TRIALS: Case of the Buddhist Sergeant

When John David Provoo was six years old, he fell from the second-story porch of his home near San Francisco and fractured his skull on a concrete courtyard. The injury may or may not have permanently affected his brain, but for most of his life he has acted like an exceedingly odd duck. When he was eleven, he became a devotee of Buddhism; later, a Buddhist priest taught young Provoo to read, write and speak Japanese. In 1940 he went to Japan to learn more about Buddhism, lived in a Buddhist monastery near Tokyo. Back in the U.S., he...

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