Bones of the Master

Bones of the Master

A Buddhist Monk's Search for the Lost Heart of China

Unknown - 2000
Rate this:
They are the most unlikely of friends: one an American poet in love with words, a self-described ne'er-do-well and sensualist with a finely honed suspicion of authority. The other an aging Chinese monk steeped in an ancient tradition and devoted to the memory of his ascetic meditation master. Their lives come together in this extraordinary journey that takes us from the still-medieval villages of Inner Mongolia to a modern Hong Kong of black magic and stunning materialism. The journey begins in 1959, as a young monk named Tsung Tsai (Ancestor Wisdom) escapes the Red Army troops that destroy his monastery, and flees alone three thousand miles across a China swept by chaos and famine. Hidden under his peasant jacket he carries a book of poetry and his monk's certificate, either of which means death if discovered. His mission: to carry on the teachings of his Ch'an Buddhist master, Shiuh Deng, who was too old to leave with his disciple. Nearly forty years later Tsung Tsai--now an old master himself--travels with his skeptical friend Crane back to his birthplace at the edge of the Gobi Desert. China is stirring with spiritual renewal, and Tsung Tsai is determined to find Shiuh Deng's grave and build a shrine in his honor. Ignoring visa restrictions, facing down hostile bureaucrats, the two men reenter a lost world of belief and superstition nearly extinguished by history. As their search culminates in a torturous climb to a remote mountain cave, it becomes clear that this seemingly quixotic quest may cost Tsung Tsai's life. Laced with passion and humor, Crane's vivid prose captures it all: foxy town girls and outback shamans, ice-cold morning meditations and drunken feasts, sand-scoured wilderness and gold-clad Buddhas. Finally, as past and present come together we glimpse the power of a timeless faith to endure in the heart of suffering. The journey begins in 1959, as a young monk named Tsung Tsai (Ancestor Wisdom) escapes the Red Army troops who destroy his monastery, and flees alone across a famine-wracked China carrying a book of poetry and his monk's certificate, either of which means death if discovered.  His mission: to carry on the teachings of his Ch'an Buddhist master, Shuih Deng, who was too old to leave with his disciple. Nearly forty years later, Tsung Tsai, now an old master himself, travels with his skeptical American friend, Crane, back to his birthplace at the edge of the Gobi Desert, determined to find Shuih Deng's bones and rebury them with the proper ceremony.  As their search culminates in a torturous climb to a remote mountain cave--a climb that nearly kills Tsung Tsai--Crane's vivid and poetic prose captures both the paradoxes of modern China and the power of China's lost spiritual traditions. -->
Publisher: New York : Bantam Books, 2000.
ISBN: 9780553106503
0553106503
Characteristics: 293 p. : map ; 25 cm.

Opinion

From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.

Age

Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Quotes

Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Subject Headings

  Loading...
No similar edition of this title was found at PCCLD.

Try searching for Bones of the Master to see if PCCLD owns related versions of the work.


  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top