Sandy Boucher presents a distinctive and down-to-earth understanding of Buddhism. The book is a follow-up to the author's Turning the Wheel: American Women Creating the New Buddhism. Boucher believes that the basics of Buddhism — meditation, dharma study, compassion, the interrelationship of all life, and lovingkindness — are especially appealing to women. She discusses what she has learned from Ruth Dennison, her spiritual teacher, and the insights she gleaned during a six-week stay in a Sri Lanka nunnery. There's an excellent chapter on Kwan Yin, the goddess of compassion, and Tara, the goddess of action.

Throughout the book, Boucher presents examples of how Buddhist practice can bring peacefulness and insight into one's life. She ends with a directory of female Buddhist teachers throughout the U.S. and around the world. Opening the Lotus is a triumph of clarity and feminine wisdom.