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Basic Buddhism Through Comics Paperback – April 10, 2010

4.1 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Writer and illustrator Mitsutoshi Furuya is one of the most popular comic artists in Japan. He is well-known for his 1970's series called oDame Oyaji.o
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 198 pages
  • Publisher: Rissho Kosei-Kai International (April 10, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984204407
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984204403
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #641,797 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Zack Davisson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 16, 2010
Format: Paperback
Buddhism is easy to understand, and easy to embody. That is the real message of "Basic Buddhism Through Comics." The book seeks to take complicated ideas and rephrase them in everyday language, using everyday examples, to bring a small slice of enlightenment into the lives of curious readers.

Manga artist Furuya Mitsutoshi is best known for his parody of Japanese family life in his comic "No-Good Dad" (Japanese title "Dame Oyaji.") In that series, he reversed the standard roles in the Japanese family by showing a weak and ineffective father and a strong domineering mother. In this comic he uses a similar sequence of family dramas to illustrate the basic tenants of Buddhism.

One thing this book is definitely not is "Buddhism for Kids." The family dramas that Furuya uses to illustrate the Dharma are very adult; a lonely housewife who can't get her family to acknowledge her. Another woman whose husband is a drunken slob who never works. A loud-mouthed businessman who thinks he already knows all the answers. A married couple who fight over money. Each of these characters in turn is introduced to a friendly Buddhist monk who shows them how following the path of Buddhism they can improve their lives and find happiness.

And Furuya takes these lessons seriously. There is nothing of the history of Buddhism here, no esoteric mustering on after-lives and reincarnation, no thousand-armed Kannons or smiling Hoteis. Instead he focuses on the Dharma, the rules of daily life laid down by Shakyamuni Buddha. The Three Seals of the Dharma. The Four Noble Truths. The Eightfold Path. The Six Paramitas that Lead to Spiritually Rich Living. He shows the connections between these truths, the connections between all things, and the right way of living that brings happiness.
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Format: Paperback
This comic lays out the basics of a certain sect of Buddhism well, methodically, and carefully and with humor and very basic human situations to illustrate each set of teachings, based on the Four Noble Truths and extrapolating from there in quite a bit of detail. Some reviewers found it too complicated to be of use, but it rewards several re-readings. What I'm not crazy about is that these particular teaching forms seem to be tied to Nichiren Buddhism (Hi! Have you heard of Nam Myo Ho Renge Kyo?). The kind where you have to chant the foregoing in front of your gohonzen and pray for money or a new car or whatever. Basic Buddhism as a philosophy and practice can be focused on a daily meditation practice, and the observance of the moral or ethical practices, which seem to boil down to telling the truth, putting others before self, not stealing, not being sexually unethical, etc. However, this is a nice book that balances all the complexity with simple, easy-to-grasp illustrated situations and stories--all just a little too pat, but gives you the ideas in a nutshell.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Not knowing much about buddhism other than reading books on Zen ,and some information about Tibetan studies, I bought this book with the idea it would be helpful in understanding the precepts of the faith. I had no idea there were so many rules to Buddhism! It's been around 500 years before Christ, so has had time to add more rules, and have they ever. This volume is a book for children and adults alike ,and if I were a child, it would be turned off by all the "laws" presented. The book presents a story line concerning a woman who has an alcoholic husband, and tries to expound on how to deal with him in the Buddhist way. By the time they finished the story, I was ready to boot the husband out of the house rather than see things the way a good buddhist would.
I found the book tedious and long winded and took a long time to get to the point on many issues presented. I would not recommend this volume to a child or adult, for that matter. I read the whole book, but felt discouraged by the whole idea when I finished.
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By CaseyLP on January 14, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great art, understandable story. We bought this for our son so he is knowledgeable and well rounded. Great tool for teaching children of all ages, and beautiful story.
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