What Is Zen?: Plain Talk for a Beginner's Mind

What Is Zen Plain Talk for a Beginner s Mind An accessible and enjoyable introduction to Zen Buddhist practice in a reader friendly question and answer format by two highly regarded teacher writers The question and answer format makes this intro

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  • Title: What Is Zen?: Plain Talk for a Beginner's Mind
  • Author: Norman Fischer Susan Moon
  • ISBN: 9781611802436
  • Page: 448
  • Format: Paperback
  • An accessible and enjoyable introduction to Zen Buddhist practice in a reader friendly question and answer format by two highly regarded teacher writers.The question and answer format makes this introduction to Zen especially easy to understand and also to use as a reference, as you can easily look up just the question you had in mind The esteemed Zen teacher Norman FiscAn accessible and enjoyable introduction to Zen Buddhist practice in a reader friendly question and answer format by two highly regarded teacher writers.The question and answer format makes this introduction to Zen especially easy to understand and also to use as a reference, as you can easily look up just the question you had in mind The esteemed Zen teacher Norman Fischer and his old friend and teaching colleague Susan Moon both of them in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki, author of Zen Mind, Beginner s Mind give this collaborative effort a playful tone Susan asks a question on our behalf, Norman answers it, and then Sue challenges him By the time you get through their conversations, you ll have a good basic education in Zen not only the history, theory, and practice but also the contemporary issues, such as gender inequality, sexual ethics, and the tension between Asian traditions and the modern American reality.

    One thought on “What Is Zen?: Plain Talk for a Beginner's Mind”

    1. I purchased this book - for a very modest price - in a store I visited primarily to buy incense. It was a sympathy buy - but I should have known better, for this store was also the type to peddle in healing crystals, astrological calendars, and other such bullshit.I have twice attempted to wrap my mind around Zen, the first from D.T. Suzuki, the second time from Alan Watts. Both times I felt the subject to be lacking in substance, but also felt a richness lay beyond the horizon - which could be [...]

    2. I bought this book from Norman directly, and when I told him that I have a daily Buddhist practice he told me that "Plain Talk for a Beginner's Mind" did not mean this book was simple. And indeed it is not, though it is easy to read. In the form of questions and answers, it combines Fischer's extensive knowledge with his ability to teach simply. In the end, though, it rather discouraged me in an odd fashion. Fischer admits in these pages that intensive Zen practice will not necessarily transform [...]

    3. This slim volume was a really great tool in getting my footing in the Zen tradition, its history, and its doctrines. Before diving into the book, I felt iffy about the FAQ setup of the text, but I soon found this back and forth between Moon and Fischer to be endearing, and to make the concepts of Zen quite relatable and friendly to the reader. I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone who wants specifics on meditation, it's geared more towards those who want a survey of Zen and all it encompasses [...]

    4. This book was a great introduction to the world of Zen. The topics covered just skim the surface and leave room to dive into more depth. The questions answered in this book were mostly ones beginners might have when wanting to emerge themselves into Zen. Though Zen is a religion by this books' standards it can also be looked at as more of a way of life. For me this book gave me the perspective that I personally have to interpret Zen the way I want to see it and not through the eyes of someone el [...]

    5. 3.5 stars This is a simple question and answer book. Some of the questions seemed irrelevant to me but quite a few were questions I had often wondered and asked my Buddhist friends. Unfortunately with many Zen practitioners you could get 100 different answers from 100 different people. The questions and answers in the book were able to give me a little more insight to some of the nagging questions that I found frustrating to get legitimate answers to. Some questions in the book: In maintaining a [...]

    6. If you are interested in better understanding Zen, especially as a religion, then this is a solid book. I was interested in new kernels of wisdom from Norman Fischer for my mindfulness practice, and he does provide a few of those too. One bit in particular struck a chord: "If you insist that time is a limited container that's nearly full and now you are trying to stuff three or four more things into it, then yes, you are too busy. You become anxious. But if you recognize that time is life, then [...]

    7. great book to begin learning about zen and Buddhism. just finished it so it's too early to say but it may be life changing.

    8. Not exactly the "beginner's manual" that the title indicates. More a conversation where the former Abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center is quizzed by a friend on those questions that students might be too intimidated to ask. ("Are you enlightened?")A refreshingly candid conversation with one of the more critical Zen thinkers of our time.

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