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Breakfast with Buddha (2007)

by Roland Merullo

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1,0194819,921 (3.73)77
Fiction. Literature. HTML:"Enlightenment meets On the Road in this witty, insightful novel." ‚??The Boston Sunday Globe
When his sister tricks him into taking her guru on a trip to their childhood home, Otto Ringling, a confirmed skeptic, is not amused. Six days on the road with an enigmatic holy man who answers every question with a riddle is not what he'd planned. But in an effort to westernize his passenger‚??and amuse himself‚??he decides to show the monk some "American fun" along the way. From a chocolate factory in Hershey to a bowling alley in South Bend, from a Cubs game at Wrigley field to his family farm near Bismarck, Otto is given the remarkable opportunity to see his world‚??and more important, his life‚??through someone else's eyes. Gradually, skepticism yields to amazement as he realizes that his companion might just be the real thing.
In Roland Merullo's masterful hands, Otto tells his story with all the wonder, bemusement, and wry humor of a man who unwittingly finds what he's missing in the most un
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» See also 77 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
With many inspiring and funny moments, Breakfast with Buddha still goes on with Otto's receptive introspections way too long
and the finale ending felt wrong. ( )
  m.belljackson | Aug 22, 2023 |
I loved this book. Enlightening without being preachy. We all take so much for granted and need to open our eyes and appreciate the things that matter- love, family, etc. ( )
  KyleneJones | Apr 25, 2022 |
A great read, a spiritual road trip, a good man who is a little lost, has the opportunity to travel the US teaching a monk about the United States while he learns something from the monk along the way. Often funny and sometimes touching, I learned a lot reading it. ( )
  kevn57 | Dec 8, 2021 |
I enjoyed this novel very much. It was a slow, meandering read but the characters were well developed. I wanted to meet them, spend time hanging out with them. I would love to read more encouraging novels like this one that spends time with real people in ordinary circumstances. ( )
  ColourfulThreads | Feb 18, 2021 |
Otto Ringling is having a hard time processing his parents' deaths via car accident. He drives from New York to New Jersey to pick up his sister, Cecilia for the long drive to their parents' farm in North Dakota to settle the estate. (Cecilia is afraid to fly.) But she talks him into driving her friend, Volya Rinpoche instead to open a meditation retreat on her part of their inheritance. Otto is not pleased believing Volya is a scam artist taking advantage of his sister.

But over the long drive the very positive Rinpoche is able to help Otto open his heart and mind. And learn about himself, his life, his beliefs and misbeliefs. Otto comes to like, respect and admire Rinpoche, and understand what he is trying to do to help people.

Excellent novel about choosing your life's paths, spiritual, or superficial, loving or hateful, productive or wasteful, insightful or insensitive.

I truly believe most of us will benefit from reading this book. Its beautiful optimistic and hopeful message that changing for the better is possible, and results in true fulfillment.
  Bookish59 | May 21, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
Humor is a prelude to faith and
Laughter is the beginning of prayer.
--REINHOLD NIEBUHR
Like the lark that soars in the air, first singing, then silent, content with the last sweetness that satiates it, such seemed to me that image, the imprint of the Eternal Pleasure.
--DANTE, "Paradiso"
Genuine belief seems to have left us.
--WALT WHITMAN, "Democratic Vistas"
I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear.
--WALT WHITMAN, "I Hear America Singing"
Dedication
For
Arlo Kahn
and
For
Michael Miller
First words
My name is Otto Ringling (no circus jokes, please) and I have a strange story to tell.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Fiction. Literature. HTML:"Enlightenment meets On the Road in this witty, insightful novel." ‚??The Boston Sunday Globe
When his sister tricks him into taking her guru on a trip to their childhood home, Otto Ringling, a confirmed skeptic, is not amused. Six days on the road with an enigmatic holy man who answers every question with a riddle is not what he'd planned. But in an effort to westernize his passenger‚??and amuse himself‚??he decides to show the monk some "American fun" along the way. From a chocolate factory in Hershey to a bowling alley in South Bend, from a Cubs game at Wrigley field to his family farm near Bismarck, Otto is given the remarkable opportunity to see his world‚??and more important, his life‚??through someone else's eyes. Gradually, skepticism yields to amazement as he realizes that his companion might just be the real thing.
In Roland Merullo's masterful hands, Otto tells his story with all the wonder, bemusement, and wry humor of a man who unwittingly finds what he's missing in the most un

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When his sister tricks him into taking her guru on a trip to their childhood home, Otto Ringling, a confirmed skeptic, is not amused. Six days on the road with an enigmatic holy man who answers every question with a riddle is not what he'd planned. But in an effort to westernize his passenger---and amuse himself---he decides to show the monk some "American fun" along the way. From a chocolate factory in Hershey to a bowling alley in South Bend, from a Cubs game at Wrigley field to his family farm near Bismarck, Otto is given the remarkable opportunity to see his world---and more important, his life---through someone else's eyes. Gradually, skepticism yields to amazement as he realizes that his companion might just be the real thing. In Roland Merullo's masterful hands, Otto tells his story with all the wonder, bemusement, and wry humor of a man who unwittingly finds what he's missing in the most unexpected place.
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