Wake Up to What Matters: A Guide to Tibetan Buddhism for the Next Generation is a carefully curated selection of Dharma talks by Avikrita Vajra Sakya. Born in Seattle in 1993 into the Khon Family, Avikrita Vajra Rinpoche moved to northern India at the age of four to receive a formal Buddhist education, and became a Dharma teacher in 2012. His modern perspective and superbly accessible teachings in English have helped countless people to see how Tibetan Buddhism is just as relevant to those of us living in the fast-paced and technology-driven 21st century as it was to those in previous generations.
This book presents some of Rinpoche’s key teachings in printed form so that anyone can benefit from them, regardless of whatever time or geographical restrictions there may be.
In the Foreword to this book, His Holiness the Dalai Lama writes: ‘At a time when interest in Buddhist philosophy is increasing throughout the world, this book is an additional resource, making the knowledge accessible in a contemporary, readable manner.’
Wake Up to What Matters is not only accessible and readable, but it also presents the core concepts of Tibetan Buddhism in a way that makes their relevance to our modern lives crystal clear. Following a second Foreword by Rinpoche’s brother, Abhaya Vajra Sakya, and an Introduction by Rinpoche himself, the book presents eleven Dharma talks, each of which has been specially transcribed and edited for the printed page.
The opening chapter is about Buddhism for the Next Generation, and here Rinpoche explains that Dharma is a way of life – a way of wisdom and compassion which is for everyone, regardless of age, colour, creed, gender identity or any other factor. Discovering the Riches of Buddhism and The Miracle of Awakening are the titles of the following two chapters, and The Cause for Attaining Everything on the Path comes next, providing valuable teaching on bodhichitta.
Subsequent chapters present talks entitled Putting Aspiration into Action, Transforming the Mind, As Fearless as Tara, The Transformative Power of Compassion, Victory Over All Obstacles, Questions for the Modern Practitioner and Being a Twenty-First Century Buddhist.
Whilst those who are familiar with the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism are unlikely to find any new concepts here, that isn’t really the purpose of this book. The purpose, as the title makes clear, is to provide A Guide to Tibetan Buddhism for the Next Generation, and in that is exactly what Wake Up to What Matters does in great style. We loved the contemporary language and examples that were used throughout, and we have no hesitation in recommending this volume to anyone who could benefit from a fresh and exciting perspective on proven principles.