The Art of Just Sitting: Writings on the Zen Practice of Shikantaza

The Art of Just Sitting: Writings on the Zen Practice of Shikantaza

by John Daido Loori, Taigen Daniel Leighton
     
 
This comprehensive and unparalleled volume brings together a wealth of writings, from Bodhidharma and Dogen to the most prominent modern teachers, collecting the substantial core of centuries of Zen teachings.

Overview

This comprehensive and unparalleled volume brings together a wealth of writings, from Bodhidharma and Dogen to the most prominent modern teachers, collecting the substantial core of centuries of Zen teachings.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
When Loori, now abbot of Zen Mountain Monastery, began his Buddhist practice, he couldn't find much written on the subject of zazen (sitting meditation). This anthology's 22 selections seek to fill that perceived void. Eight ancient voices such as the Fourth Ancestor of Chinese Zen Great Master Dayi (A.D. 580-651) and Eihei Dogen (A.D. 1200-1253), the most important Japanese Zen master, are translated by accomplished scholars such as Thomas Cleary. Beyond a half dozen supporting texts in the glossary, the other selections are by contemporary authors such as Shunryu Suzuki (Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind). Taken together, the writing spans 1,500 years, all pointing to the practice of "just sitting," whereby no object (breath, candle, mandala, mantra, etc.) is used as a meditation focus. Differing from the other type of zazen wherein koans are studied, shikantaza-just sitting-is less pointed in its intent and methods. There are specific instructions here for location, posture and mental state, which will be helpful for beginners. Advanced practitioners can benefit from the more esoteric thoughts about "non-thinking." Minor flaws include repetitions about technique and contradictions about breath, the need for a teacher and so on. In the main, however, Loori has compiled a useful guide to "just sitting," promising "if you were to live for a hundred thousand years, you would never find in this life anything more powerful, more healing, [and] more empowering." (Oct.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780861713271
Publisher:
Wisdom Publications (MA)
Publication date:
11/28/2002
Edition description:
1ST WISDOM
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
6.08(w) x 8.94(h) x 0.78(d)

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