Heartwork (★★★★☆)


Radhule Weininger   *   Shambhala   *   July 4, 2017   *   267 Pages

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Heartwork teaches how to practice compassion toward yourself and others through mindful meditation. There are a lot of personal stories in here, many from the author’s life—so much so that I would label this book as memoir, in addition to self-help. That’s not a bad thing, especially since, personally, I found Weininger’s stories to be interesting. But if you’re looking for straight instruction, you’ll want to look elsewhere.

Part 1 is all memoir. Part 2 teaches meditations that focus on pausing, stating intent, practicing self-compassion, and showing compassion to others. Each chapter in Part 2 begins with a story as an example and then gives step-by-step instructions for how to complete the meditation. The chapters end with journaling activities. Part 3 is a collection of real-life stories from Weininger’s clients who have used the meditations to help work through a variety of issues (e.g., money problems, work conflict, anger, self-hate, family drama, etc.).

We must wait for difficulties to arise and then attempt to practice with them. And who creates such opportunities? Not our friends, of course, but our enemies.

— Dalai Lama

Overall, I liked this book. I could have done with less of Weininger’s personal story—interesting as it was—but I still found her instructions for the different meditations to be helpful. I especially liked the Mindful Pause practice. That one brought me the most peace.

I also really appreciated the emphasis on how connected we all are to each other. She says our own health and well-being can’t be separated from the health and well-being of others, so it’s important to send love and healing out to everyone if we want to feel calm and happy within ourselves. It’s a message that makes sense to me, and it was nice to learn some practical ways to make that happen.

Advanced Reader Copy provided by publisher through NetGalley.



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