A Step Away from Paradise

The True Story of a Tibetan Lama's Journey to a Land of Immortality
Narrated by: Philip Battley
Length: 10 hrs and 45 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (69 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It was the early 1960s. The place, a far-off corner of the Himalayas long fabled in Tibetan tradition to be hiding a valley of immortality among its peaks and glaciers - a real-life Shangri-La. They waited generations for the prophesied lama to come, the one with the secret knowledge of how to "open" the Hidden Land. Then, one day, he came. His name was Tulshuk Lingpa.

This book tells the true story of this charismatic visionary lama and his remarkable expedition. Against the wishes of the kings of both Sikkim and Nepal, he and over three hundred followers ventured up the snowy slopes of the third highest mountain of the planet. Their aim: to open a crack in the very fabric of reality and go to a land we would all wish to inhabit if it were only there - a land of peace and concord.

Forty years later, the author spends over five years tracking down the surviving members of this extraordinary expedition. He deftly weaves their stories together with humor, wisdom, and scholarly research into Tibetan traditions of Hidden Lands, all the while reflecting on what this means for the rest of us.

“Like no other book I have ever read…a riveting tale of adventure…honest to the real spirit of Tibet…both unique and intriguing…an engrossing read. Highly recommended.” (Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo, from the Foreword)

From Tulshuk Lingpa’s Guidebook to the Hidden Land:

“Don’t listen to anybody. Decide by yourself and practice madness. Develop courage for the benefit of all sentient beings. Then you will automatically be free from the knot of attachment. Then you will continually have the confidence of fearlessness and you can then try to open the Great Door of the Hidden Place.”

What would have happened...

If Lewis Carroll had proclaimed the reality of Alice’s Wonderland? What if he had gathered a following and launched an expedition?

©2012 Thomas K. Shor (P)2019 Thomas K. Shor

What listeners say about A Step Away from Paradise

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A must read

This a a fascinating and well written book. The people who were showcased told their stories with heart and honesty. The author created a well researched and thoughtful book. I was sorry to see it end. The narration was excellent, I couldn’t ask for better. I would recommend this book to everyone. I was moved and entertained all at once. A true must read.

4 people found this helpful

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Wonderful book, Great Narration, Magic!

I first read the paperback version and loved it. When I heard the audio book had come out, I just had to get it. Sometimes the movie of a book or the audio book can ruin the experience you had while reading. But not in this case! The way it was narrated brought out aspects of this true story I didn’t get in the first reading, layers of meaning beneath the surface. Now I want to read the book again! Such a magical, yet true story from the Tibetan world. A great book for anyone with a sense of wonder. No need to have an interest in Tibet, Buddhism, or any other belief for that matter. A real human story of what we all wish for, somewhere deep down inside: a place of peace, free of strife and troubles. I’d give it six stars if I could!!

4 people found this helpful

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Amazing book, challenges our perception of reality

I loved this amazing book. The author invested so much of himself, his time and talents into researching this fantastic story. His writing style is impecable and the narration of the audio book was delightful. Will be looking for more of his books now.

3 people found this helpful

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Not as described

I could not get into this book. I did not care for the fake laughter. I seemed more like a fairy tail than a non fiction.

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Deeply affecting

Inspiring, thrilling and powerful, I suspect I will be thinking about this account for a very long time. This book works beautifully on multiple levels: as a mind-bending logic-defying story of modern day magic and adventure, as a brilliant revelation of the depth and power of human meaning-making in difficult situations, and—for Western people like myself with an interest in Vajrayana Buddhist practice—a precious example of how Buddhist doctrines of karma, pure view, emptiness and compassion can be *lived* experience.

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  • R
  • 07-30-20

love it!

So well written and such a captivating story! Narration was well done too, nice voice and pace.

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Like Dune in the Himalayas

Imagine Dune set against the snowy Himalayas instead of a desert planet and “spice” as a sacred hidden land prophesied thousands of years earlier. My favorite Audibel experience. As a dharma practitioner, a wilderness guide and a reader of fables to my toddler, I found all of it like a blanket made of cloud cover, constantly changing with each detail, but always gorgeous. Smart and understated as in old classics like Kidnapped and Treasure Island, but with fantastic twists from the hidden realms of the Himalaya. Worth a year’s worth of Audibel membership.

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A riveting read!

This is an astounding story told with the insight and compassion worthy of a true practitioner of the dharma. It is rich in detail, nuance and consumate word smithing....obviously thoroughly researched. On its way to becoming a true classic in the tradition of Alexandra David-Neal’ s “Magic and Mystery in Tibet”, a most riveting read!!!

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Thoroughly Engrossing!

Admittedly, I love stories that are true as well as stories about truth, that is, Dharmic. I enjoyed this so much that I just started re-listening to it immediately upon finishing it the first time. The tale is fascinating and the narration was excellent; varied, well acted, pleasant to the ear and clearly enunciated. Altogether wonderful!! Bravo!

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Fascinating

I loved this book in so many ways. Brilliantly written . Beautifully told. The narrator was absolutely first class.

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  • sverre Robert Ring
  • 05-24-20

A riveting story on the true nature of reality

A remarkable story of a truly remarkable man and what we humans are capable of when we truly believe! It has touched me deeply. I am full of gratitude that this story found me🙏

2 people found this helpful

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  • James Mullen
  • 05-30-20

Magical, insight in another World

Loved every moment. Great Narration. Lots of memories taken from such vivid Stories. Hope Bayul is still there as Humanity may need it Soon.

1 person found this helpful

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  • benledi
  • 01-12-20

Fascinating read

Wonderfully told fact based story inspiring and thought provoking, a wonderful insite into mystery of Tibetan Dharma.

1 person found this helpful

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  • E. Maxwell
  • 11-24-19

Enthralling Profound and Moving

Thomas K Shor takes us on a deeply moving and beautifully written account of a series of events in the life of Terton Tulshuk Lingpa, culminating in his journey with 300 followers to the promised land. The author and narrator transport us easily to the land of the Tibetan people with their rich customs and the deep teachings, allowing us to experience not only Tulshuk Lingpa's journey, but the deep faith of his many followers. The reverent voice Phillip Battley distinctly added to the hypnotic journey of this audio book. I highly recommend this audio book

1 person found this helpful