Dogen on Meditation and Thinking: A Reflection on His View of Zen
Thirty years after the publication of his classic work Dogen Kigen Mystical Realist, Hee-Jin Kim reframes and recasts his understanding of Dogen s Zen methodology in this new book. Through meticulous textual analyses of and critical reflections on key passages primarily from Dogen s Shobogenzo, Kim explicates hitherto underappreciated aspects of Dogen s religion, such as the ambiguity of delusion and also of enlightenment, intricacies of negotiating the Way, the dynamic functions of emptiness, the realizational view of language, nonthinking as the essence of meditation, and a multifaceted conception of reason. Kim also responds to many recent developments in Zen studies that have arisen in both Asia and the West, especially Critical Buddhism. He brings Dogen the meditator and Dogen the thinker into relief. Kim s study clearly demonstrates that language, thinking, and reason constitute the essence of Dogen s proposed Zen praxis, and that such a Zen opens up new possibilities for dialogue between Zen and contemporary thought. This fresh assessment of Dogen s Zen represents a radical shift in our understanding of its place in the history of Buddhism.
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