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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and riveting stuff
I'm not entirely sure how I came across this book; to emulate Jaimal's use of analagies, my memory on the subject is like the many waves of the sprawling ocean, rising and falling with no clear definite beginning. But I'm pretty sure Jaimal Yogis (the author of this wonderful book) added me on Facebook, probably through the many Buddhist-related facebook groups I am a...
Published on 13 July 2009 by Conor M. Newman

versus
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not as good as it could be
first of all, i don't hate this book, the quality of writing is great, i like to surf too, so that appealed to me, i know a bit about buddhism and meditation, so i get that and i also like to travel a bit too, so on paper this book ticks all the boxes, i'm just not sure there is enough to go at with this book to make it a worthwhile exercise.

yogis biographical...
Published on 2 Jun 2010 by jamesr0012


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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and riveting stuff, 13 July 2009
By 
Conor M. Newman "Gaius Julius" (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
I'm not entirely sure how I came across this book; to emulate Jaimal's use of analagies, my memory on the subject is like the many waves of the sprawling ocean, rising and falling with no clear definite beginning. But I'm pretty sure Jaimal Yogis (the author of this wonderful book) added me on Facebook, probably through the many Buddhist-related facebook groups I am a member of (and yet fail to contribute to...). I had no idea who he was. I went on his profile, curious as to who this strange, Hawaiian-looking guy with long curly hair was. Turned out he was a journalist who had just written a book called Saltwater Buddha. Now, I am no surfer; I live in Surrey, which is not exactly surfing territory (the lack of a coast line probably contributing towards that fact). I've never surfed in my life. But I am a Buddhist (well, I say that, I'm really just extremely interested in Buddhism and try to follow its key tenets. In fact, I'm probably a lot like Jaimal was at my age in terms of my spirituality-intrigued, excited, but not too keen on sticking to one thing for longer than a few months!).

To cut a long, pointless story short, I eventually bought Jaimal's book (it was, and is right now, my summer holidays, and I had completely exhausted every single book, film and video game in my house. I needed something new and different) and I am glad I did. It's a very small book, split into absolutely tiny sections which each act as an individual pearl of wisdom. However, these often self-contained reasonings on the relationship between Zen and Surfing, or on turbulent or important times in Jaimal's life all come together to form a fascinating coming-of-age story about a young guy who didn't know who he was, what he wanted to do, or what he believed in. What he did know is that he was not going to spend his life in the neverending cycle of suffering that is ordinary, suburban living. (Of course, I think he eventually realised that there is only one escape from that cycle of suffering, and running away to Hawaii certainly isn't it!).

It's an easy-to-read book; it's written in a very conversational way, as if Jaimal himself were sitting there chatting to you about his life. It's constantly funny and, at times, absolutely laugh-out-loud hilarious. It oozes with unbelievable passion for both meditation and surfing and, by the end of the book, I got the impression that if I ever had the chance to meet Jaimal, he would be a lovely guy. He's done the sorts of things in his life that many of us have dreamt of doing, but he had the chutzpah to actually go ahead and do it-he followed his dreams, regardless of the consequences.

If I can level any criticism at this book, it would be that I wanted it to be a bit longer. Although I understand that that isn't the point of this book, I felt that it sometimes skimped on the more minor details which, personally, I relish in. But then, I'm used to reading absolute epics; if you are someone who doesn't read much, this book will be perfect. I also felt like, because I didn't surf, some of the descriptions of surfing went a bit over my head. I think if you are a surfer, you will enjoy this book even more than I did (and I absolutely loved it!)

This book is an excellent introduction to Zen and its relationship with surfing, and also how to apply some Buddhist principles to your everyday life. It's also a wonderful coming-of-age story and a compelling read. Thoroughly recommended!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not as good as it could be, 2 Jun 2010
This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
first of all, i don't hate this book, the quality of writing is great, i like to surf too, so that appealed to me, i know a bit about buddhism and meditation, so i get that and i also like to travel a bit too, so on paper this book ticks all the boxes, i'm just not sure there is enough to go at with this book to make it a worthwhile exercise.

yogis biographical telling of his youth, surfing and spiritual enlghtenment always seemed to be too vague, i would've preferred him to write more, not skipping over details, more insight into his family life, upbringing, motivation etc. the book is over 200 pages, but there are too many chapters, sub-chapters, massive margins and text around 14 point with huge spacing. really this book is probably 50 pages or less at a typical 10 point novel text size. this alone makes me feel there's an element of insecurity and a lack of professionalism about the book and gave the impression it was aimed at a young audience, though i don't think it is.

yogis story is slightly predictable in terms of the links between spirituality and surfing, a touch of localism, a sketchy father/son relationship, he just doesn't go into enough detail about these things. it has all the potential of an exciting journey, years of travelling and surfing, searching out the very depths of yogis soul, his calling in life, but in the end becomes a list of places, a quick delve into buddhism, learning some surfing, then off to the next destination.

the thing with a sport like surfing is it's almost impossible to put into words without doing it, hence there being so few interesting surfing books. they rarely get past the stage of explaining to a non-surfer what surfing is like. you find this with other sport/lifestyle related books, that the author's exuberance and love for what they're doing doesn't quite translate through the writing in an interesting way, almost as if they think that what they're feeling will instantly be inpregnated into the ink. for this reason the book feels slightly thin of any real content, slightly like you've just skipped though 10 years of things happening over the space of 15 lines of text.

all in all, it isn't that i can't see the merits of this book, it's more that i can see yogis potential as a writer and as someone who has taken a unique path to their goal, just the book didn't give me enough of this to really find it that enthralling or exciting.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surfers Locker, 17 July 2010
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
Jaimal Yogis from an early age had been exposed to spiritual teachings from the East. In particular, Buddhism - with the underlying aim of seeking spiritual truth, found resonance with a young man who had also discovered a love of the ocean and surfing.

Perhaps then it is not surprising that the young disciple begins his quest of adolescent discovery by running away to the promised land of Hawaii.

It doesn't take long, however, for Jaimal to encounter life's trials and tribulations and the young surfer soon turns to meditation to help focus his thoughts and to divine the rest of his life.

From then on the development of Jaimal's spiritual being is inextricably linked to his journey as a surfer. The connection with the ocean is fundamental and proves a fertile proving ground in developing the young mind and body into a Saltwater Bhudda.

The book is written in easy bite-size chunks and is very easy to read. The story develops quickly into a good page-turner, but do stop and ponder for a while in places in case you miss the hidden gems of philosophy woven within. Not as well written as Tom Anderson's Riding the Magic Carpet, but still a good read that will resonate with many a surfer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it!, 11 Jun 2010
By 
U. Watson (Merseyside, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
Loved it, from the first page to the end. You definately don't have to be a surfer to enjoy this book, full of insight, humility and humour - cracking read.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a little gem!!, 5 Dec 2009
This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
First of all, forgive my english because I am from Spain.
As you can see the book must be easy to read so a spaniard can understand it.

Ok you can think...surf and zen??? YES it is obvious to be well integrated.
What a great book!! ADVISE: Only for surfers!!

If you are the kind of surfer that thinks you have passed the line and got into the world of obsession this is your book.

Its the life of Jaimal. How surfing gets to be the most important part of his life. Maybe the only one. And how he fights against it.

very few zen (just a way of explaining things) and a lot of personal-surfing living life.

RECOMENDED.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Easy quick enjoyable read, 6 May 2014
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M. Gordon - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
Loved his descriptions of places and emotions and the easy to read informal style of writing. It transported me away from the hustle and bustle of my tube journeys :-)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 26 Jan 2014
By 
E. Parr "Emily Parr" (Edinburgh, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
A very inspiring and interesting story. It helps that I like meditatingt and also water tho I can't surf at all
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5.0 out of 5 stars great read!, 9 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea (Paperback)
it was a great read. I didn't want to put it down! I would recommend it to any keen surfer who is also into Buddhism.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good read, 8 Dec 2012
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As a bit of a hippy and a wannabe buddhist I thought this would appeal to me and it did. A very absorbing read which makes you feel empathy with the characters.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Really good read, 30 Aug 2012
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Helen Clare - See all my reviews
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I really enjoyed this book, I found it interesting and inspirational. I could compare much of it to my own feelings which made it more real.
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Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea
Saltwater Buddha: A Surfers Quest to Find Zen on the Sea by Jaimal Yogis (Paperback - 1 Jun 2009)
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