Dean Sluyter

May 27, 2022

The Dharma Bum's Guide to Western Literature

Finding Nirvana in the Classics

New World Library 2022

Today I talked to Dean Sluyter about his book The Dharma Bum's Guide to Western Literature: Finding Nirvana in the Classics (New World Library, 2022).

Suppose we could read Hemingway as haiku . . . learn mindfulness from Virginia Woolf and liberation from Frederick Douglass . . . see Dickinson and Whitman as buddhas of poetry, and Huck Finn and Gatsby as seekers of the infinite . . . discover enlightenment teachings in Macbeth, The Catcher in the Rye, Moby-Dick, and The Bluest Eye.

Some of us were lucky enough to have one passionate, funny, inspiring English teacher who helped us fall in love with books. Add a lifetime of teaching Dharma -- authentic, traditional approaches to meditation and awakening -- and you get award-winning author Dean Sluyter. With droll humor and irreverent wisdom, he unpacks the Dharma of more than twenty major writers, from William Blake to Dr. Seuss, inspiring readers to deepen their own spiritual life and see literature in a fresh, new way: as a path of awakening.

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