This is the rare kind of interreligious book that speaks from its author’s perspective and tradition (Buddhism) in ways that create a community of people of all spiritual traditions. The author is an experienced Dharma leader, chaplain, activist, theologian, and hospice worker, and most of the examples she offers are from her Buddhism, but there is also much more.

Ayo Yetunde feels that only a community-based circle of people representing a variety of spiritual traditions, committed to being connected, can create the environment necessary to overcome our current polarization.

Chapter 2 is essential: “Beyond the Golden Rule: Treating Others as They Need to Be Treated.” Ayo Yetunde teaches the Platinum Rule instead of the Golden Rule, the difference being that the Platinum Rule does not rely only on treating others as we want to be treated, but focuses instead on “learning about and respecting difference, and perhaps ultimately gaining cultural competencies we would otherwise never develop.” She presents various stages of discovery, including recognizing human complexity, acknowledging imperfection, and cultivating selflessness. She offers a variety of spiritual practices, including “cultivating a non-anxious presence”; also, among others: “Affirm the emotional experience.” “Reveal bright eyes and smile.” “Encourage wisdom teachings.”

Other chapters engage Buddhist ideas and practices with Christian and Hindu ones, as when koans are found in the “relational wholeworking in stories of Jesus” (ch. 4) and when lessons of the Bhagavad-Gita are offered, through experiences in the life of the author, for learning to “act without attachment to outcomes” (ch. 6).

This is just a taste of what is in this book. It is a rich feast.

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