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Lessons from the Monk I Married Paperback – April 3, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review


"Katherine Jenkins offers us a glowing jewel in this moving and uplifting book. She shares with us an abundance of wisdom and insight learned in the university of life. This beautifully written and compelling work is one to treasure and share with those we love."
—Allan Lokos, guiding teacher, Community Meditation Center, NYC, and author of Patience and Pocket Peace

"I was inspired by the wisdom in Lessons from the Monk I Married, entranced by its exploration of far-away places, and moved by Katherine's story of profound and irresistible love. It's a story that would force even the most jaded person to agree that there is, indeed, such a thing as a love that was meant to be."
—Noelle Oxenhandler, author of The Wishing Year

"Katherine Jenkins's beautiful memoir is a wonderful story of listening to one's heart through both hardships and joy alike."
—Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Happiness

"Jenkins’s writing is graceful and direct…in this gentle, earnest book" —Publishers Weekly

"This gentle book is full of surprises. Part memoir, part spiritual journey, this is written in an accessible and conversational style that should appeal to a wide range of readers…" —Booklist

About the Author

Katherine Jenkins is the author of the popular blog Lessons from the Monk I Married, which offers lessons based in the Buddhist tradition and drawn from her daily experiences. She is a regular contributor to Woman’s World Online Magazine, and the founder of Writers Rising, a blog she started for writers, which now has over twenty contributors.

Jenkins spent over eight years in South Korea, where she met her husband in 1996. That same year, she went to Nepal and joined a ten-day silent meditation course. That ten-day course changed her life and she has been practicing Vipassana meditation ever since.

Jenkins moved back to the States with her husband in 2006, where they became managers of the Northwest Vipassana Meditation Center in Washington State. During her time at the meditation center, she helped edit the book Letters from the Dhamma Brothers, which was featured on Oprah Winfrey’s Soul Series in October of 2008.

Today, Jenkins lives in Seattle with her husband, a popular yoga teacher and lecturer, and she teaches English as a Second Language at Edmonds Community College.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Seal Press; Original edition (April 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580053688
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580053686
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 7.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,561,696 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been reading Katherine Jenkins' blog since late 2009 and have followed all the trials and tribulations of getting this book into print and published. I've rooted for Kathy the entire time, silently (and sometimes with a blog comment) encouraging her not to give up, to continue her writing. I'm so glad she did. I received my copy of 'Lessons From the Monk I Married' this week. I loved every minute of reading it! While on the surface, it tells the story of how Kathy met Yoon and how their love affair developed, its underlying theme is one of gentle acceptance and understanding of one's self, as well as one's significant other. It takes courage to lay your life out there for the world to see, and this book is full of courage. I'm not sure what I find more inspiring and courageous...Kathy's beautiful love affair with her monk, her trek around Annapurna or the fact that she lived in a 'love hotel'! This book is a delightful, heartfelt read. And even though you know how the story ends, you still feel the tension...will their love survive? My favorite lesson..."There is no such thing as a meaningless coincidence." You'll have a favorite lesson, too!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I couldn't put this book down! Katherine Jenkins story is both unique and universal. A young woman, searching for answers to life's bigger questions, travels to a far away land and finds love in the most unlikely place and with the most unlikely person - a Buddhist monk! By not backing away from her own struggle, unflinchingly examining her own mind and senses, and surrendering to the higher powers of the universe, she takes you with her as she unlocks the doors of her heart. From beginning to end, you can't help but root for Jenkins. Her prose is accessible and endearing, and her story is filled with humor and humility as she illustrates the truism that your life is the only journey worth making.
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Format: Paperback
A Korean Buddhist monk by the name of Su Nim visits America for a bachelor party. After his night at Hooters, he seems disappointed by a bunch of "women with big boobs"-- it wasn't like the bachelor parties you see in movies.

This passage, somewhere midway in the novel, made me laugh aloud, drawing a couple of stares from passersby. But it's only one of the hundreds of moments in this book that made me either gasp, or laugh, or have to put down the book and just think for a while.

"Lessons from the Monk I Married" follows Katherine's long journey from working at a Seattle health club a few years out of college, to traveling to Korea in search of the life she thought she wanted, to climbing mountains into Tibet, to ashrams in India, to utter solitude as a teacher in Japan, to all across the states... you name it. Her meeting with a kind and quirky young Buddhist monk-- one who likes bowling and other surprisingly non-monklike activities-- breaks Katherine's expectations of spirituality, and the two eventually fall in love. Their relationship becomes complicated, needless to say (she wonders at one point the possible punishments for "corrupting" a prized monk,) but their journey together, which spans years and dozens of foreign landscapes, is entirely captivating.

The spirituality in the book is not overbearing or preachy to any degree. She simply conveys to the reader what she learns from her adventures and her wise, but also human, husband. Lovers of memoir will appreciate the honesty. Lovers of adventure will devour the excitement of crossing a tense Chinese-occupied border and the many dangers of traveling in uncharted, risky territory. You don't have to be a Buddhist, or spiritual to any degree, to enjoy a good story. And this definitely is one.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Lessons..." is a beautifully written book that captured my attention within the first few pages. Katherine's search for her mission in life is treated with insight, humility and humor. Her journey leading to "the Monk she married" was clearly filled with adventure and romance. I loved every page!
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Format: Paperback
Are you searching for peace and purpose in your life? Do you dream of travelling to the ends of the earth to find it?

Kathy Jenkins not only dreamed of it, she DID it! Lessons from the Monk I Married tells how Kathy Jenkins picked up and left the USA to teach English in South Korea - all by herself, without knowing a soul, and without really understanding why. She just knew there were answers for her there. And there were...

Reading Lessons from the Monk I Married, you quickly feel that you've made a new best friend. Kathy recounts her experiences and her feelings with the openness and authenticity that makes you feel like you've known her forever. She lets you see her vulnerability, all while showing her strength, her courage and her wisdom as it grows throughout her travels. From her first time at a meditation retreat to her journey through Thailand, Nepal, Tibet and India - you experience it as if you're there with her.

But it's not only the stories and the unlikely love that makes this book special. It's how the stories are interwoven with life lessons. Kathy organizes her stories into chapters with titles like Let Go of Expectations, Trust Your Inner Voice, Surrender to the Unknown and To be Happy Together, First Learn to be Happy Alone. These are some the things Kathy learned in her travels and some of the things you will become more aware of as you read this inspiring book.

Lessons from the Monk I Married is more than a memoir, more than a love story - although it is both of these. It is an outpouring of Kathy's soul that will inspire you to get in touch with your heart and live from the wisdom, the courage, the strength, the peace and the purpose that reside there.

Arlene Taveroff, PhD
[...]
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