Watching the Tree: A Chinese Daughter Reflects on Happiness, Tradition, and Spiritual Wisdom

Watching the Tree: A Chinese Daughter Reflects on Happiness, Tradition, and Spiritual Wisdom

by Adeline Yen Mah
     
 

From the bestselling author of Falling Leaves, a remarkable book of wisdom and spirit.

Somewhere it is written that every Chinese wears a Confucian thinking cap, a Taoist robe, and Buddhist sandals. In Watching the Tree, Adeline Yen Mah brings together the many influences on her life as a child of the East and as a student and adult in the West.

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Overview

From the bestselling author of Falling Leaves, a remarkable book of wisdom and spirit.

Somewhere it is written that every Chinese wears a Confucian thinking cap, a Taoist robe, and Buddhist sandals. In Watching the Tree, Adeline Yen Mah brings together the many influences on her life as a child of the East and as a student and adult in the West. Conveying a wealth of insight and experience, Adeline illuminates major aspects of Chinese customs and culture while weaving in stories of personal struggle triumph throughout her life.

Taking a step beyond her previous book, Falling Leaves, a powerful memoir set against the backdrop of political and cultural upheaval in China, Adeline explores the centuries-old Chinese traditions and their legacy in modern-day China and the West. With Adeline's provocative essays on Buddhism, the I Ching, Tao, Confucius, and their role in shaping Chinese thought, Watching the Tree inspires as it uplifts the soul, giving readers an unusual glimpse inside a culture that remains mysterious and often misunderstood.

In her sharp observations on Chinese food and medicine, yin and yang, Zen, and feng shui, Adeline enlightens readers with the mundane—an approach to healing an illness you might find at a Chinese grocery store—to the larger questions in life surrounding true happiness, health, and spirituality. Bridging the cultural divide between the East and West, these stories reveal the strength and peace of mind that comes from opening one's heart and mind to the wisdom and experience of our combined histories.

For anyone looking for a clearer understanding of Chinese culture and for inspiring personal stories that embody a life lived in the wake of Chinese tradition, Watching the Tree opens the door into a world of calm reflection, knowledge, and spirituality.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This brief but compelling book is basically a primer on Chinese culture. In 11 chapters, Mah (Falling Leaves: The True Story of an Unwanted Chinese Daughter) furnishes explanations of Confucius and Confucianism, Buddhism, the I Ching, Chinese herbs and medicines, feng shui, yin-yang, and the Chinese language, among other topics. Intertwined with these lessons are her own experiences and reflections. During an unhappy childhood with a cruel stepmother in Shanghai and Tianjin, she learned much from her grandfather and aunt, both of whom sustained her through many trials. Later, as a doctor in England and America, Mah learned more from other doctors, professors, and an encounter with Philip Larkin, the noted British poet. Mah is an articulate and fluent writer, and though she gives the Chinese characters for many of the things she discusses, the material is basic enough that the reader does not need to know the Chinese. Recommended for large public libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 8/00.]--Kitty Chen Dean, Nassau Community Coll., Garden City, NY Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780767904100
Publisher:
Broadway Books
Publication date:
01/23/2001
Edition description:
1 ED
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.83(w) x 7.07(h) x 0.89(d)

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Copyright 2002 by Adeline Yen Mah

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