Cover image for Zen Judaism : for you, a little enlightenment
Zen Judaism : for you, a little enlightenment
Bader, David M.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Harmony Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
109 pages : illustrations ; 17 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN6231.J5 B23 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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Few spiritual practices are more intriguing or elusive than those of Zen Judaism," says David M. Bader in the foreword to Zen Judaism . "This growing movement offers a unique way to follow in the footsteps of the Buddha, ideally without gaining quite so much weight." These nearly 100 sacred teachings are capable "of bringing about an enlightenment experience so pure, so elevating, and so intense, you could plotz."

For you, some samples:

To know the Buddha is the highest attainment. Second highest is to go to the same doctor as the Buddha.

Be here now. Be someplace else later. Is that so complicated?

There is no escaping Karma. In a previous life, you never called, you never wrote, you never visited. And whose fault was that?

If there is no self, whose arthritis is this?

Be patient and achieve all things. Be impatient and achieve all things faster.

Author Notes

David M. Bader is the author of Haikus for Jews: For You, A Little Wisdom and Zen Judaism: For You, A Little Enlightenment , among others. A Harvard-educated former lawyer, he lives in New York City.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

On the lighter side is David Bader's Zen Judaism: For You, A Little Enlightenment, a pocket book of laughs. The chuckles begin with the introduction, where Bader claims that Siddartha Buddha (aka Sidney Arthur Buddha) announced early on to his family that he intended to become a great sage. "The idea thrilled his parents, as long as he went to law school first," Bader quips. What follows are short, pithy "koans" that elicit some groans but mostly good-natured smiles: "Do not kvetch. Be a kvetch. Become one with your whining," he advises. This little book will appeal to the growing "Bu-Jew" movement (Jews who seek to incorporate elements of Buddhist practice into their spirituality), but it will also find a wider audience among those who appreciate loving, perceptive humor about religion, the family and other sacred cows. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

A sequel of sorts to Haikus for Jews, Bader's new book is a romp through the Zen tradition, matched, sometimes perilously, with the Jewish tradition of self-mockery: e.g., "Enlightenment is a sudden, wordless understanding. Stop telling everyone already" and "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single `oy.' " A continual pleasure, this is highly recommended. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



To know the Buddha is the highest attainment. Second highest is to go to the same doctor as the Buddha. zen is an end in itself. Your only goal must be mushotoku, the goal of having no goals, of striving not to strive. "How is it possible to strive to not have goals? "you might ask." Isn't that itself a goal?" Don 't be a smart aleck. You should be as goal-less and lacking in purpose as your cousin, the successful one. Be here now. Be someplace else later. Is that so complicated? Thou shalt not bow down before false idols. You may, however, rent a Buddha statue for your Zen-theme bar mitzvah. Though only your skin, sinews, and bones remain, though your blood and flesh dry up and wither away, yet shall you meditate and not stir until you have attained full Enlightenment. But first, a little nosh. To find the Buddha, look within. Deep inside you are ten thousand flowers. Each flower blossoms ten thousand times. Each blossom has ten thousand petals. You might want to see a specialist. Take only what is given. Own nothing but your robes and an alms bowl. Unless, of course, you have the closet space. The Tao that can be named is not the eternal Tao. The eternal name of the Tao is actually Taostein, but no one talks about it. Excerpted from Zen Judaism: For You, a Little Enlightenment by David M. Bader All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.