Arousing the Goddess: Sex and Love in the Buddhist Ruins of India

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"[T]he only subjective account of a mystical experience induced during ritual tantric sex ever written. That Ward experienced it, and that this experience was profound, there seems little reason to doubt. . . . Diabolically funny at times, this is also a brave, wise, and brilliant book."—Toronto Star

"This book is . . . about learning. Its great strength, aside from its finely crafted prose, is Ward’s honesty about what he learned . . . The process of acquiring wisdom provides the narrative with its dramatic muscle . . . risky, bracing stuff."—The Globe and Mail

Tim Ward spent six years in the Orient wandering the Dharma trail. He visited temples and monasteries, desert ashrams, and mountain top holy places, seeking out monks and mystics.

In this, his third and most sensual book, Tim falls in love with Sabina, who has come to India to research the temptation of the Buddha by Mara (Hinduism’s devil) and his three daughters. The Buddha overcame his final temptation, in the moment before Enlightenment, by touching the earth beneath him, and asking the Earth to bear witness to his Realization. The Earth Goddess rose in his defense. For her thesis, Sabina must record and photograph rare Buddhist statues bearing this scene. Tim accompanies her as her assistant.

A mixture of sex, love, coming of age, and Buddhism, Arousing the Goddess is filled with humor and recognition of the absurdities of life. It has been praised for its honesty and insight.

Tim Ward is the author of What the Buddha Never Taught, which was a best-seller in Canada, and a Book of the Month selection in the United States. He has written for a variety of publications, including Reader’s Digest, The Toronto Globe and Mail, Common Boundary Magazine, and several Traveler’s Tales anthologies. He is president of Intermedia Communications Training, Inc., in Maryland where he lives with his -family.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
At age 26, Ward (What the Buddha Never Taught) left the woman he had lived with for two years in his native Canada and entered a Buddhist monastery in Ladakh, India. After three months, he left to travel throughout India, with the purpose of finding out how poverty and spirituality coexist there. Instead, he fell in lust with Sabina, an Austrian doctoral student. They had a sexual encounter so intense he believed that it might have been a Tantric experience, a complete spiritual union of the male and female poles of existence. In this chronicle of their travels together, three threads are developed: Ward's obsession with Sabina and his desire to turn sexual desire into spiritual attainment, a discourse on the purposes of Tantric sex and of the goddess Kali's meaning in Hindu spirituality, and a travelog depicting the poverty and human degradation he finds in India. On one level, this is an entertaining story of sexual desire set in an exotic locale and based on the spiritual eroticism of Tantric practices. On another, it suggests that both the horrors and the blessings of life are to be accepted equally and that such acceptance is vital to real spiritual growth. This memoir-part of publisher Monkfish's debut list in spirituality-is recommended for public libraries.-Jerry Shuttle, East Tennessee State Univ., Johnson City Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780972635738
  • Publisher: Monkfish Book Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 10/1/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 258
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Flying High in the Age of Destruction: Ladakh 1
Chapter 2 The Earth-Touching Gesture: New Delhi 15
Chapter 3 Green Grass, Many Cobra: Varanasi 35
Chapter 4 Fire Beneath the Skin: Patna 57
Chapter 5 The Devil's Daughters: Vaishali 75
Chapter 6 Death of the Mother: Patna 91
Chapter 7 The Gentle Grinding of the Millstone: Nepal 101
Chapter 8 Spiders in the Bodhi Tree: Bodhgaya 119
Chapter 9 Backroads of the Dharma Trail: Eastern Bihar 131
Chapter 10 The Boy with No Arms: Calcutta 143
Chapter 11 Tantric Sex: Calcutta 157
Chapter 12 A Kali Christmas: Calcutta 171
Chapter 13 Dirty Jokes: Orissa 185
Chapter 14 Arousing the Goddess: Mamallapuram 199
Chapter 15 Elephant Poop Happens: Mysore 213
Chapter 16 The Circle Breaks: Gangtok 231
Glossary 241
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