Zen Questions: Zazen, Dogen, and the Spirit of Creative Inquiry

Zen Questions: Zazen, Dogen, and the Spirit of Creative Inquiry

by Taigen Dan Leighton
     
 

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Whether speaking of student or master, Zen hinges on the question. Zen practice does not necessarily focus on the answers, but on finding a space in which we may sustain uncertainty and remain present and upright in the middle of investigations. Zen Questions begins by exploring "The World of Zazen,"--the foundational practice of the Zen school--presenting it…  See more details below

Overview

Whether speaking of student or master, Zen hinges on the question. Zen practice does not necessarily focus on the answers, but on finding a space in which we may sustain uncertainty and remain present and upright in the middle of investigations. Zen Questions begins by exploring "The World of Zazen,"--the foundational practice of the Zen school--presenting it as an attitude of sustained inquiry that offers us an entryway into true repose and joy. From there, Leighton draws deeply on his own experience as a Zen scholar and teacher to invite us into the creativity of Zen awareness and practice. He explores the poetic mind of Dogen with the poetry of Rumi, Mary Oliver, Gary Snyder, and even "the American Dharma Bard" Bob Dylan. What's more, Leighton uncovers surprising resonances between the writings of America's Founding Fathers--including Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin--and the liberating ideals at the heart of Zen.

Editorial Reviews

Jane Hirshfield
"Zen Questions equally introduces and expands our American understanding of Buddhist teachings, and of the many possibilities in navigating our own lives." --
Roshi Joan Halifax
"This is a wise and inspiring book."
Susan Moon
"Taigen Leighton is full of compassion for the reader, whether a beginning or experienced practitioner."
Christopher Ives
"Leighton offers his readers an impressive array of insights into Soto Zen meditation practice."
Peter Coyote (HoSho JiShi
"Clear, accurate and eminently useful."
Zoketsu Norman Fischer
"These delightful essays take us another step down the long lonesome road toward naturalizing dharma into our own cultural matrix."
James Ishmael Ford
"This is an incredibly valuable book, useful for anyone who wishes to integrate their heart-work with work in the world."
David Chadwick
"Taigen Dan Leighton has done his homework, digs deep, and comes up with treasure."
Steven Heine
"Brilliant text."
Lewis Richmond
"Unique and scintillating. I highly recommend this book to anyone who cherishes the illumination of wisdom both ancient and modern."
From the Publisher

Zen Questions equally introduces and expands our American understanding of Buddhist teachings, and of the many possibilities in navigating our own lives.” —Jane Hirshfield

"This is a wise and inspiring book."—Roshi Joan Halifax, author of Being with Dying

"Taigen Leighton is full of compassion for the reader, whether a beginning or experienced practitioner."—Susan Moon, author of Not Turning Away: The Practice of Engaged Buddhism

"Leighton offers his readers an impressive array of insights into Soto Zen meditation practice."—Christopher Ives, author of Imperial-Way Zen

"Clear, accurate and eminently useful."—Peter Coyote (HoSho JiShi, ordination name), actor and author.

"These delightful essays take us another step down the long lonesome road toward naturalizing dharma into our own cultural matrix."—Zoketsu Norman Fischer, author of Sailing Home

“This is an incredibly valuable book, useful for anyone who wishes to integrate their heart-work with work in the world.”—James Ishmael Ford, author of Zen Master WHO? co-editor of The Book of Mu

"Taigen Dan Leighton has done his homework, digs deep, and comes up with treasure." —David Chadwick, author of Crooked Cucumber: the Life and Zen Teaching of Shunryu Suzuki

“Brilliant text.”
—Steven Heine, author of Did Dogen Go to China

“Unique and scintillating. I highly recommend this book to anyone who cherishes the illumination of wisdom both ancient and modern.” —Lewis Richmond, author of Work as a Spiritual Practice

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780861716456
Publisher:
Wisdom Publications MA
Publication date:
11/22/2011
Pages:
312
Sales rank:
745,143
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

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Meet the Author

Taigen Dan Leighton, Soto Zen priest and successor in the Suzuki Roshi lineage, received Dharma Transmission in 2000 from Reb Anderson Roshi and is Dharma Teacher at Ancient Dragon Zen Gate in Chicago. After residing for years at San Francisco Zen Center and Tassajara monastery, Taigen also practiced for two years in Kyoto, Japan. Taigen is author of Zen Questions: Zazen, Dogen, and the Spirit of Creative Inquiry, Faces of Compassion: Classic Bodhisattva Archetypes and Their Modern Expression, and Visions of Awakening Space and Time: Dogen and the Lotus Sutra. He has edited and co-translated several Zen texts including: Dogen's Extensive Record: A Translation of Eihei Koroku, Cultivating the Empty Field: The Silent Illumination of Zen Master Hongzhi, Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community, and The Wholehearted Way, and has contributed to many other books and journals. Taigen teaches online at Berkeley Graduate Theological Union, from where he has a PhD. He has taught at other universities including Saint Mary's College, the California Institute of Integral Studies, and in Chicago at Meadville Lombard Theological Seminary and Loyola University Chicago. Taigen has long been active in social justice programs, including Peace and Environmental Activism.

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