"Bob Sharples offers equal parts practicality and inspiration through grounded step-by-step techniques for calming the mind and opening the heart—not just on the cushion but for every moment of our busy lives. A great primer for anybody with a body, a mind, a heart and a bit of curiosity."—Cyndi Lee, author of OM Yoga
"This book speaks to the reader in a warm voice and simple language for understanding the often confusing topics of meditation and relaxation practices. It is a good and friendly introduction for exploring the landscape of the inner life."—Dr. Jeff Brantley, Duke Medical School, author of Calming Your Anxious Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You from Anxiety, Fear, and Panic
"There's a very large and growing body of scientific research on the medical and psychological benefits of relaxation exercises and meditation. Until now though it's been difficult to find a clear, accessible book that introduces readers to the whole range of exercises from this inner science of training the mind. Sharples book provides clear, practical, understandable guidance to methods for physical relaxation, training attention, increasing mindfulness, visualization, healing meditations, and increasing positive emotions. For those new to such practices, Sharples' book will be a great introduction, and for more exerienced practitioners it will provide a reminder to reconnect with practical approaches to deepen their meditations."—Lorne Ladner, author of The Lost Art of Compassion
"Non-Dogmatic, ecumenical, comprehensive, pragmatic! Bob Sharples' book, Meditation and Relaxation in Plain English, is one I can recommend without hesitation or qualification to all those who seek information about meditation practice and who are turned off by sectarian proselytizing! I especially am grateful for his emphasis on the necessity to integrate relaxation into meditation practice, an aspect too often ignored or even denigrated. You can bet it will be on the recommended book list I offer my students."—Frank Jude Boccio, author of Mindfulness Yoga
"Meditation is a vast field, offering many methods and approaches, and it can be difficult to know where to begin and how to make meditation an integral part of our life. Bob Sharples has written a book that will surely help. [.] Meditation, especially meditation based on relaxation, is helpful for those who struggle with difficult life problems or chronic pain and other health concerns. But there is much more. Meditation can open our heart, awaken and transform our minds.
The potential for meditation to improve our life experience is presented with a dose of realism. Meditation will call for discipline, regularity, and commitment. In addition, suggestions are given about practicing with a teacher or a group, making time for practice, what location is best, posture, and what type of practice to try. The instructions in this book are encouraging and empowering. [.] Sharples has included ten guided exercises and meditations. These may get us started with meditation, but have a depth that experienced meditators will also appreciate. [.] For its guidance and kind encouragement this book should have a place on many meditators' bookshelves."-Wildmind Newsletter
"Sharples' writing is easy to digest and positive without being syrupy. When he explores the merging of physical and intellectual exercises, it is an extraordinary marriage of body and mind into the common goal of healing. ...For those who stick with Sharples' lessons and absorb his approach to the world, the results can be highly rewarding."—New York Resident