As with many self-destructive kids, Noah Levine's search for meaning led him first to punk rock, drugs, drinking, and dissatisfaction. But the search didn't end there. Having clearly seen the uselessness of drugs and violence, Noah looked for positive ways to channel his rebellion against what he saw as the lies of society. Fueled by his anger at so much injustice and suffering, Levine now uses that energy and the practice of Buddhism to awaken his natural wisdom and compassion.
While Levine has come to embrace the same spiritual tradition as his father, best-selling author Stephen Levine, he finds his most authentic expression in connecting the seemingly opposed worlds of punk and Buddhism. As Noah Levine delved deeper into Buddhism, he chose not to reject the punk scene, instead integrating the two worlds as a catalyst for transformation. Ultimately this is an inspiring story about maturing and how a hostile and lost generation is finally finding its footing. This provocative report takes us deep inside the punk scene and moves from anger, rebellion, and self-destruction to health, service to others, and genuine spiritual growth.
©2003 Noah Levine (P)2016 Tantor
"This honest, page-turning confession is also a measure of the adaptability and usefulness of the Asian tradition of Buddhism for the young and the restless of contemporary America." (Publishers Weekly)
I really wanted to like this book but I ended it feeling disappointed. This book made me feel like I was listening to a kid in high school dropping names of people, constantly talking about their spiritual tattoos and a bit of angry and ignorantly spoken moments about India. I wasn't inspired at all to seek the path of Buddhism and felt like, if anything, this book was a plug on how to look like your a cool spiritual punk rocker by going to punk shows, strange diving and wearing a bunch of tattoos of deities. Now, I do respect his journey and that he cleaned up his life... but what I mostly got from this book is that he spent a long time not being able to really dive into his practice because it wasn't comfortable to leave his punk rock life behind. He goes to India and complains about the monasteries and his inability to really commit his life to the practice directly before calling a hotel manager ignorant because he called his buddy a fake sadhu.
Also, this guys voice was almost intolerable after a short while and he has a slight lisp which made we question some of his words occasionally. He read poorly. The book itself is poorly written and uninspiring to me.
Now if you would like to read a book about how to be a punk rock Buddhist, this is probably for you. It's not for people interested in a true journey.
Noah's story on how he got to where is now is, and how he arrived at his understanding of Buddha Dharma, works for me. If this book sounds at all interesting to you, I say get it.
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