• Title: The Jew in the Lotus: A Poet's Rediscovery of Jewish Identity in Buddhist India
  • Author: Rodger Kamenetz
  • Released: 1994-05-01
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 304
  • ISBN: 0060645768
  • ISBN13: 978-0060645762
  • ASIN: 0060645768
From Library Journal Kamenetz, a poet and professor of Eng-lish, accompanied a group of eight Jewish leaders to Dharamsala in October 1990 for a Jewish/Tibetan Buddhist interfaith dialog that reinspired him both spiritually and as a Jew. The narrative reveals interesting parallels, thorny problems, and profound mystical insights as Kamenetz relates his encounters with Tibetan leaders, including the Dalai Lama, and with Jewish rabbis and cultural leaders. Highly recommended for all libraries.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kamenetz, a poet and a Jew, was invited to attend and write about a historical meeting between a delegation of American Jews and a group of Tibetan Buddhists that included the Dalai Lama. This interfaith get-together was inspired, in part, by the increasing number of Jews who have become Buddhists as well as the Dalai Lama's perception of Jews as "survival experts." The Dalai Lama felt that the Jews, experts in exile and the preservation of faith and practice, would offer advice and comfort; participating rabbis were intrigued by the surprising similarities between the two religions, including esoteric traditions and a profound awareness of suffering. Kamenetz not only chronicles the resultant discussions, which proved to be enlightening and emotional, but also profiles a number of Jewish Buddhists, including Allen Ginsberg and Ram Dass. As his investigation throws his own beliefs and assumptions into high relief, Kamenetz is amazed and humbled by the intensity and altruism of Buddhism. Kamenetz defines and comments upon these complex matters with skill, personableness, and a welcome dash of levity. Donna Seaman

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