Book Review: Buddhist Boot Camp by Timber Hawkeye
Bite-size pieces of inspiration offered by an ordinary guy in an every-day manner (no scary monk-speak).
Everything in your life will improve as soon as your determination to move forward is stronger than your reluctance to let go of the past. – Timber Hawkeye
Life offers acceptance in hidden places. When I converted to Buddhism, I expected push-back from my family, especially my father who many years ago expressed distaste at a small jade Buddha statue I brought back from Thailand. Now, he is dating a woman who accepts multiple views on religion, much as Timber Hawkeye. She gave me Buddhist Boot Camp as a gift. As I am already Buddhist, have spent time studying in monasteries in Sri Lanka and countless hours reading long and complicated text on Buddhism, I wasn’t sure if I would find this book helpful.
Hawkeye states the basic idea behind Buddhist Boot Camp thus; Gratitude has a way of turning what we have into enough. He develops that basic principle through short and easy to understand chapters which guide people of all faiths and with no previous knowledge of Buddhist philosophy on ways to build mindfulness, love & relationships, religion & spirituality, understanding, and success. He addresses anger, insecurities and fears, and shows us how to live with gratitude.
What I found most inviting was his honest and non-preachy writing style. He admits to mistakes and encourages us to embrace the learnings from events in our past. His open and inviting stories break down the basics so Buddhist principles are easy to incorporate in our daily lives.
I highly recommend reading this book a chapter at a time (approx. 2 min) in the morning or before bed and reflecting on ways to nourish gratitude in your life.
I did notice that some ideas were relayed multiple times with exactly the same wording/sentences. I won’t jump to the conclusion that this was lazy editing, but perhaps Hawkeye intended to solidify our memory through repetition. Personally, I would rather read unique phrasing and new examples, but the points were strong and hit home either way.
Overall, if the intention is "to awaken, enlighten, enrich and inspire,” Buddhist Boot Camp accomplishes this with ease.