The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger


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Manufacturers, suppliers and others provide what you see here, and we have not verified it. See our disclaimer. Listeners learn how to apply simple Buddhist principles to change their perspective, step by step, so that they can replace the anger in their lives with a newfound happiness.

Just as you spot a space, another driver races ahead and takes it.

The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger

In a world of road rage, domestic violence, and professionally angry TV and radio commentators, your likely response is anger, even fury. Now imagine that instead of another driver, a cow has lumbered into that parking space and settled down. Your anger dissolves into bemusement. What has changed?


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Not just the occupant of the space but your perspective on the situation. Using simple, understandable Buddhist principles, Scheff and Edmiston explain how to replace anger with happiness. They introduce the four kinds of demands that most commonly underlie anger Important and Reasonable, Reasonable but Unimportant, Irrational, and Impossible , then show how to identify our real unmet demands, dissolve our anger, and change what happens when our buttons are pushed.


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Only we can make ourselves angry. Specifications Publisher HighBridge Company. Customer Reviews. Average rating: 2. See all reviews. Write a review. Average rating: 4 out of 5 stars, based on 0 reviews. See more. Written by a customer while visiting librarything.

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Average rating: 1 out of 5 stars, based on 0 reviews. Ask a question. Pricing policy About our prices. We're committed to providing low prices every day, on everything. So if you find a current lower price from an online retailer on an identical, in-stock product, tell us and we'll match it. See more details at Online Price Match. Anger can also galvanize us to act on something we believe is morally wrong.

When you see someone abusing a child, a form of anger that may be called moral indignation arises. But if your remedy is pursued in hot-headedness, it may well worsen the situation. If you see a mother repeatedly slapping a child, you may want to interfere physically, perhaps even by hitting the mother. That may interrupt the abuse for the moment, but the mother may well add that provocation to her reasons for continuing to abuse the child at a later time. On the other hand, if you look at the available options with a cooler head, you may find a way to intervene that does not heighten the conflict between mother and child.

Sitting next to them in such a way that the mother is embarrassed to continue the abuse may provide a temporary solution, and may lead to a beneficial conversation without promoting further anger against the child.

To act out of moral indignation demands that we pause to consider the best options for putting the situation right. When we act solely out of anger, with little regard for consequences, we are not pursuing the greater good but are only assuaging our own emotional distress. And the result could make the situation worse rather than better. Certain disciplines, in particular the martial arts, teach that when you act out of anger you are more likely to lose. They see no space between becoming angry and expressing that anger. They believe that they have no control over and no choice about the anger they feel.

One of the lessons of this book is that we can consciously create a space between the rise of anger and the actions we take as a result. When you apply the techniques offered here with ongoing success, you are more than likely to feel an increase in self-esteem. No longer does your anger control you—you control your anger. It is quite possible—and even reasonable—that you may greet the foregoing ideas with skepticism.

The notion that you can do without anger may seem contrary to your conditioning, as it did to mine when I attended the teachings of the Dalai Lama, in Tuscon, Arizona, in There for the first time, I heard someone tell me that anger was destructive and that I could live without it. As a member of the notoriously contentious legal profession, I believed that anger was not only necessary and useful but also essential to my personality and sense of self.

For various reasons, I was seated in the middle of the front row for all four days of the teachings. If I missed a session or fell asleep, I was sure His Holiness would notice.


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  7. As it became clear that he was suggesting that my life would be better without anger, I became increasingly uncomfortable. I believed that anger was what protected me from a world that wanted a piece of me, that it gave me control over the people around me. So there I was, forced to pay attention to something that I did not agree with.

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    I still felt that way when I left the four-day seminar. The very next night I was driving home when someone cut so closely in front of my car that I was forced to hit the brake pedal. I honked the horn. The driver turned his head just long enough to scream an obscenity at me. I felt like ramming his car or at least shouting back in return.

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    But I stopped myself—it occurred to me that having spent four miserable days at the teachings, perhaps I should try to apply them. I asked myself what it was that made me angry, and understood that it was that this total stranger had disrespected me. I also recognized that his insult in itself was harmless; I was the one who was giving it meaning.

    She lives in Berkeley, California.

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    Leonard Scheff, a successful trial lawyer in Tucson, Arizona, is also a practicing Buddhist who, for the last fifteen years, has conducted seminars on managing anger. Anger is something we feel. It exists for a reason and always deserves our respect and attention. We all have a right to everything we feel—and certainly our anger is no exception. Harriet Lerner in her renowned classic that has transformed the lives of millions of readers.

    While anger deserves our attention and respect, women still learn to silence our anger, to deny it entirely, or to vent it in a way that leaves us feeling helpless and powerless. In this engaging and eminently wise book, Dr. Lerner teaches both women and men to identify the true sources of anger and to use it as a powerful vehicle for creating lasting change. For decades, this book has helped millions of readers learn how to turn their anger into a constructive force for reshaping their lives. Straightforward in its approach, yet profound in its effect, the principles outlined in this book teach partners new and startling strategies for making their marriage work.

    Gottman has scientifically analysed the habits of married couples and established a method of correcting the behaviour that puts thousands of marriages on the rocks. He helps couples focus on each other, on paying attention to the small day-to-day moments that, strung together, make up the heart and soul of any relationship. Packed with questionnaires and exercises whose effectiveness has been proven in Dr Gottman's workshops, this is the definitive guide for anyone who wants their relationship to attain its highest potential.

    Sign in. Hidden fields. Top charts. Get calm. Anger is toxic.

    Anger is in the eyes of the beholder. Using simple Buddhist principles and applying them in a way that is easy for non-Buddhists to understand and put into practice, Scheff and Susan Edmiston have created an interactive book that helps readers change perspective, step-by-step, so that they can replace the anger in their lives with newfound happiness. Based on the Transforming Anger workshop Shceff created, The Cow in the Parking Lot shows how anger is based on unmet demands, from the reasonable we want love from our partner to the irrational we want respect from a total stranger to the impossible we want someone to fix everything in our life.

    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger
    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger
    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger
    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger
    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger
    The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger

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