- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group; New Ed edition (September 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0751533556
- ISBN-13: 978-0751533552
- Product Dimensions: 4.8 x 0.5 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,555,515 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Essence of Buddha: The Path to Enlightenment Paperback – September 1, 2002
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I love this book because it has changed my life, enlightened me to the essence of Buddhism and given more meaning to living a life of making efforts, becoming a better person and helping others in the world. From my understanding of the essence of Buddhism, it is simply taking suffering that exists in life and changing it into serenity, bliss and happiness through the light of enlightenment: understanding the Truth of existence and why we live. We can only do this through deeply exploring our true nature within. So, Buddha gave us the Eightfold Path that leads to that natural state that resides in all of us. This book guides us onto that path in simple terms. If you are open-minded, are willing to learn more about Buddhism, and wish to transform your life from one of suffering into one of serenity, then I would wholeheartedly recommend this book to you.
...with love, light and happiness,
I would highly recommend this book to people of all ages, who are in search of an enlightening experience!
However, the history about the founder of Buddhism is pretty much what you already know if you had bought other books on Buddhism. The other talk about other dimension is pretty unheard of to me.
Overall, if you did not understand about what is the meaning behind the void and emptiness, buy this book. Although buying this book for that only is really not worth it. There are other book about Buddhism better than what is written by the author in this book.
However, it wasn't long before I had serious misgivings.
If you've read enough books on Buddhism, listened to enough Dharma talks, etc, then you'll probably, like me, end up knowing at least some basic facts about the Dharma and stories from the Buddha's life, etc.
I quickly noticed that some of Okawa's accounts of stories from the Buddha's life seemed quite a lot different to what I remember coming across before. I began to wonder how good Okawa's grip on the basic facts really is.
It soon became apparent that Ryuho Okawa's version of many things often errs way off from the norm.
His book is liberally peppered with other, stranger stuff - he frequently writes about extra-dimensional worlds, ninth dimensional Grand Tathagatas and other similarly unconventional concepts. Not only that, but it's all described pretty matter-of-factly, the way that most of us would talk about mundane objects like tables and chairs.
I was quite soon pretty disillusioned with the book, but carried on the end (it's quite a short book), just to see what other things he would come up with. "Mumbo jumbo" is a term that crossed my mind to describe much of it.
The author does claim that he "possesses the same transcendental powers as Shakyamuni", so perhaps he really does know what he's talking about.
On the other hand, from my perspective as a mere mortal wandering through samsara, I have serious doubts.
If you want to read a good book about Buddhism, then I'd advise avoid this one - there are plenty of excellent alternatives available out there.
If you're looking for a book about Buddhism combined with a good dose of, er, mumbo jumbo thrown in, then this is it.