Anita N. Feng. Wisdom, $16.95 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-61429-227-2
Jumping back and forth between present-day Boston and fifth-century B.C.E. India, Feng, a Zen teacher, invites readers to experience the joys and sorrows of the original Buddha and his 21st-century analogue, Sid. The original Siddhartha’s life is familiar: his sheltered privilege, his search for meaning and eventual enlightenment. In the modern version, Sid grows up protected from hardship by his father, a Harvard linguistics professor. Archetypal characters of the Buddha’s life—including his father, mother, wife, and nursemaid—have modern counterparts in Sid’s story, and their accounts provoke thoughtful questions about parenting, the pain of growing, leaving home, privilege, and dissatisfaction. In Feng’s telling, Sid’s survival after an accident is his catalyst for changing his life (akin to Siddhartha’s accidental encounters with old age, illness, and death). Accompanying Feng’s small chapters are poems and calligraphic drawings of important Buddhist animals, such as the rabbit and crow. Feng’s slight book is mythical in spirit and light in tone, making it accessible for Buddhists and non-Buddhists alike. Sid’s experience of enlightenment is a relevant one for an increasingly egocentric society; he does not become a famous teacher, but rather an individual who exudes curiosity and compassion for the world around him. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/22/2015
Release date: 09/08/2015
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 104 pages - 978-1-61429-242-5
Show other formats
Discover what to read next