Lion’s Roar Highlights Buddhist Books by and for People of Color


In response to a query from a reader, our editors suggest some books by and for people of color.

Illustration by Nolan Pelletier.

Question: Can you recommend some Buddhist books by and for people of color?

Answer: It used to be that pretty much the only Buddhist books in English were written by Asian teachers or white Buddhists. Fortunately, Buddhism is changing and diversifying, and many of today’s most interesting and insightful Buddhist writers are people of color.

Here are seven books by and for Buddhists of color to get you started: Taming the Ox: Buddhist Stories and Reflections on Politics, Race, Culture, and Spiritual Practice, by Charles R. Johnson (Shambhala); Mindful of Race: Transforming Racism from the Inside Out, by Ruth King (Sounds True)Sanctuary: A Meditation on Home, Homelessness, and Belonging, by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel (Wisdom); A Fierce Heart: Finding Strength, Courage, and Wisdom in Any Moment, by Spring Washam (Parallax); Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love, and Liberation, by Rev. angel Kyodo williams and Lama Rod Owens with Jasmine Syedullah (North Atlantic Books); Dreaming Me: Black, Baptist, and Buddhist—One Woman’s Spiritual Journey, by Jan Willis (Wisdom); Awakening Together: The Spiritual Practice of Inclusivity and Community, by Larry Yang (Wisdom).

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