The Master Director: A Journey through Politics, Doubt and Devotion with a Himalayan Master
Author: Thomas Shor
Format: Kindle Edition
Publisher: Merri Hill Press
Release Date: January 19, 2014
‘Maybe you shouldn’t go back to Darjeeling. It might not be safe for you…’
The lama was in the next room. It was 2 a.m. He was trying to calm his attendants. I think the boys wanted to kill me.
This was my last day with Gurudev.
In this riveting true story, when Thomas K. Shor, an adventuring American writer with an ear for unusual stories, wanders into a Himalayan mountain village and into the life of an enigmatic spiritual master known as Gurudev he has no idea of what he is getting into.
As Gurudev, a Tibetan Buddhist lama, lavishes the author with presents and invites him into his inner circle—thereby offering him, and us, a unique glimpse into a master’s life and his teachings—it seems destiny is at work. But what happens when it turns out the master has close ties with the local dictator and his henchmen and Shor finds himself being hosted at some of their houses? How is he to reconcile the religion of love with the violence of politics? Gurudev’s ‘engaged Buddhism’ not only stretches common notions of morality, but also spins Shor’s moral compass. Ultimately, the author flees Darjeeling under physical threat and abandons the writing of this book—until now.
The Master Director, richly illustrated with over 60 photos, probes the limits of charisma and scepticism, devotion and doubt. And throughout, Shor’s captivating story treads the fine line of openness without credulity, and questioning without prejudice. While the warnings are many against mixing religion and politics, they combine in this entertaining tale set in the politically tumultuous foothills of India’s eastern Himalayas to reveal profound insights into the nature of both the human and the divine.