Synopses & Reviews
"In his new book, Warner (Hardcore Zen) momentarily sets aside his punk weapons of iconoclasm and takes a more respectful, even reverential tone to a perennial question: does God exist? As a practicing Zen Buddhist, his way of considering this question is entangled in oft-misunderstood concepts such as enlightenment. Warner never shies away from such complications; instead, they become grounds where the Western understanding of God and the Buddhist approach to reality and experience meet. For Warner, his practice is 'a way to approach and understand God without dealing with religion.' His God is one to be experienced, felt, and intuited, something that lies beneath the surface of reality that is already naturally understood, if only one could 'learn to listen to silence, to listen to nothing, and to learn from nothing.' In accompanying the punk Zen priest on such a singular journey through his understanding of God, the reader is asked to partake in meditation with Warner not on the Hebrew, Christian, Islamic, or any other traditional God, but rather One that can be found in daily experience when conceptual thinking has been silenced. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
At times in my life Ive been an atheist, a Bible study teacher, a lover of quantum mechanics, and a believer that the universe is older and vaster than anything I could imagine. This book reflects the paradox of being a human interested in anything that might be divine.”
— Moby, musician and recording artist
Insightful, refreshing, serious, humorous, and enjoyable, There Is No God and He Is Always with You takes a deep dive into the actual meaning of the word God and how it can be as useful for Zen Buddhists and atheists as for monotheists.”
— David Chadwick, author of Crooked Cucumber: The Life and Zen Teaching of Shunryu Suzuki
Brad Warner frames Buddhism with something that touches my soul on the very deepest level — humor!”
— Vicky Jenson, director of Shrek and Shark Tale
In his intimate, funny, conversational style” (Library Journal
), Brad Warner stage dives into the Sam Harris, Karen Armstrong, Christopher Hitchens mosh pit of the God or no God debate and body surfs up with a typically provocative perspective. Warner was initially interested in Zen because he wanted to find God, but Zen Buddhism is usually thought of as godless. Warner travels around the world looking for insight and what he finds, in chapters like Sam Harris Believes in God,” God Doesnt Have to Be Real to Exist,” and What God Wants,” and through visits to places including Israel, Mexico, and Northern Ireland, is the belief that Buddhism is a way to approach and understand God without dealing with religion.” The fact that the books title is Warners mis-remembrance of a Zen monks quote is emblematic of his profoundly engaging and idiosyncratic take on the ineffable power of the ground of all being.”
Can you be an atheist and still believe in God?
Can you be a true believer and still doubt?
Can Zen give us a way past our constant fighting about God?
Brad Warner was initially interested in Buddhism because he wanted to find God, but Buddhism is usually thought of as godless. In the three decades since Warner began studying Zen, he has grappled with paradoxical questions about God and managed to come up with some answers. In this fascinating search for a way beyond the usual arguments between fundamentalists and skeptics, Warner offers a profoundly engaging and idiosyncratic take on the ineffable power of the ground of all being.”
About the Author
Brad Warner, a Soto Zen monk and teacher, is also a punk bassist, filmmaker, and popular blogger. He is the author of Hardcore Zen, Sit Down and Shut Up, Zen Wrapped in Karma Dipped in Chocolate, and Sex, Sin, and Zen. A documentary about him is forthcoming from Pirooz Kalayeh, the director of Shoplifting from American Apparel. Warner lives in Los Angeles.