Synopses & Reviews
"Both spiritual journey and romantic memoir, this book, named after the author's popular blog, recounts Jenkins's love affair with and eventual marriage to a Korean Buddhist monk. Traveling to South Korea on a whim to teach English, the author explored Buddhist meditation with the help of a young monk with whom her relationship deepened. Jenkins describes in detail her willingness to endure grueling living conditions, separations, and much travel in search of happiness based on her own knowledge: 'I have to walk my own path and find my own wisdom through my own experiences,' she writes. Each chapter is couched as a life 'lesson,' such as 'trust your inner voice' and 'you are more than the roles you play.' Jenkins's writing is graceful and direct, and she isn't afraid to reveal her initial naÃ¯vetÃ©. Her observations tend toward the superficial and clichÃ©d ('I still didn't fully trust the universe'), and the author is reticent about her reactions to the complexities of Asian cultures. Overall, romance overshadows spiritual wisdom in this gentle, earnest book. Agent: Tricia Davey." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Katherine Jenkins offers us a glowing jewel in this moving and uplifting book. She shares with us an abundance of wisdom and insight learned in the university of life. This beautifully written and compelling work is one to treasure and share with those we love." Allan Lokos, guiding teacher, Community Meditation Center, NYC, and author of Patience and Pocket Peace
"I was inspired by the wisdom in Lessons from the Monk I Married, entranced by its exploration of far-away places, and moved by Katherine's story of profound and irresistible love. It's a story that would force even the most jaded person to agree that there is, indeed, such a thing as a love that was meant to be." Noelle Oxenhandler, author of The Wishing Year
"Katherine Jenkins's beautiful memoir is a wonderful story of listening to one's heart through both hardships and joy alike." Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Happiness
Katherine Jenkins came to South Korea not only to teach English, but also to pursue answers to life's difficult questions in the hopes of finding a sense of purpose and peace. Her travels there brought her to a remote temple, where she unknowingly crossed paths with an unassuming Buddhist monk. Months later, they met again by chance—and both their lives were irrevocably changed.
Lessons from the Monk I Married traces Katherine and Seong Yoon Lee's long journey from complete strangers to happily married couple. Jenkins tells the unlikely tale of how their bond transcended physical and cultural boundaries, weathering difficult separations and requiring enormous leaps of faith; of how Seong Yoon left his teachers, his temple, and the only life he had ever known to be with her; and of how their relationship challenged her to let go of expectations, set aside emotional and cultural confines, and find her own path. Presented in the form of ten fundamental spiritual lessons, their story is rooted in Buddhism, yet the lessons Jenkins has to offer—about openness and expectations, faith and hope, and ultimately love—are universal.
Heartwarming and inspiring, Lessons from the Monk I Married is more than the improbable story of a girl from Seattle who found peace of mind (and love) with a Buddhist monk—it's an approachable guide to the most elemental spiritual questions of our day.
>Lessons from the Monk I Married
offers up ten of the most powerful lessons about life, love, and spirituality that Katherine Jenkins has gathered during her marriage to former Buddhist monk Seong Yoon Lee.
A seeker in the truest sense of the word, Jenkins went to Korea on a whim, hoping to find the answers to her deepest, most pressing questions about how to find peace and her purpose in life. During her first months there, she sought out a remote temple, where she unknowingly crossed paths with an unassuming Buddhist monk. Months later, they met again by chance—and fell in love. Though their courtship was long, mostly secretive, and fraught with logistical and spiritual considerations, Jenkins and Lee were ultimately married in Korea in 2003. Through their relationship, Jenkins discovered the most important lesson of all: No one holds the keys to peace and happiness—you have walk your own path and find your own wisdom through your own experiences.
More than the improbable story of a girl from Seattle who found peace of mind (and love) with a Buddhist monk, Lessons from the Monk I Married is an approachable guide to the most elemental spiritual questions of our day.
About the Author
Katherine Jenkins is the author of the popular blog Lessons from the Monk I Married, which offers lessons based in the Buddhist tradition and drawn from her daily experiences. She is a regular contributor to Woman's World Online Magazine, and the founder of Writers Rising, a blog she started for writers, which now has over twenty contributors.
Jenkins spent over eight years in South Korea, where she met her husband in 1996. That same year, she went to Nepal and joined a ten-day silent meditation course. That ten-day course changed her life and she has been practicing Vipassana meditation ever since.
Jenkins moved back to the States with her husband in 2006, where they became managers of the Northwest Vipassana Meditation Center in Washington State. During her time at the meditation center, she helped edit the book Letters from the Dhamma Brothers, which was featured on Oprah Winfrey's Soul Series in October of 2008.
Today, Jenkins lives in Seattle with her husband, a popular yoga teacher and lecturer, and she teaches English as a Second Language at Edmonds Community College.