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Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies and the Truth About Reality
     

Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies and the Truth About Reality

4.4 16
by Brad Warner
 

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This is not your typical Zen book. Brad Warner, a young punk who grew up to be a Zen master, spares no one. This bold new approach to the "Why?" of Zen Buddhism is as strongly grounded in the tradition of Zen as it is utterly revolutionary. Warner's voice is hilarious, and he calls on the wisdom of everyone from punk and pop culture icons to the Buddha himself to make

Overview

This is not your typical Zen book. Brad Warner, a young punk who grew up to be a Zen master, spares no one. This bold new approach to the "Why?" of Zen Buddhism is as strongly grounded in the tradition of Zen as it is utterly revolutionary. Warner's voice is hilarious, and he calls on the wisdom of everyone from punk and pop culture icons to the Buddha himself to make sure his points come through loud and clear. As it prods readers to question everything, Hardcore Zen is both an approach and a departure, leaving behind the soft and lyrical for the gritty and stark perspective of a new generation.

The subtitle says it all: there has never been a book like this.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
There's a Zen story about a teacher who holds up his finger, then reminds his student to look beyond the finger itself, to what the finger is pointing at-the moon. That's what this book does: it transcends itself-and with outrageous style. Warner, an early-'80s hardcore punk musician, discovered Zen in college, moved to Japan to make B-grade monster movies, and eventually became a bona fide Zen master by formally receiving "dharma transmission." Yet true to his punk spirit, he relentlessly demands that all teaching, all beliefs, all authority-including his own-must be questioned. ("Why should you listen to me? Who the hell am I?... No one. No one at all.") By turns wickedly funny, profane, challenging and iconoclastic-but always with genuine kindness-Warner devotes chapters to some common Zen notions such as the oneness of reality ("Why Gene Simmons Is Not a Zen Master"), reincarnation ("In My Next Life I Want to Come Back as a Pair of Lucy Liu's Panties") and the vital importance of the present moment ("Eating a Tangerine is Real Enlightenment"). Yet this is no litany of Zen orthodoxy designed for study. By liberally sharing anecdotes from his own life as a down-and-out punk rocker and maker of monster movies, Warner constantly focuses on the importance of a direct experience of reality in all its rawness over adherence to any set of beliefs-even Zen ones. Entertaining, bold and refreshingly direct, this book is likely to change the way one experiences other books about Zen-and maybe even the way one experiences reality. (Sept.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Adult/High School-Warner has appropriated the phrase "Question authority," a longtime battle cry for the punk-rock aesthetic, for use as a Buddhist mantra. Much of his book is laid out like a memoir. Readers follow the author from high school and his interest in '70s rock music and philosophical thought through his musical career under names like Zero Defex and Dimentia 13 and finally to his dream job with the Japanese television studio that produces the popular live-action children's show, Ultra Man. The common threads throughout are a rabid interest in transcendental meditation and enlightenment. A conversational tone and endless streams of pop references to everything from Minor Threat to The Matrix movies make this a readable and even fun book. Warner stresses that enlightenment and meditation do not come easy, which separates his writing dramatically from many other Western books on Buddhism. It's nice to see someone with strong ties to rock coming down so hard on people like Terence McKenna or even the Beatles, who promoted drug use as a way toward higher thought. Although some of Warner's connections between Buddhism and the various pieces of pop culture are simplified, his idea of questioning is particularly striking. Not just questioning authority, but friends, oneself, and, yes, him. This wonderfully engaging primer just might get those more dubious, less willing readers to look at the world a bit differently.-Matthew L. Moffett, Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780861719891
Publisher:
Wisdom Publications MA
Publication date:
06/10/2005
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
423,867
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

Brad Warner lives in California. He has studied Soto Zen with Gudo Wafu Nishijima. If there is such a thing as a Zen Master (and there isn't), he is one (and he's not). In the early 80s, he was the bassist for ODFx (or Zero Defex), a hardcore punk band. After ODFx bit the dust, he made five albums under the band name Dimentia 13. After living in Japan for some time, he returned to the United States in 2012 to start the Dogen Sangha of Los Angeles.

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Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies, and the Truth about Reality 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've read alot of books about buddhism, and this is the first one I've been able to follow. Punk rocker Warner knows how to explain buddhism to idots like me.
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of-course More than 1 year ago
Question everything because only you know what's the right way for you to be you. Compelling, interesting, a great read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can't believe how clear (at least it speaks to me, greatly) and practical is this book and also Zen Wrapped In Karma Dipped In Chocolate, also by Brad Warner. He has finally given me the motivation to meditate, sit zazen, after years of procrastinating. Brad Warner's frankness and creativity are very refreshing and I appreciate his writing very much. I hope there might be another book on its way.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
brad is a great teacher, i've been fortunate enough to practice with him. this book is a great, simple, and entertaining story that really cuts through the b.s. of zen and gets to the core of the practice. parts of the book really pissed me off at first reading, but then i went back and re-read and they made perfect sense. we must truly understand being present, living in the moment and accept reality (it ain't what you think) this is zen for gen x!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've just finished reading this book and I am compelled to spread the word. Warner makes the basics of Buddhism accessible and even humorous. This book has helped me stop to examine my own life/reality, which is something that everyone can benefit from. I've never read up on Buddhism but I think this is a great introduction as Warner advises the reader to question authority and to live in the present. It's an informative, inspiring and enjoyable read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the book that spoke to me and made me feel in place. I feel more a part of everything. As a result I¿m more tolerable, peaceful and yet still living in reality (as real as I¿m currently able to comprehend and experience). I¿ve searched a long time for spiritual material that works for me and this did it. I¿ve bought copies for my entire family.
PaperBooksOnly More than 1 year ago
Love Brad's Work!