Sleeping in Caves

Sleeping in Caves

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A Sixties Himalayan Memoir

Marilyn Stablein

Trade Paper
US $16.00 /CAN $19.50

In 1965, Stablein drops out of Berkeley and travels to India and Nepal with her lover. Their brief getaway turns into a seven-year stay. "There are times when I ask myself," Stablein writes, "What am I am doing here? My answer: to paint, to study a culture; to uncover its secrets; to listen to the whisperings, the sacred oral traditions; to learn by heart the names and faces of deities so I can capture their images on paper and strive to imbue each image with the greatness of its namesake, its spiritual essence. Art is my muse and practice. The world is my palette, artists my teachers; art lives and breathes in the people I meet."

In the heyday of the ’60s Stablein encounters luminaries of the American counterculture like Ram Dass whom she accompanies to interview HH, the Dalai Lama, on the spiritual value of LSD. Later, when the Indian police come to arrest Stablein for having an expired visa, Kalu Rinpoche quips "The Buddha never had visas," and orders her to hide in a closet next to his tantric human bone costumes.

Includes photos and recipes.


"The author’s eye is wide open, and her writing is fresh, funny, and exhilarating." —Peter Matthiessen

"Marilyn Stablein’s wry voice tells how it was, calmly and clearly, unadorned…whether on the ground with sadhus and chapatis or in the sky with diamonds, these wry prose poems evoke a last epiphany of the best of East and West." —Keith Dowman, author of The Power Places of Tibet

"A travelog, spiritual journey, and cultural study all in one" —Library Journal, October 2003

"Stablein has done the job of a poet recounting her sojourn into another country, another time, another mode of being." —Wigglefish.Com, October 2003


Marilyn Stablein, writer, artist, and performer, is the author of seven books and a frequent performer of her work. Her art has been widely exhibited.