I happened to know this book, Snow in the Summer, nearly 15 years ago, once I started my journey to learn and practise Buddhism. At that time, I read the Vietnamese version of it. Then, I got to know about Sayadaw U Jotika and his teachings. Till now, I always considered that I was so fortunate reading the book in time, during my Buddhism journey — the happiness journey. Books are many. Yet many times, you don’t need that many. You only need to read the right one. And for me, this is it. 

Since I have started meditating, I re-read Snow in the Summer every year. Each time, it continues “exposing” the deeper layers of meaning that Sayadaw has “implanted” inside the book. How powerful and wonderful it is! For me, the book is like the bible for meditation. And much beyond that, it is like the code of living this life to the most of it, happier and more meaningful. I believe it is the same for whoever really pursue happiness, the ultimate goal of anyone of us.

I can’t express enough how thankful and how respectful I am for this ever great book from Sayadaw U Jotika. And that is my main driver to make it more accessible to people, whoever are suitable with its content and in need of it, which I believe many. While the content of the book is so available via the Internet in PDF format these days (you can Google it for “snow in the summer”), it’s almost not available in printing format on Amazon or other e-format like Kindle and audio book. What I’m trying to do here is to fill in those blanks. The other reason for me to promote e-format of the book is what I’d love  to borrow from Sayadaw U Jotika: “Paper is made from trees. If you love trees don’t waste paper.” In addition, it is easier to highlight, and take notes in Kindle.

I understand that Sayadaw U Jotika wanted that this book is a gift of Dhamma and must not be sold, commercialized or the like. Therefore, what I’d try to do is to make the content completely free to readers in Kindle format and audio format. By doing that, I hope it is able to reach a bigger audience base.

You can listen to the audio version of the book below. Or you can download the Kindle format version of the book from the link below.

Should there be any questions, issues, feedback, … regarding this Kindle format version, or the audio book version, email me at:  me@viethungnguyen.com.

May all the peace and mindfulness be with you.

P.S. The audio was generated by Natural Reader, a text-to-speech software.

Ven. Sayadaw U Jotika

Words from the transcriber: This dhamma talk from Sayadaw U Jotika is another time-less teachings from Sayadaw. Those simple teachings hold true over the time and serve as the core for any meditators, not just for the beginners as in the title. I got this dhamma talk from the Internet and it has no title. It was a talk Sayadaw U Jotika taught to a group of meditators during a retreat in Melbourne, on 09/03/1997. I has named the title as “Meditation for beginners”, based on the content and the aim of the talk. Yet, please note that the more I listen and read it, the more I meditate, the more I deeply realize the fact that, this is the critical teachings for even the most hard core meditators. I often call it “back to the basics”. And one more important thing is that the talk is very inspiring for whoever want to change your life for the better. I transcribed it here and will continue translating it into Vietnamese. Certainly, there may be in-corrections here and there, during the transcribe. But overall, the key points should be correctly written down. You can also refer to the original talk below. Enjoy the listening or reading.

I’m glad to see all of you. Some of you are new comers. I remember most of your faces. But I see some very young people here today. Are you here for the first time?

[conversations back and forth between Sayadaw and meditators]

I want to know if is there anybody here who has never meditated before, who is a real beginner? Oh, I see quite a few here today. Well, I want to tell you that once I was a beginner, that’s where we begin.

It was a long time ago when I was about 16. Long time ago. About thirty four years ago. So, I’ve come a long way, thirty four years is quite a long time. So, I want to welcome especially to those who are real beginners and also like to come here. Very glad to see you. Welcome, everybody.

So since there are a few people here who are really a beginner, today, I would like to talk about meditation from the very beginning. Actually, I want to have a kind of series of talks so that I can add more details, more ideas and keep it going. Maybe when I have time, I want to make a plan for that, because whenever you want to study something, you need a kind of plan, to have a plan to do that.

Continue reading “Dhamma Talk: Meditation for beginners”