Elegant Failure: A Guide to Zen Koans
Zen koans are stories of exchanges between Zen masters and their disciples at the moment of enlightenment or near-enlightenment. These stories have long fascinated Western readers because of their wisdom, humor, and enigmatic quality. Drawing on over 30 years of practice and teaching, Richard Shrobe (himself a recognized Zen Master) has selected 22 cases from The Blue Cliff Record and Wu-men-kuan that he finds deeply meaningful and helpful for meditation practice. In Elegant Failure, he provides a wealth of background information and personal anecdotes for each koan that help to illuminate its meaning without detracting from its paradoxical nature. As Shrobe reminds us, "The main core of Zen teaching is the bare bones of what is there. In a certain sense, embellishing a story takes away from the central teaching: Don't embellish anything, just be with it as it is."
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C ha p t e r 4National Teacher Chungs SeamlessMonument
C ha p t e r 5Nanchuans Flowering Tree
C ha p t e r 6Teshan Carrying His Bundle
C ha p t e r 7Yangshan Asks Sansheng What IsYour Name?
C ha p t e r 1 3Yunmens Bell Sound and SevenFold Robe
C ha p t e r 1 4Tungshans Three Pounds of Flax
C ha p t e r 1 5Hsuanshas Three Kinds of Sick People
C ha p t e r 1 6You Are Huichao
C ha p t e r 1 7Hsianglins Meaning of the Comingfrom the West
C ha p t e r 1 8Toushuais Three Gates
C ha p t e r 1 9Manjushris Before Three Three
C ha p t e r 2 0Vimalakirtis NotTwo Dharma Gate
C ha p t e r 8Tungshans No Cold or Hot
C ha p t e r 9Teshan Carrying His Bowls
C ha p t e r 1 0Sanshengs Golden FishWho Has Passed Through the Net
C ha p t e r 1 1Hoshans Knowing How to Hit the Drum
C ha p t e r 1 2Juiyen Calls Master
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