Chasing the Monk's Shadow (Pdf)

Chasing the Monk's ShadowIs is one of those Long after the pages have been completed the journey promises to stay in my mind It is now xactly a decade since Mishi Saran started on her journey mind It is now Dance Real Slow exactly a decade since Mishi Saran started on her journey follow a monk who had himself made a journey of over 10000 miles 14 centuries before her time Xuanzang who I last met in my history text from school the monk with the neat backpack The book hooked me right from the time the author described how she found a purpose an Indian woman with a Chinese craze a Chinese monk with an Indian obsession we had the same schizophrenia the monk and I It seemed logical to take the same roadThe best journeys are those which traverse time and space in one stroke and that sxactly what this book does Though in many ways it could be described as a TRAVELOGUE TOO THAT WOULD BE UTTERLY UNFAIR IT IS too that would be utterly unfair It is much a personal journey for the author a search for her roots and identity As Mishi Saran travels across China and Central Asia following Xuanzang s path her vivid prose blurs the boundaries that have been created in the modern The Art of Memoir era and itsasy to see the influence of ancient civilisations and regimes influence art architecture language customs and thus life itself And at the The Day Christ Was Born: The True Account of the First 24 Hours of Jesus's Life edges where its not just cultures that collide but religions too as they are reshaped or recast in different moulds Islam Buddhism Sufism The writing style forces one to make the journey with her and I could see that there were actually three journeys unraveling simultaneously the author the monk and the Buddha himself All of them journeys with a purpose And amidst all thelouence it has obviously been a journey that reuired grit and courage And luck which many a time failed the author From places where children going to school needed visas and permits to the posturing of a few contemporary students of Buddhism to the origins of words that are still used in common parlance and characters which seem to leap out of history pages Ashoka Kanishka Chandragupta the pages hold in them tangential journeys for the reader The last part of the book where the author gets to almost finally visit the territories crossed by Xuanzang in Afghanistan is written a month before 911 and gives us a gripping account of Afghanistan under the Taliban with glimpses of people who have perhaps yet to find peace I believed him It was hard not to believe a man when you were standing in front of his blown up home and staring at the ruins of his life Whatever the story was this was his truth Unlike fiction one cannot console the self that the person and his story are imaginary The last part of the journey does not add a lot with respect to the purpose of the book but it s a part that I m glad the author chose to add here As a reader I could relate to the author s words in the last page I understood less not I had acuired this sadness and that is what makes this book on. He subcontinent Fourteen hundred years later Mishi Saran follows in Xuanzang's footsteps to the fabled oasis cities of China and Central Asia and the Buddhist sites and now vanished kingdoms in India Pakistan and Afghanistan that Xuanzang wrote about Traveling seamlessly back and forth in time between the seventh cent. E of the best I ve read On the surface the book is about xploration of the great journey Kudos to the author for taking on an xciting journey The book has interesting tidbits of life along the silk road and parallel commentary from Xuan Tsangsources Yet the author shows only a superficial interest in the monk s journeypsychology Granted this is a very difficult topic considering the geopolitical and culture Difficulties But The Author Does Not Seem Drawn To Xuan But the author does not seem drawn to Xuan as a person or history in general any than passing interest in a cool topic which it is A researched approach would have helped the book After re reading Richard Bernstein s In the footsteps travelogue of the monk recently and hating it as much the second time as the first time I read it I was delighted to discover that Mishi Saran had written her own book to trace the travels of the great Chinese translator and monk Xuanzang This book was verything Bernstein s was not She is fluent in the language and very respectful of the people she ncounters along the way A good sport and a free spirit she leaves her life in Hong Kong and travels overland from Xian to India along the Silk Road The book was published by Penguin India Books from India always have a familar smell that I can t put my finger on but I like It might remind me of books from my childhood the paper and the fonts Also hand sewn So my reading I had different xpectations from this book the journey was great and kudos to the author for taking it but the information was very superficial and didn t satisfy me there are parts which are interesting but overall the book failed to impress the context switching was random there were parts where author s own ideas of things overpowered the actual account and the story telling itself was not good I picked up this book in a small bookstore in Kathmandu after reading the back An Indian woman with a China craze a Chinese Monk with an Indian obsession we had the same schizophrenia the monk and I It seemed logical to take the same road The author follows the footsteps of Xuanzang the 7th century buddhist monk who traveled from China to India to find and translate the Yogacara Buddhist texts She takes the silk road through Uzbekistan Kyrgstan find and translate the Yogacara Buddhist texts She takes the silk road through Uzbekistan Kyrgstan Afghanistan into various provinces of India trying to find herself through the monk s yes The only problem is that the book touches on various historical subjects only a cursory overview which leads the reader horribly dissatisfied with her tale of history and thirsting for It was a great Integrity Restored: Helping Catholic Families Win the Battle Against Pornography enterprise taken up But Mishi Saran floundered It s sorrowful to be a woman who needs protection of men or of numbers freuently of both One feels sad that half of us are still haunted by the feeling that they are potential victims of men to such anxtentContrast with the great monk s journey couldn t be starke. Ury and the twenty first Saran uncovers the past with consummate skill The Taste of Night (Signs of the Zodiac, even as she brings alive the present through her vivid andngaging descriptions of people and places A riveting mix of lively reportage high adventure historical inuiry and personal memoir this delightfully written book is a path breaking travelog.

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Detailed Review Xuanzang pronounced Shwezang in the Chinese was an incredible monk and mishi Saran the author does a decent job catching up with him as she travel through china and the Indian subcontinentThe books style is a travel memoir with the travel being following the footsteps of this monk he walked she takes very possible vehicle imaginableI would have liked a little walking for some reason and a little less personal anecdotes and uotations from Xuanzang s original textThere is also one factual rror where he apparently walked and impossible distance in two daysI think she said 300 kms or 600 li should be like 60 kms The Road From Home: The Story Of An Armenian Girl even that seems a stretch clarifications from the author would be niceThe history part and detail fleshing out and connections made do impress but only rarely when ms Saran is not obsessed with her own personal travel dilemmasAlong with the map of her journey the places list along with the time period ruler and dates would have been an addition I would have really appreciatedHaving said that the book does delight in parts and her care for the journey and passion for the scholarship and history at hand comes throughBut there is too much tired cliched writing about her personal life that could have been left outThat narrative layer bogs the book down a bit and the cliched personal history to her relationship to the monks seems a far stretch the spiritual confusions or clarifications seem inane and did not interest meWell to conclude glad she took the trip and shared her insights with utmost sincerity Cheers on that accountChasing the Monk s Shadow Mishi Saran traces thenthralling journey of the most famous historian xuangxang after 800 years of his monumental travel to the medivial IndiaThe Mesmer hangs in the atmosphere while reading this book the reader is filled with a nostalgia something unknown that one longed for previously but forgotten as the times passed is forced nostalgia something unknown that one longed for previously but forgotten as the times passed is Exile and Pilgrim enter the reader s memory while scrolling these pages the reader somehow finds himself in thenlightening journey with xuanxuangand the joy of travelOne of the best written travel booksit has managed to make an impact in my lifeA must read for travel lovers I was looking forward to read this book after reading its description but disappointed after completing it Hats off to the author for taking such an adventurous the author for taking such an adventurous journey There are some parts of book which was interesting but most of the book was kind of boring I felt like some things are missing ven though author tried to include Xuanzang s and her own travel xperience This is my first traveloguebut I have gone through a fare share of travel blogs and documentaries and may be my Hannah Montana: The Movie expectation was different which made it less interesting for me There are some books that one wishes went on forever for the vicariousxperience offered is incredible Th. In the seventh century AD the Chinese monk Xuanzang set off on an pic journey to India to study Buddhist philosophy from the Indian masters Traveling along the Silk Road braving brigands and blizzards Xuanzang finally reached India where his spiritual uest took him to Buddhist holy places and monasteries throughout

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