Welcome to the UUFC Library. We maintain an in-church lending library for books and videos, available to members and friends. Materials that support the Seven Principles of Unitarian Universalism have been selected and organized into categories by Dewey Decimal System number, author, title and subject.

UUFC Library spotlighted book

Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn

This book is surprisingly simple in its design and its message—“mindfulness provides a simple but powerful route for getting ourselves unstuck, back into touch with our own wisdom and vitality.  It is a way to take charge of the direction and quality of our own lives, including our relationships within the family, our relationship to work and to the larger world and planet, and most fundamentally, our relationship with ourself as a person.”

Each short chapter offers an idea to consider, a question to direct the reader, and quotes from great thinkers, teachers, and poets that relate to the topic.

With insights from Thoreau, Whitman, Chuang Tzu, Lau-Tzu and many others, Jon Kabat-Zinn offers ways to see mindfulness meditation as a practice in being complete in the moment. 

Anyone who has practiced meditation, especially with our resident Buddhist Nun, Dr. Joan Andras, has experienced aspects of mindfulness meditation and will find familiar subjects and steps to practice, but need to hear again often as the world teems with chaos.

Kabat-Zinn reminds the reader how stopping, letting go, dwelling in the moment without judging or doing frees the mind to awaken. 

Joanie often explains that our Buddha nature is there in each of us. Part of finding it might be giving up the struggle to better ourselves and seeing the practice as a process of discovery, always with a gentleness and kindness towards oneself as we return the attention to the breath. 

I have another favorite book of humorous insights called “Giving up is all we have to hold onto.”  Kabat-Zinn’s book offers more ways to consider this message with further study to talk about and think about later.  It’s sort of a workbook to take to heart, along with the lessons we experience on Saturdays in Buddhist Studies or in the past when we worked with another master teacher.  Just coming back to the mind of a child as we open this book might bring those teachings alive again.

Kabat-Zinn offers some insights, some things to try, some exercises to experience if we like.  He elaborates on what we have already learned and teaches the same practices through several methods.  He spends some time explaining how the practice of mindfulness meditation might help us address many common personal and family issues, especially in Western culture where progress in work and social standing might drive how we value each day of our lives.

This book is for everyone-any age.  One quote Kabat-Zinn offers from Wu-Men explains, “If your mind isn’t clouded by unnecessary things, This is the best season of your life.”   As an introduction to mindfulness meditation, or as a resource for thoughts and practices that might intensify your personal experience, I recommend “Wherever You Go, There You Are.”