Finding the Still Point: A Beginner's Guide to Zen Meditation

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Overview

One of Zen Buddhism’s most respected teachers offers a complete introduction to Zen meditation in 96 short pages and a 70-minute CD. Using straightforward language, John Daido Loori explains everything new meditators need to know to begin practicing—including where to sit (on a chair, cushion, or bench), how to position the body (complete with instructional photographs), and how to practice Zen meditation to calm the mind. The second section offers a taste of Buddhist theory with a passage from the famed Zen poem...
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Overview

One of Zen Buddhism’s most respected teachers offers a complete introduction to Zen meditation in 96 short pages and a 70-minute CD. Using straightforward language, John Daido Loori explains everything new meditators need to know to begin practicing—including where to sit (on a chair, cushion, or bench), how to position the body (complete with instructional photographs), and how to practice Zen meditation to calm the mind. The second section offers a taste of Buddhist theory with a passage from the famed Zen poem The Faith in Mind Sutra, which extols the virtues of the open, unbiased nature of the beginner’s mind.There are also over twenty inspiring photographs to help establish the mood of meditation, as well as an annotated reading list for those who would like to learn more about Buddhism.The accompanying CD is an ideal meditation companion that new meditators can play each time they want to practice. With timed meditation periods and a Dharma talk, it creates the structure and feeling of sitting at a Zen monastery. The CD features: A twenty-minute meditation session with a pleasing gong at the beginning, guided instruction by John Daido Loori, and a gong to conclude the sitting A forty-minute meditation period for those who would like to practice for a longer amount of time (with gongs to signify the beginning and end of the sitting period) 
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Loori, the revered and celebrated founder and abbot of Zen Mountain Monastery in New York, has authored numerous books on Zen Buddhist practice (The Eight Gates of Zen). In this ultraslim illustrated primer, Loori distills that experience and wisdom into a resolute and economical guide for beginners. It will likely become a classic. Part One addresses the Zen basics such as meditation positions, hara focus, breathing, walking meditation and home practice. This section is particularly friendly for beginners with its concise instructional essays, most under 1,000 words. Loori's deceptively simple prose, arising from decades of practice and teaching, hits its mark as an arrow hits center target: the means and results are evident, but the flight is elegantly invisible. Part Two, a dharma talk on "The Great Way," effectively imparts "a direct expression of the spirit of Zen by the teacher to his . . . students." Tools such as an appropriately short glossary and suggested reading list are complemented by a 70-minute CD (not heard by PW). The CD offers timed zazen sessions of 10 and 30 minutes, plus a brief talk by Loori on the benefits of meditation. This book-and-CD package promises to be a graceful gem in the legendary cosmic Diamond Net. (Sept.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Library Journal

A famed teacher of Zen-you'll know him from works like The Healing Power of Soundand Zen of Creativity-gives instructions on how to meditate, covering basics like where and how to sit. With a 70-minute CD.


—Graham Christian
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781882795017
  • Publisher: Dharma Communications
  • Publication date: 12/28/1996
  • Pages: 54

Meet the Author

John Daido Loori is the abbot of the Zen Mountain Monastery in Mount Tremper, New York, and the founder and director of the Mountains and Rivers Order, an organization of associated Zen Buddhist temples, practice centers, and meditation groups from around the United States and abroad. He is also president of Dharma Communications, an enterprise devoted to making Buddhist teachings widely available through videotapes, books, meditation supplies, and a quarterly journal, Mountain Record. Devoted to maintaining authentic Zen training, he has developed a distinctive style of teaching, called the Eight Gates of Zen, involving both monastic and lay students in a program that embraces every aspect of daily life. He is a dharma heir of the influential Japanese Zen master Taizan Maezumi Roshi and is the author of The Heart of Being: Moral and Ethical Teachings of Zen Buddhism.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 16, 2011

    Perfect to get you started

    Over the years I have read many intro to meditation books. This short read is a fantastic guide to explain the basics (with a Zen approach) and keep the readers attention.

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  • Posted August 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Finding the Still Point

    It was a ok book to read very short and concise and to the point but I thought that their would be a lot more substance to a hard bound book with this name attached to it. It does have a cd with it that I haven't listed to yet but plan to. It is a good first naritive to very beginners starting to learn Zen and or emptyness etc... I did enjoy the writers style the writer souynds like they did know what they were talking about which is a very good thing:)..

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    Posted October 12, 2010

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    Posted May 4, 2009

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    Posted June 18, 2009

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    Posted November 30, 2009

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