The Science of Enlightenment by Shinzen Young

When I first started this audio, I was impressed by the approach.  I kept whittling away at it in the mornings and evenings until I worked through it, but the further I went, the less impressed I was, and the more I realized that most of what’s here is common sense.

Perception defines reality.  It is common sense… if you’re already familiar with spiritual practices and exercises, which I am after years of study.  Even so, there are a great many people who aren’t and are looking for a way in that’s not intimidating or religious-specific.

This audio is essentially a series of recorded seminars.  Shinzen Young’s training is in the Buddhist tradition.  The Dalai Lama himself is on record as saying that if science proves Buddhism to be wrong, then Buddhism must change.  This is but one of the many reasons I respect the tradition.  Having said that, Young’s approach is to take the science behind the practices and beliefs presented herein, discussing them in as simple terms as possible, and along the way he presents the parallels from other traditions, be it Christianity, Judaism, or whatever else.  In other words, mysticism trumps dogma, and when you scratch away at the dogma to reveal the mysticism, you find “truths” that are consistent with verifiable science.  Mysticism is just spooky language designed to ensure that truth-seekers really are seeking the truth.  It’s an age old legacy of secrets.  But here in the modern age, we have very little use for mystery schools, so Young’s approach is basic straight talk and introduction to the foundations that bridge the gap between science and spiritualism.  He reveals an understanding of why things work as they do, without the baggage.

Mileage may vary, of course, but I found this to be a solid foundation to work from.  As many books and audios as I’ve gone through on topics such as this, it never hurts to gain new perspectives and reinforce what those perspectives have in common.  For the logically-minded, this is a winner.

4 stars


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