The Unexpected Way

The Unexpected Way

3.57 (19 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 3 business days
When will my order arrive?


The story of one man's unexpected pilgrimage from Buddhism to Catholicism.There are Christians who, in mid-life decide to abandon their Christian faith and become Buddhists. Paul Williams did the opposite. After twenty years spent practising and teaching Tibetan Buddhism in Britain, scholar and broadcaster Paul Williams astonished his family and friends in 1999 by converting to Roman Catholicism. Williams explains why he joined a Church that many Buddhists and others might regard as a repressed and outdated way of life and belief. He argues that being a Catholic in the modern world is no less rational than being a Buddhist, and may in many respects, be more so.
show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 264 pages
  • 137.16 x 210.82 x 20.32mm | 317.51g
  • Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd.
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0567088308
  • 9780567088307
  • 768,079

Review quote

"The Unexpected Way is more than just the story of one man's conversion to Catholicism; it could be a turning point in the dialogue between Buddhism and Christianity." "[a] fascinating intellectual autobiography....What makes Williams' apologia for Christianity compelling is his awareness of the breadth and depth of the Buddhist tradition....While written is a conversational and accessible style, Williams has clearly thought through his Christian conversion." Amos Yong, Religious Studies Review, April 2003 "[Williams] is certainly among the half-dozen most widely read living interpreters of Buddhist thought to the West...Gratitude and joy are the main threads in the fabric of this book, and this explains why conversion narratives have been and continue to be so important for the church...This is a book to be grateful for in times like these....I hope the church will find ways to encourage such contributions by Williams, and that he will find time and energy to make them." Commonweal, 1/17/03 "A heartfelt and sensitive account it draws the reader in." Church Times, 7 June 2002 "The Unexpected Way is more than just the story of one man's conversion to Catholicism; it could be a turning point in the dialogue between Buddhism and Christianity, for it challenges Christians and Buddhists alike to test the consistency of their intellectual and moral convictions - as gold is tested in a furnace. Essential reading for Christians, their Buddhist friends, and all who would understand the life of faith in the heady confusion of our religiously plural world." Carol Zaleski, Professor of Religion and Chair of the Department of Religion and Biblical Literature, Smith College.
show more

About Paul Williams

Paul Williams is Professor of Indian and Tibetan Philosophy, Co-director of the Centre for Buddhist Studies, Head of the Department of Theology and Religious Studies. University of Bristol and the current President of the UK Association for Buddhist Studies.
show more

Rating details

19 ratings
3.57 out of 5 stars
5 32% (6)
4 26% (5)
3 26% (5)
2 0% (0)
1 16% (3)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X