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Killing the Buddha

Killing the Buddha

A Heretic's Bible

Now in paperback -- the book that caused a religious and critically acclaimed stir. Publishers Weekly called it "the most original and insightful spiritual writing to come out of America since Jack Kerouac first hit the road." The Buffalo News hailed it as "one of the most eccentric and fascinating books of the year." O, The Oprah Magazine said "This collection proves that fear and trembling are human, but a sense of humor is divine."
Peter Manseau and Jeff Sharlet have created a work of calling that is as odd, moving, and inspiring as the people and the scriptures they encountered. Whether it is Manseau and Sharlet telling their "psalms" from outposts as unexpected as a strip club or a cattle-auction barn, Peter Trachtenberg unraveling the Gordian logic of Job via the Borscht Belt, Rick Moody finding a modern-day Jonah in Queens, or Haven Kimmel shocking and thrilling us with her Revelation, what emerges is not an attack on religion, but a quizzical, fascinating look at it from the inside. Killing the Buddha is a positively riveting look at the facets of true belief.
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  • Free Press | 
  • 304 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743232777 | 
  • October 2004
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: GENESIS

Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew they were naked...

Genesis 3:7
By A. L. Kennedy

In the beginning, it's simple, all very clear -- you are and then know that you are and that's enough. But not for long. Eventually, you need an explanation.

My explanation starts with certain facts: that I was conceived in Australia, then born in Scotland at 3:57 A.M. on October 22, 1965 A.D. These are facts that I take on faith -- I can't remember anything about them.

Beginnings are particularly hungry for our faith. Our communal starting point -- too monumental to imagine and eternally... see more
{\rtf1\ansi\deff0{\fonttbl{\f0\froman Tms Rmn;}}\pard{\f0 }{\par}\pard{\f0
}{\par}\pard{\f0 Introduction: Mortal, Eat This Scroll!}{\par}\pard{\f0
}{\par}\pard{\f0 Late morning, just before lunch, one of Lin Chi's monks comes up to him half-crazed, out of his mind with ecstasy, babbling about Buddha. Says he's seen him. Says he was just walking down the road when suddenly: Buddhamind. Enlightenment. Nirvana. The big payoff. The monk can't stop talking about it. Lin Chi strikes a match, lights his pipe, takes a long drag. Leaves the monk hanging, waiting for his reward. Instead, Lin Chi blows a cloud of smoke, reaches out, and smacks... see more

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