The Mindful Summer Reading Series: Fun fiction with a mindful message

by Donna Torney on June 7, 2014 · 0 comments

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Beach reads can be fun and teach a thing or two about the here and now.  I suggest putting  A Tale For the Time Being, and Breakfast With Buddha in your beach bag if you are looking fun and mindful summer reads.

In Ruth Ozeki’s A Tale For the Time Being we meet sixteen year-old Nao, and her grandmother, Jiko, who happens to be a Buddhist nun.  Nao was born in California and is now living in Japan with her family after her father lost his job as a Silicone Valley computer programmer.  We get to know Nao and her family through her journal after it washes ashore on a remote island across the Pacific , sealed in a plastic bag enclosed in a Hello Kitty lunch box.  The finder of this treasure, Ruth, becomes obsessed with finding Nao and her family members in order to know if they survived the 2011 tsunami.

Without knowing Nao’s fate the reader joins with her family as grandmother Jiko (the grandmother we should all have) teaches patience, self-acceptance, loss, love, and the importance of the here and now,  through her Buddhist wisdom.

 

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In Breakfast with Buddha, author Roland Merullo introduces us to Otto Ringling a middle-aged New York executive who is tricked by his “flaky” sister into taking a road trip with a Rinpoche.  Hilarity ensues, as well as some big life lessons.  I must admit I was skeptical when I first started reading Breakfast with Buddha, thinking the plot might be too predictable.  But the author’s knowledge of a wide range of contemplative traditions shines through.  Every time I thought I knew what was around the bend, Otto’s Buddhist master/co-pilot adds a unexptected twist.  I was pleasantly surprised by this book, and the sequel, Lunch with Buddha is in my Amazon cue.

Contact us and tell us what you’re reading this summer.

We wish you twenty minutes of mindfulness every day!

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