A young man's fascinating journey to find inner peace
This is the autobiography of a young man with Aspergers (autism), telling the tale of the author’s extraordinary outer and inner journeys to make sense of the world – his world – which is at the same time bravely honest, despairing and inspiring.
Paperback ISBN 9781909320581
12.9 x 1.2 x 19.8 cm
Published Dec 2017
Adults who live with autism, anxiety, depression or know someone who does/ Or just a love travel and East Asia!
Thomas Clements has always been an outsider, preferring to fantasise about the exotic East and lose himself amongst the chaotic sights, sounds and smells of London’s Chinatown rather than face the reality of his existence in Western suburbia.
Despite doing badly at school, his natural talent for memorising details and his extraordinary ability to master foreign languages lands him a place at university. But this is not a habitat in which he thrives. Following a stint in a psychiatric ward while on his year abroad in Germany, he secretly drops out from his studies, and from life.
When his parents receive an invitation to Clement’s graduation ceremony, where they will discover their son has lied all along and has not attained a degree after all, he does what he always does. He hatches a plan to run away, rather than face reality. This time to a job teaching English in rural China, where he can hide from everyone and everything. But wherever Clements runs, things go from bad to worse: the teaching isn’t what he thought it would be, modern China is not as romantic as he had imagined, people he counts on as friends ultimately move on, and his first encounter with a girl leaves him questioning his identity as a man.
It doesn’t matter where Clements tries to hide in the world, his anxiety and depression always get the better of him. Now he finally realises he has nowhere in the world to run, will Clements find a way to gain inner peace before he self-destructs?
The Autistic Buddha is a stunning tale of the author’s extraordinary outer and inner journeys to make sense of the world – his world – which is at the same time bravely honest, despairing and inspiring.
Born in 1988, Thomas Clements grew up in Epping and attended the Anglo European School in Ingatestone. It was there he discovered his love of languages for which he showed a remarkable aptitude that earned him a place on a prestigious exchange with the Goethe Gymnasium in Frankfurt. He subsequently attended the University of Nottingham where he went on to read German. However his social awkwardness meant he was unable to integrate into campus life and, as a result of poor mental health, he was forced to drop out. With limited career prospects in the UK, he decided to cut loose and wing it in Asia, funding his travels by working as an English teacher in China. Since returning to the UK, he decided to address his mental health difficulties and, in the process, received an official diagnosis of Asperger's Syndrome. He now intends to continue writing about his experiences of living on the Autism spectrum with characteristic honesty and good humour.
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