Synopses & Reviews
Born in the projects of Spanish Harlem to a disabled mother and an abusive father, Steve DeMasco spent most of his childhood lost and angry. Drifting from one job to another, he stalked the streets as a troubled youth, barely surviving while all of his peers were either dead or in jail, until he found himself on the steps of the Shaolin Temple.
Originating more than 1,500 years ago in ancient China, the Shaolin monks were simple farmers and worshippers of Buddhism who learned to protect themselves from the constant danger of bandits and overlords with a kind of "meditation in motion," a nonlethal form of self-defense that didn't violate their vows of peace. As their legend grew, they became known as the Shaolin Fighting Monks, revered across the land for their spiritual dedication, enlightened message, and amazing fighting skills.
DeMasco entered the Shaolin Temple to battle the demons of his past. But he got more than he bargained for. Besides learning how to wield weapons and take on multiple attackers at once, he discovered an ancient philosophy that helped melt away preconceived notions of the world, and gave him a powerful platform on which to live and grow. In The Shaolin Way, he adapts these teachings for the modern world, singling out ten secrets of survival that can help anyone live a more fulfilled life.
"A child of poverty and abuse in New York's Spanish Harlem, DeMasco had every opportunity to become just another inner-city statistic. In time, though, his inward strength and survival instinct led to a dedicated study of martial arts; eventually he became a Shaolin kung fu grand master. In this entertaining and often moving book a blend of ancient parables, memoir and instruction guide DeMasco takes an often gritty and unapologetic look at the difficulties of growing up in modern society and offers lessons from his own life and the wisdom of the Shaolin monks, who seek 'a balance between aggression and peace.' In chapters such as 'Victims Aren't Born, They're Bred' and 'Anger Is Wasted Energy,' he explains yin and yang as the balance of weakness and strength, and tells how monks learn to control their anger rather than let it control them. Tackling issues like living a fulfilling life, focusing to achieve maximum results, avoiding negative emotions and developing self-reliance, DeMasco (with People correspondent Joseph) provides a well-crafted perspective into how ancient teachings can be applied to modern problems. Agent, Sydelle Kramer." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
About the Author
Steve DeMasco is a tenth-degree black belt in Shaolin kung fu who has dedicated his life to helping prisoners, teenagers, abused women, and many others who have lost their way. He currently lectures around the world on behavior modification and reducing school violence. He lives in New Hampshire with his wife and three sons.Alli Joseph, a writer, producer and television host, has reported and produced for a variety of television outlets including USA Network, CBS News, VH1 and TNT. She's contributed to numerous magazines and newspapers, including Premiere, Maxim, People, the New York Daily News, Miami Herald and New York Post. She is a native New Yorker.