born of deep experience. This book is more than a meditation guide—it’s a guide to living an embodied life.
“In the introduction to Awake Where You Are, Martin Aylward tells the reader that this is not another book about ‘how to meditate,’ and that is very true. He writes with honesty, insight, and experience to offer us a guidebook to awareness of the body, connection to the body, and deep acceptance no matter the state of that body.” – Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Change
“This beautiful and subtle book illuminates and grounds us in the truth that meditation and the practice of loving awareness are an ‘in-the-body’ experience.” – Frank Ostaseski, author of The Five Invitations
After experiencing strong intimations of the spiritual as a teenager, Martin Aylward traveled to India at the age of nineteen to explore meditation. He spent most of the next five years in monasteries, ashrams, and meditation centers in India and Thailand, including two years in a hermitage in the Himalayas with one of his teachers. As well as having the good fortune to learn from and practice with many different teachers, both Asian and Western, Martin has spent much time in solitude with his real guru, Nature—and his teaching often emphasizes contact with Nature as a resource for Awakening. In 1995 he co-founded the Tapovan Dharma Community in the French Pyrenees with his wife Gail. Gradually, the number of visitors increased beyond the capacity of the place, and in 2005—just ten years after opening—they relocated to Le Moulin (Moulin de Chaves), a former Zen monastery in the Dordogne, Southwest France, where Martin and Gail continue to live with their two children. In addition to guiding Dharma practice at Le Moulin as resident teacher, Martin has been invited to teach Dharma around the world since 1999.