Essential Zen

Front Cover
Kazuaki Tanahashi, Tensho David Schneider
HarperCollins Publishers, 1994 - Religion - 174 pages
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Yet the teachings of ancient Chinese masters were recorded by their students, discussed, sometimes chanted, and given out as objects of meditation or koans. And, as Kazuaki Tanahashi points out, "However weird or enigmatic they are, or perhaps because of those very qualities, Zen stories have touched the hearts of people for over a thousand years." In Essential Zen, Tanahashi and Schneider present many of the classic writings regarded as "essential" in the East Asian Zen traditions along with a vibrant assortment of American Zen stories, poems, and teachings that reflect the present flowering of Zen in the West. At turns spare, elegant, witty, deeply serious, and marvelously humorous, these are reflections on everything from practical meditation techniques and the tasks of daily life to death, the environment, and activism.

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Essential Zen

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Like many Zen texts, this book begins with a mild apology for the irony of creating yet another collection of words for something that claims to exist outside the realm of words. Once this has been ... Read full review

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About the author (1994)

Tanahashi was born in Japan where he studied painting and calligraphy. He is a Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science.

David M. Schneider is professor emeritus of anthropology at the University of Chicago and at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

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