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Publisher's Summary

Have you ever wondered what Jesus would say to Mohammed? Or Buddha? Or Oscar Wilde? Maybe you have a friend who practices another religion or admires a more contemporary figure. Drop in on a conversation between Jesus and some well-known individuals whose search for the meaning of life took them in many directions - and influenced millions.

Popular scholar Ravi Zacharias sets a captivating scene in this first in the intriguing Conversations with Jesus series. Through dialogue between Christ and Gautama Buddha that reveals Jesus' warm, impassioned concern for all people, God's true nature is explored. It's a well-priced version that you will enjoy owning.

©2001 Ravi Zacharias (P)2008 christianaudio.com

What listeners say about Lotus and the Cross

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a good concise comparison

Ravi does an excellent job of making concise ideas for comparison. His ability to illustrate to communicate ideas is wonderful. This is a book that focuses on a few topics which will lead to more questions, but I think that is great. It's a good story.

3 people found this helpful

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excellent

What did you love best about Lotus and the Cross?

what a great way to compare!

What did you like best about this story?

kept my attention

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

At the end, what a contrast between Jesus and Buddha

1 person found this helpful

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Worship is in the core of human worth.

I loved it! This is like the 3rd time I've listened to this audio book and each time it leaves a sense owe and gratitude to God who chose Dr. Ravi to witness to my spirit and strengthen my faith and commitment to God. And thanks to Vince for such wonderful lecture. Praise be to God, my Father!

1 person found this helpful

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Insightful, Creative

It's impressive that an author could capture such imposing figures as Jesus and Buddha so accurately. Not only was this book informative, it was creative and enjoyable. Check it.

1 person found this helpful

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Make this into a movie!

What made the experience of listening to Lotus and the Cross the most enjoyable?

The dialogue between Jesus and Buddha was fascinating. The story of the young woman trapped in the life of prostitution was heart wrenching and something I could somewhat relate too. And Visually the idea of Jesus, Buddha and this woman being ferry boated through south east asia and walking through buddhist temples i would simply love to see on a movie screen.

What other book might you compare Lotus and the Cross to and why?

The only things i can compare this to is Zacharias's other Great Conversation books.

Which scene was your favorite?

Probably when the 4 of them are walking through the temple.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The devastating story of this young woman's life.

Any additional comments?

I think the only that could have been better was having their action's narrated in 3rd person rather than having the characters themselves say what they were about to do or were doing in 1st person. It sounds really heavy handed and a little cheesy. And when Buddha quoted a common phrase from Ravi Zacharias himself i was like "What? Would Buddha really say that?" Fortunately these things only happened a few times and not enough to ruin the book.

4 people found this helpful

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Compelling story; provocative comparisons.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Ravi's book is written from the Christian viewpoint and the comparisons to Buddhism are certainly provocative. Knowing little about Buddhism, I found myself reading externally to learn more. That said, the story is compelling and the reader, Simon Vance, does an excellent job. I recommend this book.

4 people found this helpful

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Biased

I was looking for something that addressed the differences between Christianity and Buddhism. This book mocks Buddhism and promotes Christianity. It was not what I was looking for but I listened in hopes of hearing something useful. It was just more of the same emotional recitation of Bible verse that I grew up listening to. If you want a feel good story about Christianity, try it BUT if you are looking for intelligent discussion on world religions, don't waste your time.

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One-sided confirmation bias

Totally one-sided. Jesus wins every argument. In that sense, this is propaganda and not drama. I was hoping for a genuine discourse between the two savior figures, but this is clearly confirmation bias for literalist fundamentalist Christians. I recommend the works of Carl Jung for comparative religion. Literalism cannot function for such comparison.

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Save your money

Any additional comments?

This synopsis of this book is disingenuous.It's clear the author doesn't have a real grasp of Buddhism. Thich Nhat Hanh's "Living Buddha, Living Christ" is a much better piece of work.

6 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars

Does not acheive what it sets out to do

C.S. Lewis, after having written the Screwtape Letters, noted that he ought to have written a companion book where heavenly angels were talking to each other, but lamented that he did not have the ability to pull off such a book, as every page would have to "reek of heaven." I say that to say that Zacharias is way out of his league, and as a literary work, this book is atrocious.

And then there's a major question concerning his methodology. Zacharias' method in exploring Buddhism was apparently to speak to Buddhist monks and nuns, whom Zacharias does not name, and as such the reader can make no judgment whatsoever in regards to whom Zacharias talked to. It is clear that Zacharias couldn't be bothered to read any Buddhist scriptures, or any scholarly writing on either Buddhism or Christianity. As such, this book resigns itself to appealing only to those who already believe that Christianity is the only true religion (or, those who will only read books which reaffirm what they already believe).

In the end, oddly, the reader ends up with a completely supernatural Jesus talking to a "de-mythologized" Buddha. Zacharias seems unaware that there is such a thing as a "de-mythologized" Jesus. Both Theravada and Mahayana schools of Buddhism believe that the Buddha was omniscient. The Buddha is believed to have perfected himself over millions of lifetimes as a bodhisattva, performing the virtuous deeds called "perfections." With his enlightenment the Buddha possessed all manner of supernormal powers, including: full knowledge of all of his past lives, as well as the past lives of all other beings; the ability to know others thoughts; the ability to rise into the air; etc. By all accounts, the Buddha was charismatic.

In short, this book is a strawman argument against Buddhism: lamentably intellectually dishonest. Instead, I recommend the audiobook "Living Buddha, Living Christ."

13 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazonian
  • 02-18-20

Hopelessness to Hope

The ultimate hopelessness of Buddhism expressed in the simple, poignant story of a Thai girl driven to prostitutution by the people and circumstances around her. As she's riddled with AIDS, Buddha can only comment that she brought it all upon herself, and now she has to spend an eternity paying off the karma she created with her actions in this life. And even if she succeeded in this impossible task and paid off her karmic debt for her life as a prostitute (a life which was not even her free choice, because it was practically forced on her) what about the new karma accumulated in the journey of however many more births to cancel off her current karma? For such is the pitiless heart of Buddhist doctrine. How could the Buddha ever feel compassion for someone, anyone, when that compassion would be an attachment of his heart to that person...ergo, by definition a negation of his blissful detachment in nirvana?
Buddhists are wonderful, admirable people committed to virtue and discipline. But they have set off on a path with no possible hope of an end. Karma is a debt that will never be paid off; it has to be written off. And only God can do such a thing. Karma (sin) is as cosmic debt that could only be erased by someone above and beyond the cosmos. God is the only one who can deal with such a cosmic force as a gift of His love and compassion. We will never be able to earn it. And this is why the Christian message makes more sense than all alternatives.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-02-21

Amazing wisdom! Superb narrations!

Explains very clearly in captivating presentation of a lovely storyline. Smooth and engaging narrations that is easy to listen to.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Silenced by Amazon
  • 02-28-10

Interesting but extremely biased

First of all, this is read very nicely by Simon Vance (one of my favourite readers of audiobooks).

I was expecting a stimulating and balanced discussion between two of the most famous people in history who have a continuing influence on the World today. However, the Christ presented here is pompous, arrogant and self-righteous. He spends the whole book attacking Shakyamuni Buddha and Buddhism. Christ never mentions antinomianism - a major failing of Christianity.

The author is clearly a Christian and clearly does not understand or respect Buddhism. However, I would recommend this audiobook to anybody because it is thought provoking if flawed and irritating at times.

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  • Charles
  • 03-30-16

beautifully done. amazing work

Loved it. will recommmend to families and friends especially to christians and buddhists searching for the Truth

1 person found this helpful