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Meeting Faith: The Forest Journals of a…
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Meeting Faith: The Forest Journals of a Black Buddhist Nun (2004)

by Faith Adiele

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Stimulating is the best way to describe this book. In addition to the factual information about the Buddhist faith that Adiele provides, readers are given a narrative of her spiritual journey, as well. Adiele is a relatable narrator with whom the reader can relate, no matter one's background, social situation, or faith. Her self-discovery mirrors the desire to reveal what is innately human in all of us; in immersing herself in a completely foreign culture, Faith Adiele identifies those things. ( )
  Libby.Clephane | Apr 27, 2012 |
Wonderful testimony of faith and finding oneself. You do not have to be buddhist to read this book. ( )
  seki | Oct 25, 2006 |
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Epigraph
Ordination signifies death and rebirth for the candidate. He gives up family and friends, all former association, leaves off his old clothes, is shaved and ritually bathed, and finally receives a new name. -- Robert C. Lester, Theravada Buddhism in Southeast Asia (chapter one)
An act of meditation is actually an act of faith -- of faith in your spirit, in your won potential. Faith is the basis of meditation. Not of faith in something outside you -- a metaphysical Buddha, an unattainable ideal, or someone else's words. The faith is in yourself, in your own "Buddha-nature." You too can be a Buddha, an awakened being that lives and responds in a wise, creative, and compassionate way. -- Martine Batchelor, Meditation for Life (chapter two)
There is no longer anything or anyone to lean on. Essentially the ordained life means relying on the inner experience of the teachings without external props ... Western people who have been raised to function independently may find it easier to adjust to such a life ... [their] problems ... more often relate to discipline, emotional conflicts, and physical circumstances. -- Karma Lekshe Tsomo, Sakyadhita: Daughters of the Buddha (chapter three)
If I told my friends and colleagues that I was not only attending, the reporter secretly taking notes in the men's room, but buying into [a Buddhist retreat], feeling real spiritual change, I would probably find myself dropped from a number of invitation lists. -- Dinty W. Moore, The Accidental Buddhist (chapter four)
[Bangkok's] two most common and appealing sights ... were its holy men, in spotless saffron robes, and its scarlet ladies, by day, the monks evoke a vision of purity ... by nigh, the whole grimy city felt ... transformed as sequined girls sang the body electric. At least, so I thought, this day-and-night division would ensure that good was good, and evil evil, and never the twain should meet. -- Pico Iyer, Video Night in Kathmandu

(chapter five)

Thailand has over a quarter of a million monks and twice as many prostitutes. -- Rudolph Wurlitzer, Hard Travel to Sacred Places (chapter five)
Dedication
for Annie Phillips Slabach

&

Adanna Grace Adiele

&

Holly Joanne Hanson Adiele

the three who taught me faith
First words
Despite the name Faith, I'm an unlikely candidate for spiritual aspiration. -- from the Preface
January 26.
Quotations
It all seems terribly futile, but then again, this must be the part of the road that's warmest to a dog -- the middle.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 039332673X, Paperback)

A wry account of the road from Harvard scholarship student to ordination as northern Thailand's first black Buddhist nun.

Reluctantly leaving behind Pop Tarts and pop culture to battle flying rats, hissing cobras, forest fires, and decomposing corpses, Faith Adiele shows readers in this personal narrative, with accompanying journal entries, that the path to faith is full of conflicts for even the most devout. Residing in a forest temple, she endured nineteen-hour daily meditations, living on a single daily meal, and days without speaking. Internally Adiele battled against loneliness, fear, hunger, sexual desire, resistance to the Buddhist worldview, and her own rebellious Western ego. Adiele demystifies Eastern philosophy and demonstrates the value of developing any practice—Buddhist or not. This "unlikely, bedraggled nun" moves grudgingly into faith, learning to meditate for seventy-two hours at a stretch. Her witty, defiant twist on the standard coming-of-age tale suggests that we each hold the key to overcoming anger, fear, and addiction; accepting family; redefining success; and re-creating community and quality of life in today's world. 10 illustrations.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:21 -0400)

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W.W. Norton

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