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On Zen Practice: Body, Breath, and Mind

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This updated landmark volume makes available for the first time in decades the teachings that were formative to a whole generation of American Zen teachers and students. Conceived as an overarching primer on the practice of Zen, chapters in this volume address every aspect of beginning practice, shikantaza, chanting, sesshin, working with Mu, and the nature of koans.

In the intervening years since the publication of the earlier edition, countless books have appeared on Zen. Few, if any, have approached the strengths of On Zen Practice as a reference or teaching tool, and the book retains a lively, immediate quality that will appeal to today's readers.

208 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1975

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Taizan Maezumi

13 books4 followers

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 8 of 8 reviews
Profile Image for Gabrielle.
996 reviews1,130 followers
March 29, 2018
This book is a collection of essays and teachings about various aspect of Zen practice; I found it to be the closest I have read so far to a handbook on Zen. The book explores the motivations behind practice, the physical techniques (proper posture, breathing and bowing, etc.), retreats, as well as koans and sutras.

The authors of the various essays all write in a very inspiring, easy to grasp and encouraging tone: the importance and simplicity of Zen is explained with equal measures of wisdom and practicality. I found the section on koans particularly interesting, as that's an aspect of Zen practice I am inexperienced with and very curious about.

This is a wonderful book for serious students of Zen.
July 22, 2018
Excellent manual, with one of the best explanations I have seen of the most important Zen concepts. I would say it is the perfect complement to the also excellent "The Three Pillars of Zen".

If I had to recommend two books on Zen Buddhism, these two would be, with "The Three Pillars of Zen" for beginners, and "On Zen Practice" for the more advanced disciple.
Profile Image for John Richards.
16 reviews1 follower
May 6, 2020
I had let my Zen practice lapse, and wanted a refresher to start my practice up again during the Covid 19 Pandemic. This book was awesome! I enjoyed reading Rossi Bernie Tetsugen Glassman and Roshi Taizan Maezumi's words on Zen practice to get me going again.
Profile Image for Bill.
53 reviews
July 24, 2019
A wonderful little book which I have read through twice and go back to specific pages more than that. "Not knowing is the most intimate." Keishin
Profile Image for Todd.
165 reviews8 followers
September 8, 2015
When I first learned that this book was being used for our fall ango, I thought it might be a bit basic, but it was so incredibly nourishing. It touches on so many points: zazen, sesshin, bowing, koans, and more. It's well worth the read. Since it is a collection of essays, it does have some redundancy, but it is bearable.
Profile Image for Steve.
721 reviews12 followers
June 13, 2021
Hardcore. Everything you wanted to know about Zen, but were afraid to ask. Perhaps more for the serious practitioner than the beginner (if you haven't read Shunryu Suzuki, I'd head there first).
Displaying 1 - 8 of 8 reviews

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