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An End to Suffering (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 31. Juli 2014

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  • Taschenbuch: 400 Seiten
  • Verlag: Picador (31. Juli 2014)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 1447273923
  • ISBN-13: 978-1447273929
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,3 x 3,1 x 23,4 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 878.272 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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"Part biography, part history, part travel book, part philosophic treatise, [and mainly] intellectual autobiography, [by someone who] 'couldn't sit still' long enough to meditate successfully . . . Mishra's book is in the best tradition of Buddhism, both dispassionate and deeply engaged, complicated and simple, erudite and profoundly humane."--The New York Times Book Review

"Succinct, lucid, and coherent."--Los Angeles Times

"[A] journey of self-discovery . . . [Mishra] struggles to reconcile lessons of the Buddha's life with his own shrinking world."--The New Yorker

"The only sane response to the post-9/11 world."--Elle
-- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .


Spanning centuries, covering the globe, and encompassing politics, philosophy and religion, The End of Suffering is both unprecedented in its scope and immaculate in its execution. An accomplished and impressive history of the Buddha, it separates the man and his beliefs from the many myths and ideologies that have since become synonymous with his name. On a more personal level, Mishra describes his travels in search of the Buddha and, in doing so, offers glimpses into his own quest for enlightenment, from childhood to September 11, from family background to friends met and made, from lessons learned to achievements as a writer. The End of Suffering also provides an account of India's post-colonial past -- and hope for its future. A moving and occasionally horrifying description of a country in chaos, the India that emerges in Mishra's writing is one struggling to forge an independent identity for itself amid talk of revolution, amid the legacy of imperialism, the violence and brutality of an oppressive caste system, and the continued influence of the West. In so combining stories of the Buddha, India and Mishra himself, the latter reveals the parallels between their respective jou -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

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Von Arango am 17. November 2013
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Great book. Highly recommended as an introduction to Buddhism for those who didn't know much about it before.
The author did a great job. He is a good writer and writes very clearly. He also carried out a lot of research in many related domains.
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64 von 65 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Traveler's History of Buddhism 24. Juli 2005
Von David B Richman - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Pankaj Mishra is an excellent writer and in his "An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World" he uses this ability to great effect. He tells the story of Buddhism between accounts of his travels in India, England, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States, weaving a coherent tale that does not spare the negatives, but also presents the positive aspects of Buddhist history. Like other belief systems, Buddhism has been misused, misinterpreted and misapplied, sometimes in the service of quite evil goals, as in Japan's militarism in the 20th Century and in Cambodia's destruction of the city-dwellers during the Pol Pot regime. That said Buddhism at its best is a very civilized religion (or philosophy, if you prefer.) It has no gods, no real holy prophets (Buddha says that he is no greater than any of his followers and asserts that he is only "awake", not holy,) and its texts are considered teachings, not revelations.

In its essence, Buddhism has a number of similarities to early Greek philosophy, but also was more egalitarian, including all sentient beings. The Buddha himself says that women, slaves, and untouchables are all capable of enlightenment, although like any other mortal he sometimes did not practice what he preached, especially in regard to women. Still he was among the first (if not the first at around 500 BCE) to recognize that women could be as good as men in the spiritual realm.

Mishra has told this story with good humor, local color and skill. This is no dry history of Buddhist theology, but a living and charming exposition of both reality (as much as we know it) and myth behind the modern rise in Buddhism. Indeed, Buddhism's attraction lies both in its positive goal of compassion and the ending of human suffering and in its lack of the literalism that dogs other worldwide religions in their too often expressed extreme forms. It is certainly refreshing not to hear absolutist rantings for a change (unfortunately the worst of the three revealed religions seems often to the forefront these days, between bombings, attempts to control national politics and laws and indeed, nihilist longings for the End Times!)

Mishra is a native of the part of the world where the Buddha lived and it is also refreshing to read an account of the history of Buddhism from someone who has experience with the land out of which it arose, someone who knows it intimately.

If you would get the essence of Buddhism, its history, geography, concepts, and failures and successes, this is definitely the book to read!
39 von 41 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Ambitious Yes. Organized? NO. Relevant and interesting? Absolutely!! 1. Juli 2005
Von P. Wung - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
As the previous reviewers noted. This is a very complex undertaking. It is obvious that Pankaj Mishra is a very talented and original writer and thinker. It is also very obvious that he really needed to sit and contemplate long and hard on what he wants to say in this book.

As previously noted, this is a autobiography of a student in search of a life and a calling. This is also a cultural biography of the Buddha, thirdly, this is also a meditation on the meaning of Buddhism in contemporary society.

I would say that Mishra missed on all three but he aimed so high that upon reflection, the sum of the effort is brilliant. The synthesis of the bits was ragged, which made for rough reading and understanding, which in turn detracted from the intent of the author.

I felt the meditation on the meaning of Buddhism was the weakest part of the three. Not that he lacked valid points and arguments, on the contrary, he did a greatjob of raising questions and ideas for contemplation. The whole section towards the end of the book dealing with our society as we know it and as we saw it metamorphose in the aftermath of 911, seems forced and rushed. It really did not seem like he had much time to really think through his ideas. He had done much hard work, and he needed to do more, but he stopped short.

The history of the Buddha was much more successful, although I think a more pedantic and to the point biography can be found in Karen Armstrong's Buddha.

The autobiography was very interesting, the main disappointment I had with it was that I had expected a linkage between the autobiography, the history of the Buddha, and the meditation on the applicability of Buddhist philosophy. There were parts where he was brilliant in integrating the three, but ultimately he failed.

This does not mean that this book is not a good read, or that it does not raise important and fascinating points, it does. But you finish the book with the feeling that a great opportunity was missed.
37 von 39 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Soulful and Scholarly 17. März 2005
Von Bibliophile - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
"An End to Suffering" combines three books into one. It includes: 1.) the author's autobiographical coming of age amidst the brutalities of contemporary India; 2.) an account of what little is known about Gautama Buddha (the historical Buddha), and how his actual existence only came to light relatively recently (through the odd efforts of various fascinating Western scholars and explorers over the past couple centuries); and 3.) a serious and lucid consideration of the Buddha's practical philosophy, illuminated by comparisons with various ancient and modern philosophers (ranging from Epicurus and Rousseau to Nietzsche and Gandhi). `An End to Suffering' is especially relevant to intellectuals trying to come to terms with our contemporary world's fall into ever-greater chaos and violence (which, according to Mishra, is strikingly similar to the Buddha's India of the 5th Century BC). For example, Mishra's description of the circumstances in which he first saw the 9/11 attack (on a small, blurred black-&-white TV in a Himalayan village) reframe the significance of that event from a perspective unfamiliar to most American readers; his philosophical reflections go far beyond contemporary politics -- as he takes into consideration such things as the Buddha's personal response to the genocide of his times, inflicted on his very own people. If you're looking for a quick E-Z `self-help' fix on Buddhism, then this certainly isn't the book for you. But those who appreciate good writing will find Mishra's style masterfully personable in its presentation of serious subject matter -- bringing it all to life far better than more 'trendy' or academic authors can. This is the ideal `five star' book for earnest readers who understand that the way to deeper understanding can often be more circuitous than direct.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
highly recommend this book 23. Juli 2006
Von Sharif Islam - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
_An End To Suffering: The Buddha in the World_ by Pankaj Mishra is more than an introduction to Buddha's life and philosophy. I recommend this for its clear writing style (even though the narration was bit unorganized few times) and personal anecdotes on how he discovered and learned about Buddha. It was also interesting to read quotes from Nietzsche, Hume along with Marx, Vivekananda, Tagore, Gandhi in a book about the Shakyamuni.

The books is part autobiography, part travelogue. The main focus is how Mishra discovered Buddha and how Buddhism fits into the modern world. This is how he ends the book:

"I now saw him in my own world, amid its great violence and confusion, holding out the possibility of knowledge as well as

redemption -- the awareness, suddenly liberating, with which I finally began to write about the Buddha."

It was pretty clear from the beginning that he hadn't fully came to a conclusion about his feelings on Buddha. As a student he was heavily influenced by Western thinkers such as Nietzsche, Hume and Marx (I was unaware that Nietzsche was a admirer of Buddha) and his first discovery of Buddha was through Western writers (this was the case for me as well). He has an unresolved tension between his relationship between east and west. I can relate to his frustration: modern educated mind (doesn't matter where you are from) is constantly involved with defining the self. On the other hand:

"But the Buddha seems to have rejected more than the Upanishadic idea of an eternal self or soul. He rejected too the self residing in the mind that Descartes assumed when he declared that he was a 'a thing that thinks' -- a thing that doubts, understands, affirms, denies, is willing, is unwilling, and imagines and has sensory perceptions. According to Cartesian view, the self is a single unified substance with the capacity to experience, desire, think, imagine, decide and act. It does not change through time, and is ontologically distinct from other selves.

The Buddha seemed to reject this notion of the individual self as a distinct substance with identity. He said that it didn't

correspond to any reality observable within the mind and the body, and, furthermore, its awareness of itself as separate from the world and other selves was false and the source of craving, pride, selfishness, and delusion. (page 255) .....

Unlike Descarte, he presented the self as a process rather than as a substance, by claiming that what we call a 'being' or an 'individual' is only a physiopsychological machine in which mental and physical energies constantly combine and change".(page 256)

It was also insightful to read about how Buddha's thought differ from the Vedic philosophy. However, Mishra is mostly preoccupied with how Buddha fits within the Western philosophy:

"In a world increasingly defined by the conflict of individuals and societies aggressively seeking their separate interests, he revealed both individuals and societies as necessarily interdependent. He challenged the very basis of conventional human self-perceptions -- a stable, essential identity -- by demonstrating a plural, unstable human self -- one that suffered but also had the potential to end its suffering. An acute psychologist, he taught a radical suspicion of desire as well as of its sublimations -- the seductive concepts of ideology and history. He offered a moral and spiritual regimen that led to nothing less than a whole new way of looking at and experiencing the world." (page 404)
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World 10. März 2006
Von Sylla Cousineau - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
I bought this book on a hunch because of my long standing interest in India and in Buddhism (I am a Vipassana meditator). Mishra's book is simply stunning. Not only does it constantly surprise, intrigue and move the reader, but it is also surprisingly scholarly. All aspects of the Buddha's life and teachings have been researched here quite extensively but the novel and fresh format of this work makes the reader forget the scholarship that sustains the book while Mishra imparts reals wisdom based on experience really, an approach that I feel the Buddha would not have found uncongenial! By mixing personal history, consideration on Indian society, on modernisation and its impact on world society, stories about the Buddha and his time and place, as well as a look at the Buddha's ideas and how they relate to some of Europe's leading philosophers of the post-enlightenment era, Mishra has created a work that defies categorisation into any particular genre but that consistently illuminates its subject matter and touches the heart of his reader. I will cherish this book and read it again for years to come and think that over time it could/should become a classic.
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