Zen and the Art of Poker: Timeless Secrets to Transform Your Game

Front Cover
Penguin, Nov 1, 1999 - Games & Activities - 192 pages
3 Reviews
Inside the intriguing world of poker lies a fascinating exercise in strategy and extreme concentration--many of the same principles that underpin the one-thousand-year-old philosophy of Zen spirituality. Zen and the Art of Poker is the first book to apply Zen theories to America's most popular card game, presenting tips that readers can use to enhance their game. Among the more than one hundred rules that comprise this book, readers will learn to:* Make peace with folding* Use inaction as a weapon* Make patience a central pillar of their strategy* Pick their times of confrontationUsing a concise and spare style, in the tradition of Zen practices and rituals, Zen and the Art of Poker traces a parallel track connecting the two disciplines by giving comments and inspirational examples from the ancient Zen masters to the poker masters of today.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - allawishus - LibraryThing

I really enjoyed reading this, even though I don't play poker. I thought it nicely outlined zen principles with a focus on competition and game-playing. My favorite zen proverb that I read in this book - "Everything is true just as it is: Why dislike it? Why hate it?" Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - HvyMetalMG - LibraryThing

There have been a lot of these "Zen and the Art of..." books. Not being much of a Buddhist, I figured I'd see what I can learn about poker from this philisophical perspective. I don't remember much ... Read full review


What Is Zen?
Take the Long View
Practice Practice Practice
The Road to Eventual Mastery
Calmness and Rhythm
Playing on Instinct
Emotions and Opponents

Prepare for the WorstCase Scenario
The Ordinary
The Egoless State
The End of SelfFrustrating Effort
The BackandForth Flow
Cyclical Luck
IIINuts and Bolts
Include Failure in the System
A Few Rules on Hesitating
Stealth Sneakiness and Cunning
The Poker Face and Body Language
Respect for Opponents
On Overconfidence Pride and Arrogance
Steaming and Other Emotions
Bad Luck and Losing
Examine Your Motives
Expertise in Sight
Zen and Tournament Play
Notes on Zen and Poker Computer Software

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About the author (1999)

Larry Phillips is a journalist, writer, and professional poker player. He has played poker most of his life and is equally comfortable competing with world-class players or two-dollar players. He lives in Monroe, Wisconsin, and placed second in the 1997 Wisconsin State Poker Tournament.

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