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Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind


Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind Cover

ISBN13: 9780834800793
ISBN10: 0834800799
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Zen mind is one of those enigmatic phrases used by Zen teachers to throw you back upon yourself, to make you go behind the words themselves and begin wondering. "I know what my own mind is," you tell yourself, "but what is Zen mind?" And then: "But do I really know what my own mind is?" Is it what I am doing now? Is it what I am thinking now?" And if you should then try to sit physically still for a while to see if you can locate it—then you have begun the practice of Zen, then you have begun to realize the unrestricted mind.

The innocence of this first inquiry—just asking what you are—is beginner's mind. The mind of the beginner is needed throughout Zen practice. It is the open mind, the attitude that includes both doubt and possibility, the ability to see things always as fresh and new. It is needed in all aspects of life. Beginner's mind is the practice of Zen mind.

This book originated from a series of talks given by Zen Master Shunryu Suzuki to a small group in Los Altos, California. He joined their meditation periods once a week and afterwards answered their questions and tried to encourage them in their practice of Zen and help them solve the problems of life. His approach is informal, and he draws his examples from ordinary events and common sense. Zen is now and here, he is saying; it can be as meaningful for the West as for the East. But his fundamental teaching and practice are drawn from all the centuries of Zen Buddhism and especially from Dogen, one of the most important and creative of all Zen Masters.


This text offers a series of insights into the Zen mind.

About the Author

Shunryu Suzuki (1904-1971) was one of the most influential spiritual teachers of the twentieth century and is truly a founding father of Zen in America. A Japanese priest of the Soto lineage, he taught in the United States from 1959 until his death. He was the founder of the San Francisco Zen Center and the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center. He is the author of Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind and Branching Streams Flow in the Darkness: Zen Talks on the Sandokai, and he is the subject of the biography Crooked Cucumber by David Chadwick.

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alchymyst, November 5, 2011 (view all comments by alchymyst)
This is an incredible little book. It's one of the first books I've read on Zen Buddhism when I was just starting my practice, and it's been with me ever since. Suzuki does not focus on attaining enlightenment. Instead, he teaches you to just sit and keep an open mind, to love practice for itself instead of because it might lead to satori. You can reread this book many times and find something new every time you do it.
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diamondgirl379, January 12, 2008 (view all comments by diamondgirl379)
Excellent book, I have this one too.
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Product Details

Dixon, Trudy
Dixon, Trudy
Suzuki, Shunryn
Suzuki, Shunryu
New York ;
Zen buddhism
Buddhism - General
Zen Buddhism -- Doctrines.
Meditation -- Zen Buddhism.
Buddhism - Zen
Edition Number:
1st rev. ed.
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8.22x5.52x.43 in. .56 lbs.

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Product details 132 pages Weatherhill - English 9780834800793 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , This text offers a series of insights into the Zen mind.
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