What the Buddha Never Taught: 20th Anniversary Edition A ‘behind the robes” account of life in a Thai forest monastery

 In Pahnanachat, the monks keep the 227 rules laid down by the Buddha, including refraining from all killing. But how does a foreign monk cope with cobra in the outhouse, or the temptation of a Mars Bar in his begging bowl? Find out, in this newly reincarnated 20th anniversary edition, with a new introduction by the author and a new foreword by Wade Davis.


  • According to Ward’s delightful account of a stay in a Buddhist monastery in Thailand, there are many things that the Buddha never taught. One is the extreme rigor of the Pah Nanachat monastery, involving rising at 3 a.m. for chanting, walking on gravel roads in bare feet and eating only one meal a day. Another, Ward concludes, is that all this self-denial and sacrifice is ultimately hollow. The final lesson is the redemptive power of laughter. Ward, a Canadian journalist, traveled around Asia for six years, eventually winding up at Pah Nanachat, which was built to spread Theravada Buddhism to farangs (or non-Thais). Among the motley crew the author finds at the monastery are an ex-gospel singer from England, a former accountant from China and a former real estate millionaire from Chicago. The head monk is an Australian who used to play jazz guitar in his last life. The book is Ward’s affectionate, and often very humorous, account of his sojourn in this place of meditation and renunciation. The volume could have been improved by some sharp editing, but its little redundancies and repetitions help capture the often monotonous life of the monk. ~ Publisher’s Weekly
  • eBook £6.99 || $9.99
  • Aug 30, 2013. 978-1-78279-202-4.
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  • Paperback £11.99 || $20.95
  • Aug 30, 2013. 978-1-78279-203-1.