Tonglen is a classic spiritual practice for awakening and strengthening compassion. We expand the heart to embrace everything in the human experience. Swami Girijananda’s approach, which blends elements from both the Buddhist and Hindu tantric traditions, focuses on releasing us from our own suffering through what she calls “breathing in the dark and breathing out the light.”
Breaking down the steps of tonglen, she shows us how to face, befriend, and transform our darkness into light. First we learn to acknowledge our own darkness, our “stuff.” Next we separate those feelings from our stories about them. Finally we connect to the inner light of our own true nature and experience the natural transformation that takes place from within. The book includes seven distinct variations of this simple yet powerful practice, suitable for people at any stage of inner development.