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Faces of Compassion: Classic Bodhisattva Archetypes and Their Modern Expression Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Wisdom Publications; Revised edition (June 15, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0861713338
  • ISBN-13: 978-0861713332
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,243,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

" Perhaps the most innovative aspect of the book is the way Leighton discusses modern bodhisattva archetypes.A modern spiritual classic." -- Spirituality and Health

"A clear-as-a-bell introduction to Buddhist thought." -- Zoketsu Norman Fischer, Senior Dharma Teacher of San Francisco Zen Center and author of Benedict’s Dharma

"Buddhist ideals embodied in flesh-and-blood people we can love, admire, and emulate—a sparkler among contemporary Buddhist writings." -- Brother David Steindl-Rast, O.S.B., author of Gratefulness the Heart of Prayer

"Faces of Compassion is a wonderful resource and source of guidance and teaching." -- Joan Halifax Roshi, Head Teacher, Upaya Institute

"Vigorous and inspiring, Faces of Compassion guides the reader into the awakening life within our contemporary world." -- Jane Hirshfield, author of Women in Praise of the Sacred

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Swing King on February 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book is a powerful work which introduces us to some of the most profound bodhisattva's in Buddhist cosmology. In "Faces of Compassion" Taigen Dan Leighton brings these prime examples to life, taking us through an explorative adventure of these bodhisattvas both ancient and modern. He shows us indeed what it might mean for us to personify some of these qualities the bodhisattva's and Shakyamuni have set forth.
Shakyamuni, Leighton points out, is not an archetypal bodhisattva in the way some of the others whom are discussed in this book are. He was a human being who had a profound impact on human history. But in another sense, the Buddha's life has elements within it that truly showed the way for the practicing the way of a bodhisattva.
In this book he also covers the controversial figure Daniel Ellsburg. Perhaps you are familiar with him, and perhaps you are not. During the Vietnam era, he released the Pentagon Papers. He had been an extremely important civilian official in the Defense Department, his proficiency was the dominion and management of our nuclear weaponry. He had access to knowledge the kind of which only a select few in our nation's government ever are privy to. In short, he released documents that showed U.S. administration officials had been lying all throughout the war, having decided ages ago that the Unites States could not be successful over there. Ellsberg released a top secret document he had prepared in 1971 to the New York Times. He is one of the most prominent, and unlikely figures, who stood up and against the horrible atrocities experienced during that war. He is an example Leighton gives us, of a modern bodhisattva. Enjoy this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Peter M. Schogol on June 27, 2010
Format: Paperback
In all due respect to reviewer Jeaniei, this book is not particularly difficult to read. In fact I would say that it treats a subject which could be quite technical in a straightforward, down-to-earth style. The book does deal with the Buddhist origin of the bodhisattva ideal, and in the process does introduce Buddhist philosophy, but does so in a way that a beginner can follow. I would hazard a guess that Jeaniei hasn't been exposed to Buddhism at all or else she doesn't appreciate it. Still, don't be put off by her review; this is not a difficult book to read if you are comfortable venturing into new areas of thought.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer L. Paxton on May 28, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book gives a clear breakdown and descriptive examples of Bodhisattva personalities that many Americans should be able to relate to. As such, I agree that this is an important text.

One aspect I like is that the book can be enjoyed in a non-linear format.
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By swimtime on May 20, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Thanks to the author for his hard and scholarly work to bring alive past lives that never passed. Or, learn about the boddhisatvas and learn about yourself. This dedicated and loving study applies the rigors of the university scholar to uncovering the teachings and practices of the path--covering with prose the poetry of zen, yet still brightening its light.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jeaniei on August 17, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had a very hard time following the language in this book. It wasn't written in a way could be easily understood or followed. I consider myself a very spiritual person and I understand the idea of the Bodhisattva as I had already done my own research on the topic. However, I had to put the book down after only a couple of minutes. I did not enjoy reading this at all and quickly lost interest.
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