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Thread: BOOK LIST - INPUT

  1. #1

    BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Hi All,

    I have been working for awhile, trying to put together a "Recommended Book List" (while trying to re-read as many of the titles as possible). I have not gotten as far in that as I would like, but here is the list so far. If anyone has any particular input, please drop me an email or post a message here ...

    If you have any suggestions, write me. I won't put anything on the list until I have read it however.

    Books marked with ** are suggested for beginners and experienced folks alike.

    TREELEAF READING LIST

    1- Opening the Hand of Thought by Kosho Uchiyama Roshi (2004 Edition) **
    2- From The Zen Kitchen To Enlightenment: Refining Your Life by Eihei Dogen; Kosho Uchiyama Roshi (Translator) **

    and

    Nothing Is Hidden : Essays on Zen Master Dogen's Instructions for the Cook by Shohaku Okumura Roshi **

    3- A Heart To Heart Chat On Buddhism With Old Master Gudo by Gudo Wafu Nishijima Roshi (Jundo Cohen, Translator) **
    4- The Wholehearted Way, A Commentary on Dogen’s Bendowa by Kosho Uchiyama Roshi **
    5- What the Buddha Taught: Revised and Expanded Edition by Walpola Rahula **
    6- Buddhism Plain and Simple by Steve Hagen **
    7- Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi **

    and

    Not Always So: Practicing the True Spirit of Zen by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi **

    and

    Branching Streams Flow in the Darkness: Talks on Sandokai by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

    8- The Heart Sutra by Red Pine (Bill Porter)

    and

    Heart of Understanding: Commentaries on Heart Sutra by Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

    9- Sit Down and Shut Up by Brad Warner **
    10- Everyday Zen: Love & Work by Charlotte Joko Beck **

    and

    Nothing Special: Living Zen by Charlotte Joko Beck **

    11- Enlightenment Unfolds (the essential teachings of Dogen) by Kazuaki Tanahashi **

    and

    Moon in a Dewdrop: Writings of Zen Master Dogen by Kazuaki Tanahashi **

    12- Zen Buddhism, Volume 1: A History, India & China by Heinrich Dumoulin

    and

    Zen Buddhism, Volume 2: A History (Japan) by Heinrich Dumoulin

    13- Master Dogen's Shobogenzo-Zuimonki available online: **
    http://global.sotozen-net.or.jp/eng/index.html#

    14- KOAN COLLECTIONS:
    Gateless Barrier: Zen Comments on the Mumonkan by Zenkai Shibayama
    and/or
    Book of Serenity: One Hundred Zen Dialogues by Thomas Cleary
    and/or
    Master Dogen's Shinji Shobogenzo (Koan Collection) by Gudo Nishijima Roshi

    15- The Mind of Clover: Essays in Zen Buddhist Ethics by Robert Aitken
    16- No Death, No Fear by Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh
    17- The Platform Sutra: The Zen Teaching of Hui-Neng translated Red Pine (Bill Porter)

  2. #2

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Hi Jundo,

    Most of my Dharma books are in German (and unfortunately quite a few good ones aren't available in English), but here are a few further possibilities for consideration:

    - To Meet the Real Dragon, Nishijima Roshi
    - Shobogenzo, Nishijima Roshi
    - Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community (Eihei Shingi), Leighton/Okumura
    - Dogen's Extensive Record (Eihei Koroku), Leighton/Okumura
    - The Record of Transmitting the Light (Keizan Zenji's Denkoroku), F. Cook
    - The Zen Teachings of Bodhidharma, Red Pine
    - The Diamond Sutra, Thich Nhat Hanh
    - Asking about Zen: 108 Answers, Jiho Sargent
    - Zen at War, Brian Victoria

    Gassho
    Ken

  3. #3

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT


  4. #4

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Thank you for the link to Shobogenzo-Zuimonki.

    G,W

  5. #5

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    I'd like to add Buddhism Is Not What You Think by Steve Hagen for consideration.

    Most of the others I would recommend are already here.

    Bill

  6. #6

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Jundo;

    Here is my list of recommended readings (not including suttas) from my bookshelf and not in any particular order:

    A Flower Does Not Talk: Zen Essays by Abbot Zenkei Shibayama
    Note: This collection includes wonderful essays on the Six (not 10!) Oxherding pictures.

    Minding Mind: A Course in Basic Mediation translated by Thomas Cleary
    Note: Though the title states “Basic”, this collection of essays about meditation is not for beginners!

    The Heart of Understanding by Thich Nhat Hanh
    Note: This is a simple and beautiful commentary on the Heart Sutra.

    Bankei Zen: Translations from The Record of Bankei translated by Peter Haskel
    Note: This is a collection from a marvelous Zen teacher who is often overlooked.

    The Zen Teaching of Huang Po translated by John Blofeld
    Note: I have read this book many times over 40 years and still find inspiration.

    Mind-Seal of the Buddhas by Patriarch Ou-I translated by J.C. Cleary
    Note: This is a wonderful introduction to the Pure Land tradition, but a Zen practitioner should feel at home.

    The Sutra of Hui-Neng, Grand Master of Zen With Hui-neng’s Commentary on the Diamond Sutra translated by Thomas Cleary
    Note: I would think this is a ‘must read’ for any Zen practitioner.

    Lighting the Way by the Dalai Lama
    Note: This is obviously from the Tibetan tradition, but is a clear exposition of Mahayana Buddhism.

    and

    Buddhism Without Beliefs by Stephen Batchelor
    Note: After hearing about this ‘infamous’ book and reading a very thoughtful critique by Urgyen Sangharakshita I decided to read the book. I am currently three-quarters through and have been very impressed and inspired by what I have read.

    clyde

  7. #7

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Hello!

    Here's one of my recent favourites:

    Eihei Dogen: Mystical Realist, Revised, Third Edition (Paperback)
    by Hee-Jin Kim (Author)


    Gassho,

    Hans

  8. #8

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Not a recommendation, but more of a query.

    "The New Social Face of Buddhism: A Call to Action" - Ken Jones

    Worth buying or skip? :?:

  9. #9

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    This is the first book I read about Soto Zen.

    "The Essence of Zen" - by Sekkei Harada.

  10. #10

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Thank you Crankenfurter.... It's really help me....

    Gassho, Shui Di

  11. #11

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Hi,

    I wanted to thank everyone who suggested additional books for the 'Reading List'. I will take some suggestions, and try to get to several books that I have not seen yet or not read for a long while. I will also have an additional reading list for our "Jukai" in the near future, which will consist of a few books on the Precepts and ethics (and other readings that I will supply).

    Let me just comment on a few of the suggestions made in this thread ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenneth
    Hi Jundo,

    Most of my Dharma books are in German (and unfortunately quite a few good ones aren't available in English), but here are a few further possibilities for consideration:

    - To Meet the Real Dragon, Nishijima Roshi
    - Shobogenzo, Nishijima Roshi
    - Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community (Eihei Shingi), Leighton/Okumura
    - Dogen's Extensive Record (Eihei Koroku), Leighton/Okumura
    - The Record of Transmitting the Light (Keizan Zenji's Denkoroku), F. Cook
    - The Zen Teachings of Bodhidharma, Red Pine
    - The Diamond Sutra, Thich Nhat Hanh
    - Asking about Zen: 108 Answers, Jiho Sargent
    - Zen at War, Brian Victoria
    All excellent suggestions. I will add all of these. I consider Jiho Sargent to be one of my teachers, and an old friend of many years. Her book is an unusual, "nuts & bolts" manual to Zen Practice as it is actually conducted in Japan. She also knocks down many of the false stereotypes and common misunderstandings about Zen Practice.

    Victoria's "Zen at War" is necessary to read, although I have now come to believe that it overstates its case.

    The Leighton translations are excellent and necessary for the "Complete Dogen Library", although a bit expensive. I would list them as suggested reading only for those looking to delve deeply into Dogen beyond the basics. That is also my reason for not suggesting that people read Shobogenzo cover-to-cover unless they are making a special study of the contents. In other words, good for long time practitioners delving deep into the literature, but not suggested as an early read for newcomers. For them, I suggest the Tanahashi abbreviated versions of Shobogenzo and the like.

    I did not include "To Meet the Real Dragon" as the book I translated, "Heart-to-Heart", covers much of the same material and, I feel, in a somewhat more lucid fashion. However, of course, I recommend both to anyone interested in the thinking of Nishijima Roshi. I think I will add it to the list though.

    Plankton, our Leon loves the Hungry Caterpillar. Next bedtime, I will re-read it with a Zen eye.

    Bill, I am a Steve Hagen fan. I have ordered Buddhism Is Not What You Think (I believe I read it long ago), and will likely add that to the list.

    Harry, The Zen Teaching of "Homeless" Kodo by Kosho Uchiyama Roshi is a wonderful suggestion. Yes, of course.

    I will look for and read One Robe One Bowl by Ryokan.

    Clyde, many great suggestions. I will work down the list as soon as I can (many of those I read years ago). I am a fan of Steven Bachelor and did think of adding one or two of his books. I will consider that.

    Hans, Eihei Dogen: Mystical Realist is a favorite of mine (although a deep read). Recommended for those making advanced study of Dogen-think.

    Erik, I am ordering "The New Social Face of Buddhism: A Call to Action" by Ken Jones. I am now in the middle of reading "The New Buddhism" by David Brazier. Depending on how the rest goes, I am thinking of adding it to the list (and I will be using sections for some "Sit-a-Long" talks next week). The fellow basically is calling for a political/social revolution based on Buddhism. Interesting read.

    http://www.amazon.com/New-Buddhism-Davi ... 782&sr=8-1

    Shui Di, thank you for the "The Essence of Zen" by Sekkei Harada. I will read it. I have sat at some retreats with the translator, Rev. Daigaku Rumme, and I am very impressed with him and his teacher.

    Crankenfurter, thank you for reminding us about ...

    shastaabbey.org/shobogenzo1.htm

    I have mentioned elsewhere that the translation is a bit flowery and worshipful in tone for my taste, but it is a masterful translation. I am a believer in reading several different versions of Dogen's words and 'triangulating' the real intent behind them.

    Anyway, thank you again, and keep the suggestions coming.

    Gassho, Jundo

  12. #12

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    :wink:

  13. #13

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Steve Hagen's 'Meditation Now or Never' is the best plain and straightforward book on meditation I have read. Good for beginner's too - he doesn't introduce terms like zazen and shikantaza until near the end of the book.

    Gassho,
    John

  14. #14
    Senior Member kirkmc's Avatar
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    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    I want to second the recommendation for Batchelor's Buddhism Without Beliefs. It is perhaps the most important book on Buddhism I have read - and I have read way too many - because it strips away the mumbo-jumbo of various traditions, much as Jundo sensei does.

    Kirk

  15. #15

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    I personally like (other than some books already mentioned hakuins books "hakuins commentary... http://www.amazon.com/Zen-Words-Heart-H ... 582&sr=8-3

    and maybe
    essential teachings...
    http://www.amazon.com/Essential-Teachin ... 582&sr=8-1

    But more the first one even though it should be more on the advanced list...

    And not to forget
    Pankaj mishras The buddha in the world.
    http://www.amazon.com/End-Suffering-Bud ... 838&sr=1-2
    And that one i can really recommend.

    May the force be with you
    Tb

  16. #16
    Senior Member kirkmc's Avatar
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    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Maybe you should add Austin's Zen and the Brain. While not a core book, it is quite unique, and offers insights into meditation that no other book does.

    Kirk

  17. #17
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    I agree with Kirk's remarks re: James Austin's book Zen and the Brain. The way I have found most useful to read it, given the breadth of subject matter and length of the book, is to choose a topic from the table of contents and go from there. While this is not a linear approach, I think it much more likely that one would lose interest in the book if the chapters were read sequentially.

    I noticed Red Pine's (Bill Porter) Platform Sutra on the reading list. I like Red Pine's work a lot - given the importance of Huineng (his legend), and the Platform Sutra to Chan Buddhism, I would suggest Philip Yampolsky's translation of and commentary on the Platform Sutra. Yampolsky and Dumoulin explain a lot of the historical context and "hagiography" surrounding Huineng and the sutra. This is important because it deemphasizes the individual and causes us to make the teachings our own - it removes them from a place in history ( an arbitrary and human creation ) and makes them contemporaneous and unique to ourselves.

    Alex

  18. #18

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    Quote Originally Posted by kirkmc
    I want to second the recommendation for Batchelor's Buddhism Without Beliefs. It is perhaps the most important book on Buddhism I have read - and I have read way too many - because it strips away the mumbo-jumbo of various traditions, much as Jundo sensei does.

    Kirk
    I'll join this one. You don't need to agree with Batchelor all te time, but he makes compelling observations that helped me peel this orange a little bit better. Another great one is " Ending the pursuit of happiness" by Barry Magid, from Joko Beck's lineage; I feel this book will really be a landmark in the "westernization" process of zen. I ignored all the Psychoterapy babble of the book (in the same way I ignore all the sympathetic / parasympathetic theories of N. Roshi) and encountered very interesting stuff that demystifies futher zazen, zen masters, etc. He has an interesting vantage point frome which he describes how we approach the practice with all sorts of therapeutic fantasies, secret hopes, etc. Anyways, I'm not good at recommending books but this one really brings something fresh to the table.

    Gassho, A

  19. #19

    Re: BOOK LIST - INPUT

    For what it is worth, I'd like to second the choice of 'The Zen Teachings of Huang Po'. I too re-read this one again and again. The same for Bankei Zen'. Another Chinese master (Rinzai) I found really practical and clear would be 'Swampland Flowers - Letters and Lectures of Zen Master TaHui. Others would be 'Zen Training' by Katsuki Sekida and the smaller version as 'A Guide to Zen' (same author). I have really appreciated Albert Low's' Creating Consciousnes' (fairly intellectual and a bit slow but very rewarding over time) and also Low's 'Zen Meditation, Plain and Simple'. Also heartily recommend Thich Nhat Hanh's 'The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching and 'Opening the Heart of the Cosmos' for a beautiful look into the Lotus Sutra that I can actually understand!

    Also I would recommend a Tibetan Nyingma (Dzogchen) tradition book originally set down by Padmasambhava titled ' Self Liberation Through Seeing With Naked Awareness'. The title pretty much says it all. It might not make the 'recommended' list, but I found it worth my time as a beginner some years ago.

    Thanks,
    kshetra

    Edited: This is likely way off base, because it might be a "niche" book but I found the book At Hells Gate by Claude Anshin Thomas to be personally deeply helpful. I could relate to him on a number of levels. If you don't know, he was a Vietnam war vet who went down that slippery slope of nihilism, depression and addiction to finally find the Dharma via Thich Nhat Hanh. (I had actually put off reading it for many years for a number of reasons) but at the time I was reading it I came across one paragraph that helped me to just sit down at that very moment and say to myself that "well, this is what my life is and I surrender to it" . So thank you Anshin Thomas.

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