Buddha at the Apocalypse: Awakening from a Culture of Destruction

Overview

Timely and Audacious, Buddha at the Apocalypse challenges us to look directly at the devastating assumptions underlying the very mechanisms of the modern world-and offers a clarion call to awaken from a pervasive culture of destruction into a natural, sustainable, and sane peace.

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Buddha at the Apocalypse: Awakening from a Culture of Destruction

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Overview

Timely and Audacious, Buddha at the Apocalypse challenges us to look directly at the devastating assumptions underlying the very mechanisms of the modern world-and offers a clarion call to awaken from a pervasive culture of destruction into a natural, sustainable, and sane peace.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Barry Magid
"The self-centered dream from which Kurt Spellmeyer strives to awaken us is not simply the dream of our individual ego but the dream of history. We must awaken from time itself, from beginnings, from progress, from goals and from visions of the end of time. Buddha at the Apocalypse challenges our assumptions about who we are, where we come from and where we are going, in our life and in our practice."
Robert Thurman
"Buddha at the Apocalypse is easy-going, well written, and solidly reasoned—and lively in the way it interweaves Biblical analysis, Zen literature, and Western philosophy and sociology with popular culture and deep wisdom. I am delighted to greet this important and meaningful work and wish its author and many readers a fruitful walk in its garden of perceptive insights and heartfelt advice."
Richard K. Payne
"Buddha at the Apocalypse is a bold investigation into the role of religion in the creation of the environmental crisis. Spellmeyer is refreshingly direct in his evaluations, writing a manifesto of environmentally concerned Buddhism. His writing is crisp and honest, raising hard questions that help us confront the highly politicized role of religion as an ecological force."
David R. Loy
"So often we see the future as something that will save us from the present—but what if our attempts to 'save the world' are based on the very way of seeing that is destroying it? Spellmeyer invites the reader to look differently at the nature of time itself, especially our belief in the inevitable benefits of Progress. A challenging and provocative book."
Robert Langan
"Spellmeyer's Buddha at the Apocalypse opposes two conceptions of time: the endgame finality of the Western traditions, and the no-game now here-all of Buddhism. He speaks for a crucial shift in attitude towards the world and our human place in it. We are not, he asserts, bound for destruction, but bound by illusions obscuring an interpenetrating infinitely complex plenitude of miraculous being in which time and self are variables. This is no mystical diatribe, but a gentle reflection by the light of a Zen moon which shows how the whole show is alive, how we cannot save the world, nor fundamentally destroy it, but how with compassion we can embrace our shared being. How we connect with each other this moment and this day is the world, even as the static moment flows away in a march of moments, yet here still moment unending. Spellmeyer speaks for a profoundly simple ecology of mind, where world and mind are seamlessly one, and your acts and mine do make a difference."
Noah Levine
"This book helped me to see our western culture more clearly, and inspired me to rebel against the Apocolyptic paradigm with renewed vigor."
From the Publisher

“The self-centered dream from which Kurt Spellmeyer strives to awaken us is not simply the dream of our individual ego but the dream of history. We must awaken from time itself, from beginnings, from progress, from goals and from visions of the end of time. Buddha at the Apocalypse challenges our assumptions about who we are, where we come from and where we are going, in our life and in our practice.”—Barry Magid, author of Ending the Pursuit of Happiness

Buddha at the Apocalypse is easy-going, well written, and solidly reasoned—and lively in the way it interweaves Biblical analysis, Zen literature, and Western philosophy and sociology with popular culture and deep wisdom. I am delighted to greet this important and meaningful work and wish its author and many readers a fruitful walk in its garden of perceptive insights and heartfelt advice.”—Robert Thurman

Buddha at the Apocalypse is a bold investigation into the role of religion in the creation of the environmental crisis. Spellmeyer is refreshingly direct in his evaluations, writing a manifesto of environmentally concerned Buddhism. His writing is crisp and honest, raising hard questions that help us confront the highly politicized role of religion as an ecological force.”—Richard K. Payne, editor of How Much is Enough?

“So often we see the future as something that will save us from the present—but what if our attempts to 'save the world' are based on the very way of seeing that is destroying it? Spellmeyer invites the reader to look differently at the nature of time itself, especially our belief in the inevitable benefits of Progress. A challenging and provocative book.” —David R. Loy, author of Money Sex War Karma and The World Is Made of Stories

“Spellmeyer’s Buddha at the Apocalypse opposes two conceptions of time: the endgame finality of the Western traditions, and the no-game now here-all of Buddhism. He speaks for a crucial shift in attitude towards the world and our human place in it. We are not, he asserts, bound for destruction, but bound by illusions obscuring an interpenetrating infinitely complex plenitude of miraculous being in which time and self are variables. This is no mystical diatribe, but a gentle reflection by the light of a Zen moon which shows how the whole show is alive, how we cannot save the world, nor fundamentally destroy it, but how with compassion we can embrace our shared being. How we connect with each other this moment and this day is the world, even as the static moment flows away in a march of moments, yet here still moment unending. Spellmeyer speaks for a profoundly simple ecology of mind, where world and mind are seamlessly one, and your acts and mine do make a difference.”—Robert Langan

“This book helped me to see our western culture more clearly, and inspired me to rebel against the Apocolyptic paradigm with renewed vigor.”—Noah Levine, author of Dharma Punx and Against the Stream

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780861715824
  • Publisher: Wisdom Publications MA
  • Publication date: 4/20/2010
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 985,976
  • Product dimensions: 9.04 (w) x 6.04 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Kurt Spellmeyer is an award-winning teacher and scholar in the English department at Rutgers University in New Jersey and a Rinzai Zen Master. He is the author of Arts of Living: Reinventing the Humanities for the Twenty-First Century and several other books.

Robert Thurman holds the Jey Tsong Khapa Chair in Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University. After education at Philips Exeter and Harvard, he studied Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism for almost thirty years as a personal student of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He has written both scholarly and popular books, and has lectured widely all over the world. As President of the American Institute for Buddhist Studies, he convened the First Inner Science Conference with His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Amherst College in 1984. He is also a founding trustee of Tibet House New York.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Robert A. F. Thurman Thurman, Robert A. F.

Introduction Welcome to the Apocalypse 1

Pt. I World Despising

Ch. 1 In the Beginning of History 19

Ch. 2 World Despising and the Origins of the Modern World 33

Pt. II World Embracing

Ch. 3 An End to History, an End to Suffering 51

Ch. 4 One Body - The Hidden Ground of Liberation 69

Ch. 5 From Revolutionary Thinking to an Ecology of Mind 87

Ch. 6 Images of Order in a Complex World 105

Ch. 7 On and Off the Road of History 123

Conclusion: Buddha at the Apocalypse 139

Notes 151

Index 167

About the Author 179

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