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Wide Awake: A Buddhist Guide for Teens Paperback – August 5, 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Perigee Trade; 1 edition (August 5, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399528970
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399528972
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,396 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

One of the recent trends in Buddhist publishing has been a subtle generation shift: we are now seeing second-generation Buddhists' memoirs as well as introductory books for teenagers and young adults. Into this latter category falls Diana Winston's Wide Awake: A Buddhist Guide for Teens, a well-written and basic primer for Gen-Ys who are asking Big Questions. Introducing concepts such as meditation, enlightenment, metta (lovingkindness), karma, the four noble truths and the eight worldly conditions, Winston writes accessibly but doesn't try overly hard to sound cool or relevant. Teens will appreciate the way she gives the dharma to them straight, while many adults will also benefit from this lucid manual.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Gr. 6-10. Switching between anecdotes of her own journey in Buddhism and advice on how teens can apply the Buddha's teachings to their lives, Winston offers a personal and thoughtful introduction to Buddhist thought and practice. The fundamental tenets of Buddhism are introduced through the lens of adolescence: finding karma at a high-school basketball game or promising that metta (loving-kindness) can free teens from anger toward siblings and parents (a miracle, indeed). Winston frequently quotes from teens she has met in her work at a Buddhist center in California, showing what they have learned from Buddhism on such subjects as skipping school. The writing doesn't rely on slang that will go out of style, but Winston's retellings of Buddhist sutras and stories are delightfully colloquial ("I want to understand life," the Buddha tells his father at one point. "I can't stay cooped up in this castle"), and her celebration of inquisitiveness and doubt will appeal to readers. Give this, along with Franz Metcalf's Buddha in Your Backpack (2002), to spiritual seekers intrigued by Buddhism. John Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Diana Winston is the Director of Mindfulness Education at UCLA's Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC) where she teaches mindfulness classes, trainings, and events for the public, as well as medical and mental health professionals, youth, and educators.

She is also a member of the Teachers Council at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Northern California and has been teaching Buddhist retreats since 2000.

Diana has been practicing insight meditation since 1989 when she first came across it in Thailand. She lived for a year as a Buddhist nun in Burma (Myanmar) where she shaved her head and ate only two meals before noon.

In 1993 Diana started teaching teens meditation and is one of the founders of the teen meditation retreat started at Insight Meditation Society and currently nationwide through MAYA-- Mindful Awareness for Young Adults.

She is the founder of the Buddhist Alliance for Social Engagement (BASE) with the Buddhist Peace Fellowship and is an advocate for socially engaged Buddhism, teaching the interface of Buddhism and social change nationally and internationally.

She is the author of Wide Awake, her book for teens, as well as co author with Susan Smalley of the upcoming Fully Present: The Science, Art, and Practice of Mindfulness. Her CD is Mindful Meditations, available on itunes.

Currently she is a new mom.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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His mom looked at it and said it was good.
D. Shane Gilley
I personally have not read it, but based on his comments, I would highly recommend this book!
Michele
I'm a freshman in college and got this book for an overview on Buddhism.
Cody

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 28, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful introduction to Buddhism. I have been sitting for several years and I am closer to middle-aged than teen-aged, but this book has a concise yet scholarly nature that presents Buddhist practice beautifully.
I want to buy this book for everyone I know, from my 13 year old god-daughter to my 93 year old grandfather. Diana Winston illuminates the beauty and difficulty of living honestly in the world. If I were to change one thing, I would make the subtitle read; "a Buddhist guide for teens and those who were once teens"
Thanks Diana!
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
Our son was in very hard times, struggling to come to terms with the low values (if values) of modern society, modern music and his own background and values. With 14 he went into extrem aggression and anger. He sought refuge in hard rap, which on one side helped to work anger off, but fueled it from another side.
Since he started to read (and practice) this book, he changed tremendously.
I highly recommend this book to any teenager (or parents who wish to find help) with the wish for help.
10 stars!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Shalimar on January 15, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been learning about Buddhism for a couple of years now and bought this book for my teenage daughter, in hopes that it would inspire her to join me. She hasn't read it yet, but I decided to pick it up off her shelf one day and read it myself. This book changed my life. It is written in very simple, easy to understand terms. I felt like Diana Winston was a good friend, walking the path with me and explaining things along the way. I loved it. And I am still hoping my daughter will join me!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
I was so excited to read a book that really speaks to me. I am a teen who is interested in spirituality and when I found this book I felt like I could learn so much about Buddhism and how it really applies to my life. I learned about meditation and am trying it in my home, and I see ways I can be less judgemental and live with higher integrity.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By David on February 27, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is pretty much as the Booklist review describes. It is worth noting that the book begins with lengthy forwards and prefaces which I found wordy, ponderous, and a bit moralistic. I began to fear the book would be the same. Not so! when you finally get to chapter one, the pace picks up and the tone and diction become lighter and much friendlier to a high-school level of reader. Far from being moralistic, the author deals with a variety of real issues that young people have to face, and does it in a frank, sensible, easygoing and very constructive fashion. The book should be a help and a comfort to many in its target audience.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By noah levine on August 5, 2003
Format: Paperback
THIS BOOK IS THE PATH TO FREEDOM! IT EXPLAINS THE DHARMA IN SIMPLE AND PRECISE TERMS. IT'S A HIGHLY ACCESSIBLE AND PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE SPIRITUAL JOURNEY. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BUDDHISM AND WILLING TO DO THE WORK TO FREE YOURSELF FROM CONFUSION THIS IS THE BOOK TO READ.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joyce on August 2, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
So far as I know, all available Christian guides for teens are written from a fundamentalist perspective. So, until someone of us writes one from a Christian Resurgence perspective I suggest this book as a useful spirit guide for Christian teens. The advantage of the Christian Resurgence perspective is its openness to learn from spirit resources of all traditions. Winston's experience as a Buddhist nun (for a year in Burma), in teaching meditation to young people for ten years in the U.S. and India (she inserts many comments from her students), and in founding and directing the Buddhist Alliance for Social Engagement, as well as her relative youth (under 40), enables her to understand teens as well as speak with the wisdom of experience. The book is a basic primer of Buddhism, including instructions for meditation. I particularly appreciated her explanation of the difference between discernment and judgment, the section on choosing friends wisely, and the chapters on finding right livelihood. She also covers the hot topics of dealing with emotions, sex, and intoxicants.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By marishka on March 19, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For someone surrounded by drugs and alcohol, society and pressures, a nasty parental divorce, and by the new hardships that come with being a teenager - sex, technology, bullying on all fronts, extreme appearance pressure, I turn to this book to help me balance my life again.
It is almost like a bible to me now, or the Big Blue Book from the Alcohols Anonymous program because it has little exercises for you to personally take inventory of your life - your own personal attachments, for example.
I am sixteen years old, and I searched for myself in drugs started at thirteen. But I am now a year sober, and I thank Buddhism very much for my love of living, love of myself, and gratitude for everything I have overcome and gratitude for everything I am so fortunate to have. I could not recommend this enough.
It will certainly change your life.
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