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The Open Road: The Global Journey of the Fourteenth Dalai Lamaby Pico Iyer
Synopses & Reviews
An incisive analysis of the modern relevance of Tibetan Buddhism and its leader...Nonfiction of the highest caliber: fascinating and thorough.
--Kirkus (starred review)
A brilliant pairing of writer and subject.
--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
A wonderful book. I don't know when I have seen such a perfect match of a glorious subject and an author who can do justice to that subject.
--Huston Smith, author of The World's Religions
Pico Iyer's exceptionally intimate portrait of the Dalai Lama takes us beyond global celebrity image and into a true private audience with a leader of tremendous complexity. Without ever losing compassion or respect for his subject, Iyer (like a good Buddhist, actually) peels away layer after layer of illusion, revealing critical truths about this man at every possible level. In so doing, the author makes an important case — namely, that the world doesn't merely need larger-than-life humanitarian idols; the world needs larger-than-life humanitarian idols whom we can also recognize as being real people, whose limitations, doubts and personal struggles reflect our fragile humanity right back upon us.
-Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love
Pico Iyer delights, weaving with scintillating intelligence and evident fondness a spell-binding tale of the 14th Dalai Lama's uncanny power on the world stage. The Open Road intertwines an insider's access to telling detail with a well-seasoned journalist's skeptical sensibility. This thoughtful, thought-provoking book will open readers' eyes. I couldn't put it down.
-Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence
In The Open Road, Pico Iyer transcends hiscelebrated excellence as a travel writer. In an uncommonly thoughtful and eloquent report on the spiritual reflections and also the complex and demanding political and practical encounters negotiated every day by the Dalai Lama-an old friend of his father whom he has known well since early boyhood, not only on regular sojourns at Dharamsala but as a companionable observer on His Holiness's tireless world travels on behalf of simple sanity and peace-Iyer has brought us an invaluable account and precious gift.
-Peter Matthiessen, author of The Snow Leopard
Pico Iyer has taken on perhaps the hardest subject in the whole world to capture on paper: the story of a spiritual/political leader whose greatness is routinely condensed by media accounts into platitudes, and of a movement for both globalized understanding and the salvation of one very particular sliver of land. His account of the 14th Dalai Lama is an undiluted triumph, a book as subtle and moving as any nonfiction produced in recent decades. The planet and its possibilities will look different to you by its close.
-Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy
From the Hardcover edition.
An illuminating account of the Dalai Lama furnishes an eye-opening study of his diverse roles as a politician, scientist, philosopher, and religious leader; discusses his ideas about religion, Tibet, peace, and world events; and examines his hidden life, often pragmatic messages, and the daily challenges he confronts. 50,000 first printing.
This book is the first serious consideration of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama's work and ideas as a politician, scientist, and philosopher. Author Iyer has been engaged in conversation with the Dalai Lama (a friend of his father's) for three decades--an ongoing exploration of his message and its effectiveness. Now, Iyer captures the paradoxes of the Dalai Lama's position: though he has brought the ideas of Tibet to world attention, Tibet itself is being remade as a Chinese province; though he was born in one of the remotest, least developed places on earth, he has become a champion of globalism and technology. He is a religious leader who warns against being distracted by religion; a Tibetan head of state who suggests that exile from Tibet can be an opportunity; an incarnation of a Tibetan god who stresses his humanity. Iyer illuminates the hidden life, the transforming ideas, and the daily challenges of a global icon.--From publisher description.
Table of Contents
In public. The conundrum ; The fairy tale ; The icon — In private. The philosopher ; The mystery ; The monk — In practice. The globalist ; The politician ; The future.
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