Chan Buddhism has become paradigmatic of Buddhist spirituality. Known in Japan as Zen and in Korea as Son, it is one of the most strikingly iconoclastic spiritual traditions in the world. This succinct and lively work clearly expresses the meaning of Chan as it developed in China more than a thousand years ago and provides useful insights into the distinctive aims and forms of practice associated with the tradition, including its emphasis on the unity of wisdom and practice; the reality of "sudden awakening"; the importance of meditation; the use of "shock tactics"; the centrality of the teacher-student relationship; and the celebration of enlightenment narratives, or koans. Unlike many scholarly studies, which offer detailed perspectives on historical development, or guides for personal practice written by contemporary Buddhist teachers, this volume takes a middle path between these two approaches, weaving together both history and insight to convey to the general reader the conditions, energy, and creativity that characterize Chan. Following a survey of the birth and development of Chan, its practices and spirituality are fleshed out through stories and teachings drawn from the lives of four masters: Bodhidharma, Huineng, Mazu, and Linji. Finally, the meaning of Chan as a living spiritual tradition is addressed through a philosophical reading of its practice as the realization of wisdom, attentive mastery, and moral clarity.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
The Buddhist Roots of Chan
Differences in Indian and Chinese Cultural Contexts
Early Developments in Chinese Buddhism
The Early History of the Chan Tradition
Exemplars of Chan Homegrown Buddhas
Chan Practice as Philosophy and Spirituality
Chan Now? Why and for Whom?
advocacy attentive virtuosity beneﬁt Bodhi Bodhidharma bodhisattva Buddha buddha-nature Buddhist practice Buddhist teachings Buddhist texts century Chan awakening Chan Buddhism Chan masters Chan practice Chan tradition Chan’s China Chinese Buddhists Chinese culture clear conduct conﬁdence conﬂict Confucian crucial Daoism demonstrating developed dharma dhism dhist direction dramatic dynasty emptiness energy enlightenment expression ﬁeld ﬁnal ﬁnally ﬁnd ﬁrst ﬁxed ﬂow fully Han dynasty Hongren horizons Huangbo Huayan Huineng human improvisational Indian Buddhist inﬁnite insists interdependence karma karmic Laozi liberating intimacy lineage Linji living Mahakasyapa Mahayana Mazu Mazu’s means meditation mind monk moral clarity nirvana nonduality offering one’s original nature ourselves path patterns Platform Sutra present Pure Land readiness to awaken realizing reﬂecting relationships relevance religious respond as needed responsibility ritual root Shenxiu Siddhartha Gautama signiﬁcant sitting situation social speciﬁc suffering sufﬁcient teachers things Tiantai tion translated transmission trouble truth understanding wisdom Xuanzang Zhuangzi