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Zen Culture

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  106 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Anyone who examines the Zen arts is immediately struck by how modern they seem. The ceramics of 16th-century Zen artists could be interchanged with the rugged pots of our own contemporary crafts movement; ancient calligraphies suggest the monochromes of Franz Kline or Willem de Kooning; the apparent nonsense and illogic of Zen parables (and No theater and Haiku poetry) est ...more
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Published August 20th 2010 by Smashwords Edition (first published 1977)
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Lysergius
Anyone who examines the Zen arts is immediately struck by how modern they seem. The ceramics of 16th-century Zen artists could be interchanged with the rugged pots of our own contemporary crafts movement; ancient calligraphies suggest the monochromes of Franz Kline or Willem de Kooning; the apparent nonsense and illogic of Zen parables (and No theater and Haiku poetry) established the limitations of language long before the theater of the absurd; 400-year-old Zen architecture seems to be a copy ...more
Mad
A comprehensive and accessible read on what I find to be a thoroughly intriguing subject. This book examines the way that Zen found a fertile home in the mind and hearts of the Japanese people. And how those very same people helped to bring new form and thought to the religion itself.

I found it to be a fascinating read, which was hard to pull away from until the very last page. The chapter on the tea ceremony was a personal favorite.

Though no one book could truly cover every facet of this subjec
...more
Mazen Loujami
Very interesting book about the influence of Zen on Japanese art and culture, giving also a good idea about Buddhism zen in general.
I recommend it especially for those interested in art, architecture and zen.
Mark
I enjoyed this book, it's a good overview of the philosophy of zen and its impact on various art forms including pottery, gardening, plus archery, etc.
David Glass
Highly enjoyable but prone to some oversimplification
Lawrence
Feb 23, 2014 Lawrence marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
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Duncan
A fascinating introduction to how Zen ideas influenced Japanese culture over the centuries. The book is accessible, broad in scope, and demonstrates genuine respect and understanding of the topics being discussed. Having lived in Japan and been fascinated by aspects of the culture like ceramics and the tea ceremony for a number of years, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.
Sanntint
THIS IS A VERY INFORMATIVE AND SKILLFUL WRITTEN BOOKS ABOUT ZEN CULTURE AND AFTER READING IT , I FEEL MORE INFORMED ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN JAPANESE AND THEIR CULTURE !
Shmendrick
An intriguing and comprehensive introduction to how the Zen philosophy has influenced and shaped Japanese culture through exploring different aspects of the culture.
Emma Dupont
Thomas Hoover takes a comprehensive look at how Zen philosophy has created the modern Japan we see today. Not a bad book, but at times rather dull.
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Thomas Hoover has a doctorate in oceanography and served as senior vice president of an architect-engineering firm in New York, where he has lived for several decades. His vices include being an avid sailor and a recognized collector of the classical music of India. He began his writing career with two classic non-fiction books on Far Eastern art and religion and then moved into fiction writing wi ...more
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“According to Ch'an (and Zen), understanding comes only by ignoring the intellect and heeding the instincts, the intuition.” 0 likes
“It is easier to be tranquil about existence when you recognize the pointlessness of solemnity.” 0 likes
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