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Greetings from Amazon.com Delivers Eastern Religion
Editor, Brian Bruya

[See Crooked Cucumber below as #3 on Amazon's best Eastern religion books of 1999. Links will take you to Amazon.com's entry's for these books which includes reviews and all. For Brian Bruya's review of Crooked Cucumber, go there or check it out here.--DC]

The best books of 1999 are sure to ignite a beacon for the searching mind. The Dalai Lama introduces a practical moral compass. Jamie Zeppa changes her life forever by visiting the exotic land of Bhutan. Thich Nhat Hanh finds a sibling in Christianity. And Daniel Ladinsky dances on clouds with Sufi poet Hafiz. Cross over to the Eastern realm of wisdom, but wear your sunglasses--this could get bright.

1. "Ethics for the New Millennium" by the Dalai Lama http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1573220256/ref=ad_b_er_2 In his "Ethics for the New Millennium," the exiled leader of the Tibetan people shows how the basic concerns of all people--happiness based in contentment, appeasement of suffering, and forging meaningful relationships--can act as the foundation for universal ethics.

2. "The Tao of Abundance: Eight Ancient Principles for Abundant Living" by Laurence G. Boldt http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0140196064/ref=ad_b_er_2 Bestselling author Laurence Boldt presents a sophisticated alternative to life as we know it in "The Tao of Abundance," in which he carefully dismantles the foundations of our consumer society brick by brick and, more importantly, our unquestioning acceptance of it.

3. "Crooked Cucumber: The Life and Zen Teaching of Shunryu Suzuki" by David Chadwick http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0767901045/ref=ad_b_er_2 With David Chadwick's biography of this extraordinary man, Shunryu Suzuki will take his rightful place as one of the progenitors of American Buddhism. 

4. "Yoga and the Quest for the True Self" by Stephen Cope http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/055310313X/ref=ad_b_er_2 "Yoga and the Quest for the True Self" is Stephen Cope's chronicle of self-discovery, a milestone in the melding of Eastern and Western methods of personal transformation.

5. "Going Home: Jesus and Buddha as Brothers" by Thich Nhat Hanh http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1573221457/ref=ad_b_er_2 In "Going Home," Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hahn focuses on fundamental concepts that still drive a wedge between Christianity and Buddhism--such as rebirth vs. eternal life, God vs. nirvana, and so on.

6. "The Gift" by Hafiz; translated by Daniel Ladinsky http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0140195815/ref=ad_b_er_2 In "The Gift," translator Daniel Ladinsky bestows on us the impassioned yet whimsical strains of Sufi master Hafiz's ecstasy-filled poetry.

7. "Beyond the Sky and the Earth" by Jamie Zeppa http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/157322118X/ref=ad_b_er_2 Jamie Zeppa's candid, witty account is a spiritual memoir, a travel diary, and, more than anything, a romance that retraces the vicissitudes of ineluctable passion.

8. "Zen Path Through Depression" by Philip Martin http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0060654457/ref=ad_b_er_2 Since depression sometimes responds well to drugs, it's natural to think that, without medicinal intervention, we're helpless in the face of it. Like John Tarrant's groundbreaking "Light Inside the Dark," Philip Martin's "The Zen Path Through Depression" offers a powerful alternative.

9. "Awakening to the Sacred: Creating a Spiritual Life from Scratch" by Surya Das http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0767902742/ref=ad_b_er_2 In "Awakening to the Sacred," Surya Das heightens his efforts to increase the planet's spirituality quotient by teaching people how to take advantage of their own spiritual resources.

10. "Meeting God: Elements of Hindu Devotion" by Stephen P. Huyler http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0300079834/ref=ad_b_er_2 "Meeting God" is the culmination of Stephen Huyler's travels throughout the Indian subcontinent, documenting in vivid photographs the panoply of Hindu devotional practices.

--Brian Bruya is a comparative philosopher, writer, and translator. His latest publication is "The Wisdom of the Zen Masters."

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