The book is on the New York Times hardcover and nonfiction Best Sellers List. It is #9 on the combined hardcover and paperback nonfiction Best Sellers List.
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All my life I’ve been interested in expressing my truth in ways that almost anyone can understand. A famous Japanese Zen master, Hakuun Yasutani Roshi, said that unless you can explain Zen in words that a fisherman will comprehend, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Some fifty years ago a UCLA professor told me the same thing about applied mathematics. We like to hide from the truth behind foreign sounding words or mathematical lingo. There’s a saying: The truth is
always encountered but rarely perceived. If we don’t perceive it, we can’t help ourselves and we can’t much help anyone else.
I met the Dude on DVD sometime in the late 1990s. A few years later I met Jeff Bridges in Santa Barbara and we started hanging, as he likes to put it, often while smoking cigars. Jeff has done movies from an early age; less known, but almost as long-standing, is his commitment to ending world hunger. I was an aeronautical engineer and mathematician in my early years, but mostly I’ve taught Zen Buddhism, and that’s where we both met. Not just in meditation, which is what most people think of when they hear Zen, but the Zen of action, of living freely in the world without causing harm, of relieving our own suffering and the suffering of others.
We soon discovered that we would often be joined by another shadowy figure, somebody called the Dude. We both liked his way of putting things and it’s fun to learn from someone you can’t see. Only his words were so pithy they needed more expounding; hence, this book.
May it meet with his approval, and may it benefit all beings.
JUST THROW THE FU**ING BALL, MAN!
1. Sometimes You Eat the Bear, and Sometimes, Well, He Eats You
2. It’s Down There Somewhere, Let Me Take Another Look
3. Dude, You’re Being Very UnDude
THE DUDE ABIDES AND THE DUDE IS NOT IN
4. Yeah, Well, Ya Know, That’s Just Like, uh, Your Opinion, Man
5. Phone’s Ringin’, Dude
6. New Sh** Has Come to Light
THAT RUG REALLY TIED THE ROOM TOGETHER, DID IT NOT?
7. You Know, Dude, I Myself Dabbled in Pacifism at One Point. Not in ’Nam, Of Course.
8. You Mean Coitus?
9. What Makes a Man, Mr. Lebowski?
10. What Do You Do, Mr. Lebowski?
11. Nothing’s Fu**ed, Dude
ENJOYIN’ MY COFFEE
12. Sorry, I Wasn’t Listening
13. Strikes and Gutters, Ups and Downs
14. Some Burgers, Some Beers, a Few Laughs. Our Fu**ing Troubles Are Over, Dude.
15. Say, Friend, Ya Got Any More of That Good Sarsaparilla?