When I started reading Buddha In The Trenches: The Timeless System For Developing Unshakable Performance Under Pressure, by Dr. Steve Taubman, I discovered that it had nothing to do with Buddhism as I initially thought. Despite the tricky title, I remained with it, thinking that there would be something still for to learn about, something new to discover, obviously not knowing I would be wrong.
My main issue with this book is that the author doesn’t respect the fact that being a reasonable optimistic and being ridiculously sugar coated are two similar, yet totally different things. He freely flirts with them both at the same time, making this a difficult reading.
Taubman’s writing style made it hard for me to follow the idea between so many adjectives and uncountable motivational phrases. I understand that he wants us to be happy, to understand the idea that happiness is not a goal but a decision, yet he repeated himself so many times I got lost.
The very same things happened at the beginning of the book. Taubman promises so often in all of the pages that this book will change our lives it becomes tedious, boring, to follow the track of anything he says afterward. Is not when he explains many points that I started to process the actual content, which wasn’t as present as I wished.
I can perfectly understand the purpose of Dr. Taubman when he tries to cheer the reader, make them feel empowered, capable and mighty, there’s nothing wrong with that. The problem arrived when I felt he was trying to deny the harsh parts of life, the difficulty of certain things by praising the potential in all of us, as if putting on a thumbs-up attitude was as easy as blinking.
One of the things I always do is taking notes of what I read, precise quotes of the book I’m with so I can consult, re read and then think more deeply about their ideas. I may not be in the targeted audience for Buddha In The Trenches or maybe I was the wrong reader for it, but I have not a single phrase of it in my notes.
However, I cannot deny the fundamental, yet simple ideas Steve Taubman tried to explain in his work. Western culture has been characterized for its stress levels, the rising cases of depression, anxiety and panic, all of the as a consequence of that exact same cause; we may put the guilt on wrongly preconceived ideas such as that of happiness as a goal.
To have some of the author’s own experiences and how he applied his own teachings in his daily life served as a perfect example of what it should be in our cases once we take advantage of our own potential. It was a nice break to forget about statistics, plans, cases and techniques by reading about his dog messing in an airport, just to name one of the cases.
I would only recommend Buddha In The Trenches for those who strongly enjoy the self-help genre, as I see it very improbable to someone else to like it or be able to understand it. Despite the idea and the intention in this project is noble, the method has his failures.
Buddha In The Trenches
Print Length: 135 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (November 28, 2017)
Publication Date: November 28, 2017
About the author:
Dr. Steve Taubman is an author, speaker, hypnotist, physician, and mindfulness coach. He’s spoken to organizations worldwide on the topic of mindset management, and has received rave reviews for his unique programs combining inspiration with entertainment.
About the reviewer:
Bader Saab is a writer, blogger and alternative journalist. He has worked with specialized publications on entertainment, comics, witchcraft, Gothic subculture and any other topic that he discovers on the Internet and finds interesting. You can visit him on his personal, bilingual blog: https://tintanocturna.blogspot.com/