5.0 out of 5 stars very nice clear synthesis, November 16, 2010


Robert W. Smith “Robert Smith, Ph.D.” (Virginia, USA) – See all my reviews

This review is from: Rebel Buddha: On the Road to Freedom (Hardcover)

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This book provides a very fine synthesis of many of the principles of Buddhism without so much of the jargon, dogma, and robes, if you will, of traditional Buddhist oriented books written by other easterners who are tied to a specific orientation. We don’t find that here. The author, acutely aware that much of the eastern language is an impediment to westerners’ understanding, seems to adeptly present techniques, some philosophy, and problems of cultural “integration” (my quotes). This is a refreshing read. I suspect that one of the major tasks in this 21st century is our understanding, appreciation, and acceptance of others’ approaches to spiritual growth. I found it refreshing, particularly, in that we didn’t get hung up on formalities and dogma found in most books. It is a concise description of spiritual growth. I think that most courses in comparative religion wouldn’t use this so much, as it is generally free from the bonds of a specific tradition. It is an example par excellent of how an eastern approach to spiritual growth can do so in the western world. I can see it being an excellent addition in courses on the psychology of religion and the sociology of religion. Psychologists and clients with an integral orientation, and some practicing Buddhists and philosophers of religion will also greatly enjoy and learn from this work. I always give books I review a grade, and I give this a solid, “A”. It comes highly recommended.