Your Heart Was Made for This: Contemplative Practices for Meeting a World in Crisis with Courage, Integrity, and Love (Hardcover)

Your Heart Was Made for This: Contemplative Practices for Meeting a World in Crisis with Courage, Integrity, and Love By Oren Jay Sofer Cover Image

Your Heart Was Made for This: Contemplative Practices for Meeting a World in Crisis with Courage, Integrity, and Love (Hardcover)


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A practical roadmap to cultivating the heart’s capacity to face and transform our greatest challenges—like the climate crisis, oppression, anxiety, and burnout—from the bestselling author of Say What You Mean.

Meditation teacher Oren Jay Sofer shares a pragmatic guide to living a life of meaning and purpose in a time of great social, environmental, and spiritual upheaval. Through touching stories, insightful reflections, and concrete instructions, Sofer offers powerful tools to strengthen our hearts and nourish the qualities that can transform our world. Each chapter guides you to cultivate a quality essential to personal and social transformation like mindfulness, resolve, wonder, and empathy. You’ll learn ways to:
·         Find more choice and freedom in life
·         Strengthen focus, sustain energy, and accomplish goals
·         Identify burnout and take steps to renew yourself
·         Imbue your daily activities with clarity and vitality
·         Respond more effectively to collective challenges
OREN JAY SOFER teaches meditation and communication internationally. He holds a degree in comparative religion from Columbia University and is a Certified Trainer of Nonviolent Communication and a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner for the healing of trauma. Oren is also the author of several books, including the best-seller Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication and his latest book, Your Heart Was Made for This: Contemplative Practices to Meet a World In Crisis with Courage, Integrity, and Love. His teaching has reached people around the world through his online communication courses and guided meditations. A husband and a father, Oren lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he enjoys cooking, spending time in nature, and home woodworking projects.
Product Details ISBN: 9781645472001
ISBN-10: 1645472000
Publisher: Shambhala
Publication Date: November 21st, 2023
Pages: 304
Language: English
“In Your Heart Was Made for This, Oren Jay Sofer offers a beautiful and poignant invitation to meet the crises of our current world and communities with the power of contemplative practice, which helps us to acknowledge the pain that we are all experiencing and reveals how we can respond directly with awareness and tenderness.”
Lama Rod Owens, author of Love and Rage: The Path of Liberation Through Anger
“Using the Buddha’s teachings, coupled with skillful activism, Sofer outlines how we can all access a deep well of energy and resilience to support us in engaging with our most pressing challenges. This is the book we need right now to help heal the planet and care for one another.”
Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Life and Lovingkindness

“Your Heart Was Made For This brings the timeless wisdom of the Dharma to support us in the Great Turning. Whether you are new to contemplative practices or are a seasoned veteran, this book provides insights and concrete practices to help us come back to our whole selves. I can’t help but want my entire family to read this!”
Kazu Haga, author of Healing Resistance: A Radically Different Response to Harm

In each of these pages, you’re in the presence of a great teacher. Simply, warmly, and profoundly, Oren guides us to deepen inner strength, joy, and love, opening to who we already are. He offers a rare combination of penetrating clarity, powerful practices, and nurturing care throughout. Like other classics in psychology and spirituality, this book starts with a solid foundation, and then soars to the heights. What a gem.”
Rick Hanson, author of Neurodharma: New Science, Ancient Wisdom, and Seven Practices of the Highest Happiness

“In this uplifting and harmonizing treasure trove of wisdom, Oren offers tender and encouraging practices for our challenging times, and daily reminders of what we are made of. This book is a real-life companion.”
Ruth King, author of Mindful of Race: Transforming Racism from the Inside Out
“Clear, wise, and inspiring. Oren offers a raft of beautiful teachings and practices to awaken the heart, uplift the spirit, positively direct our lives, and embody our best selves.”
Jack Kornfield, author of A Path With Heart: A Guide Through the Perils and Promises of Spiritual Life
“Oren is a brilliant teacher. The teachings and practices in this book will lead to true inner fulfillment and a more compassionate and just society. A must-read for those seeking to cultivate authentic change from the inside out. Your Heart Was Made For This is exactly what our world needs at this moment in time.”
Kaira Jewel Lingo, author of We Were Made for These Times: Ten Lessons for Moving through Change, Loss and Disruption
“The falling apart of our known world can bring forward our spiritual strengths. Your Heart was Made For This guides us in responding to our societal confusion and suffering with skillful, wise, and caring hearts.”
Tara Brach, Author of Radical Acceptance and Radical Compassion
“Oren Jay Sofer’s book was made for this moment. Everyone I know is justifiably anxious (to put it mildly) about the state of our politics and our planet. And often, this anxiety leads us to turn away, or to act in ways that don’t change anything. Your Heart Was Made For This offers transformative, non-pollyannish practices of resilience so that we can remain engaged, balanced, and able to actually help.”
Jay Michaelson, author of The Gate of Tears: Sadness and the Spiritual Path
“In Your Heart Was Made For This, Oren Jay Sofer demonstrates the transformative potential inherent in Buddhist contemplative practices. Readers no longer have to choose between spiritual growth and social change. Through a lyrical blend of personal narrative, inspiring quotes, and concrete invitations to action, Sofer guides all readers, regardless of experience, on a journey that will reveal their capacity to respond powerfully and choicefully to the many crises facing our world today.”
Roxy Manning, author of How to Have Antiracist Conversations: Embracing our Full Humanity to Challenge White Supremacy
“I can't think of a contemporary book that creates such a beautiful interweaving of Buddhist teachings, healing practices, and social, racial, and environmental justice concerns. Sofer offers concrete guidance for flourishing in a way that connects the major issues of our time, all while being extraordinarily attuned to the needs of those with trauma, diverse socio-economic situations, and historically oppressed or marginalized backgrounds. I’ll be handing this book to young adults and students—spiritual seekers, beginners, Buddhists, and activists—for comprehensive answers to their many pressing questions.”
Sumi Loundon Kim, Buddhist Chaplain, Yale University
“Sofer calls us back to love as the focus of our contemplative practice. We are reminded that in stillness and silence, with each breath, we are reaching into our hearts and moving past a strong desire for individual improvement. Fortunately, Sofer guides us on a path in which we can discover our deepest humanity.”
Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, author of Opening to Darkness and The Shamanic Bones of Zen
Your Heart Was Made For This is a captivating and transformative read that delves into the depths of human connection and social transformation. Sofer’s profound insights and practical guidance illuminate the path to cultivating authentic relationships and fostering true understanding. With heartfelt wisdom and a gentle yet empowering approach, this book serves as an invaluable resource for anyone seeking to navigate the intricacies of the human heart and embrace the transformative power of contemplative practice to heal our world.”
David Treleaven, author of Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing
“We all have the great good fortune to receive and practice with Oren’s vast experience, mind, heart, and ability to explain complex dynamics with clarity. Often there are important ideas and concepts delivered to a reader and yet the question remains, “Well, what should I do with this?” Oren delivers just that—not only the what but also the how through practices and possibilities, in a world that is on fire. Oren, thank you for being so expansive, careful, and loving.”
JoAnna Hardy, meditation teacher, mother, and dog lover
“Oren Jay Sofer’s new book will offer meditators a practical overview that can help us take up this paramount skill day by day in our own lives. Sofer shares in an engaging style with which ordinary people like ourselves, trying to navigate the pitfalls of modern life, can relate with benefit.”
Michael Nagler, founder The Metta Center for Nonviolence
“There are many books about meditation and the importance of contemplative practices, but few that manage to remain contemplative-centered while drawing timely applications. That’s what Oren Jay Sofer’s book does so well. We highly recommend this book for everyone on the spiritual path, Buddhist or not.”
Spirituality & Practice

“Readers will take away from this gentle road map: how to build healing practices, strengthen what Sofer calls ‘heart qualities’ (by applying ‘patience, kindness, and ease’ in order to ‘etch those grooves deeper’ than the ones carved by anxiety and stress), and develop inner resources to meet challenges and create positive change. Your Heart Was Made for This is a softening—a hopeful solution in a time of overstimulation and the commodification of the mindfulness movement. This guide helpfully breaks down Buddhist teachings for both the well-practiced and the novice.”
 —Shelf Awareness, starred review