Living with the devil: a meditation on good and evil
Living with the Devil is Stephen Batchelor's work on humankind's greatest struggle - to become good. Batchelor traces the trajectory - from the words of the Buddha and Christ, through the writings at Shantideva, Milton, and Pascal, to the poetry of Baudelaire and the fiction of Kafka - of impediments that keep us from doing what's in our own and others' best interests. He shows us the myriad forms those obstacles take: a wandering farmer, a caring friend, a devout religious believer, a powerful king, even a frustrated old man who doodles in the sand when he cannot snare the Buddha. The devil need not appear with horns and a forked tail: he stands for everything that paralyzes our innate wisdom, freedom, and empathy, thus blocking our paths in life. In a world of black and white, Batchelor paints in shades of gray, illustrating what it means to live in an ambiguous and precarious environment that continually tempts us from what we hold to be good.
Drawing on classic religious texts from East and West, as well as the findings of modern physics and evolutionary biology, Batchelor asks us to examine who we really are, and to rest in the uncertainty that we may never know.
Living with the Devil tells a tale that weaves its way among philosophy, religion, and science, and psychology, history, and myth. This is a book that will challenge your attitudes, your beliefs, the very way you live your life.
Results 1-3 of 47
Isolating Buddha's shadow in the person of Mara may have served well as a
literary and didactic device, but it allowed the possibility of the two figures
becoming further split apart. Over the centuries, this culminated in Buddha's
25 While Buddha remains alert to the urges of his biology: The text alludes to
impotence metaphorically: "or else he would have dried up and withered away
and become shriveled, just as a green reed that has been mowed down would
dry up ...
153 "To become independent of others": This phrase is used to describe one who
has become a "stream entrant" (sotapanna), i.e., has gained direct experiential
insight into the four ennobling truths and embarked on the eightfold path. p.
What people are saying - Write a review
Living With the Devil: A Meditation on Good and EvilUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Batchelor (Buddhism Without Beliefs) has written a moving and timely study of the problem of evil from a Buddhist perspective. He draws deeply on traditional Buddhist insights as well as stories from ... Read full review
One The God of This Age Parallel Mythologies
This Need Not Have Happened
15 other sections not shown