14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
One Sober Finger Pointing at The Moon,
By A Customer
This review is from: Zen of Recovery (Paperback)
I usually only read a book once. I almost never buy more than one copy of a book. With "The Zen of Recovery" I have broken both rules. I read Mel Ash's take on recovery twice over when I first bought it three years ago. The two times I loaned out the book, I never got them back because the borrowers kept passing it on to other people. I had to repurchase it each time. I bought a copy for my Zen instructor. She liked it so much she passed it on other people at the Zen Center. I bought a fourth copy which I am hanging onto for myself. Every couple of years I re-read it again. "The Zen of Recovery" is that kind of book.
When Mel Ash described how most of us treat our present lives like a cheap motel where we are staying until we move on to something better, I was hooked. He parallels the differences and the many similarities between Zen and 12-step programs. In the chapter "What is Zen", he defines Zen as the "ultimate and original recovery program. It exposes our denial of true self and shows us how we've suffered because of our diseases of attachment, judgment, and division." He identifies Alan Watts as the "unknowing founder" of the Zen of Recovery and Bill W., the founder of AA, as an American bodhisattva.
This book, however, gives more than just a new perspective on some old ideas. Mel Ash takes the recovery concepts of craving, suffering, denial, and ignorance and expands them to consider concepts such as ego-addiction, the challenge of uncovering our true natures and of healing the planet ("the world is need of recovery").
A good read!!!