Living the Season (Paperback)

Zen Practice for Transformative Times

By Ji Hyang Padma

Quest Books, 9780835609197, 176pp.

Publication Date: October 1, 2013

List Price: 14.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


As the Rig Vedas and Buddhist sutras foretell, as well as the Hopi and Mayan calendars, we are in the midst of complete transformation--ecologically, economically, politically, culturally. This graceful introduction offers creative safe passage through the sometimes overwhelming transition, drawing on ancient and contemporary spiritual practices particularly useful for these times. The endings we experience are always the beginning of something else. Hence author Ji Hyang Padma organizes teachings around the four seasons. In living connected to natural rhythms--the stillness of winter, the renewal of spring, the ripening of summer, the harvest of autumn--we touch a wholeness that is the source of healing and happiness. Practical exercises at the end of each chapter promote this state of being and bring the mind home to its innate clarity. Ideally suited to anyone experiencing personal change--through career, relationships, or world events--the book provides a way into Zen for beginners as well as a refresher for the more advanced.

About the Author

Ji Hyang Padma combines an academic career as Director of Spirituality and Education Programs at Wellesley College with her role as a Zen teacher. Ji Hyang has done intensive Zen training and teaching in Asia and North America for 20 years, 15 of these as an ordained nun. She has completed several 90-day intensive retreats in Korea and North America. She also teaches Zen workshops annually at Omega Institute and Esalen Institute. While her practice has been situated within the Korean Zen tradition, she has had the benefit of studying with teachers across a wide spectrum of Buddhist lineages.

Ji Hyang has also served as Director and Abbot of Cambridge Zen Center, one of the largest Zen Centers in the country. Additionally, she has served as a meditation teacher at Wellesley College, Harvard University and Boston University. She is gifted at finding an entry-point into practice for people who are just beginning their journey.

Currently Ji Hyang is completing a Ph.D. in Transpersonal Psychology at Sofia University with a research focus on Buddhist practices of healing. She serves on the board of Education as Transformation, an international organization that works with educational institutions to explore the impact of religious diversity and the role of spirituality in the learning process.

Ji Hyang's recent writing has been published in Our Neighbor's Faith: Stories of Interfaith Encounters and Arts of Contemplative Care: Pioneering Voices in Buddhist Chaplaincy and Pastoral Work.

Praise For Living the Season: Zen Practice for Transformative Times

"Ji Hyang Padma applies the practices of Zen Buddhism to dealing with the stress of change in a gentle, realistic way. For customers who have reached their coping limits, this book will show them how to find the circular path back to peacefulness. Beginner-friendly, it covers complex, spiritual philosophy in everyday language." --Anna Jedrzewski, Retailing Insight

"Combining psychological theories with Zen teachings to help guide others toward self actualization, Padma motivates people to maximize personal growth and self enhancement." --The Wellesley News

"Living the Season contains teachings from Zen and other traditions to assist at times of in transition. I got a copy recently and found that it's a great resource when you're going through trying times. I think her book and the teachings it gives about mindfulness, energy, and getting back to nature can be very helpful during these times. Just as nature has its transitions and seasons, so do our personal and professional lives and we can't fight this." --Zen Entrepreneur

"I feel quite certain I've never encountered a Zen book quite like Living the Season. Often Ji Hyang Padma shares stories from her own life and own experiences making Living the Season part memoir. Once Ji Hyang Padma gets you meditating the sky is the limit. Literally. One of the exercises is sky gazing! Ji Hyang Padma's writing is sincere in acknowledging what most of us already know, we're in a time of upheaval and change. Her message is to understand how we're all connected and work to be of service to each other and also be of service to our planet. All of this is conveyed in her beautiful voice, filled with authenticity. Living the Season is a story, a Zen practice, and a mission statement, not to be missed." --Rebecca Elson, The Magical Buffet

"Living the Season is an introduction to meditation for people who are attracted to the serenity they sense in Buddhism but are intimidated by the actual "practice" part of practicing Zen. In it [Padma] describes her own initial foray into Zen Buddhism, which started through her college practices of aikido and shiatsu. 'My greatest mentors in shiatsu and aikido had active meditation practices,' she explains, which made her want to try meditation too. After college she took up residence at a Zen center and devoted herself to meditation and compassionate action. That spirit of compassion pervades the book she's written, which aims to help people like me with little or no meditation experience begin on the path." --Jana Reiss,