“Have you read a good Buddhist novel lately?” That question was put to a friend of mine years ago by a Princeton University PhD candidate. The focus of her studies was early, modern Japanese literature (including Buddhist writing), and frankly, it was pretty boring stuff. She was discovering Buddhism lacks one element that makes any story compelling and worth listening to over and over. The irony is that this same element is missing from the modern retelling of Christmas; which makes it an all-too-familiar tale most people turn off after December 25th. What’s missing?
Imagination and meaning.
The scientifically studied odds of you changing an unhealthy or life-threatening habit are nine to one against you.1 This revelation unnerved many people in the audience in November of 2004 at IBM’s “Global Innovation Outlook” conference. The company’s top executives had invited the most farsighted thinkers they knew from around the world to come together in New York and propose solutions to some really big problems, starting with health care. I bet they overlooked one especially farsighted author.