Following-up on one of Eric's posts about good meditation-related readings, here are a few that I have read and found particularly helpful over the last several months:
"Real Meditation in Minutes a Day" by Joseph Arpaia and Lobsang Rapgay (the first guy is a psychiatrist and the other a psychologist and they both run meditation-based therapy clinics).
"A Practical Guide to Buddhist Meditation" by Paramananda
"Minfulness in Plain English" by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana - ("Bhante G", as he is known, is the head abbot of the Bhavana Society, a forest monastery and meditation center in West Virginia where I have gone on retreat a couple times. This book is probably the best introduction to Vipassana (insight) meditation that I have read. He has also written a follow-up book called "Beyond Mindfulness in Plain English" which I haven't read yet because I'm not quite at that point:)).
Another book that I recently read that is not a meditation instruction manual, per se, as much as it is an excellent discussion of how meditation can, over time, inform and enhance our daily lives long after we've gotten up off the cushion is "The Wise Heart" by Jack Kornfield.
Another good book that I am currenty reading is "Living Buddha, Living Christ" by Thich Nacht Thanh in which he draws parallels between Christianity and Buddhism and argues that they can be usefully integrated together in one's spiritual life.
Finally a really GREAT collection of essays for anyone facing difficult times is called "In the Face of Fear: Buddhist Wisdom for Challenging Times." This book has become one that I refer to often.
See you all of Sunday!