Choosing Buddhism: The Life Stories of Eight Canadians
By Mauro Peressini
March 2016, ISBN 978-0-7766-2331-3
Mercury Series, Cultural Studies Paper 86
472 pages, 125 images, 17 x 24 cm
This book presents the life stories of eight Canadians who chose to convert to Buddhism. They were amongst the first Canadians to have chosen Buddhism, encountering this spirituality between the late 1960s and the 1980s. All became ordained or lay Buddhist teachers, having embraced Buddhist teachings and practices in their daily lives.
Today, over 300,000 Canadians identify their religious affiliation as Buddhist. The great majority are of Asian origin and were born into Buddhist families or were Buddhist at the time of their arrival in Canada. Since the late 1960s, however, the number of Canadians converting to Buddhism has doubled every decade, and now totals more than 20,000 individuals. The first-hand accounts in this book shed light on why and how people convert to a spirituality from such distant shores.