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  The master Bankei's talks were attended not only by Zen students but by persons of all ranks and sects. He never quoted sutras not indulged in scholastic dissertations. Instead, his words were spoken directly from his heart to the hearts of... continue...

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  STORIES, BOOKS & MEDIA
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The majority of the following books are from the library of Chon Tri. Many of the summaries and in his own words. If you wish to purchase the book, click on the cover image and you will be linked to Amazon.com.
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» Recommend a Book
buy this book THE GATELESS BARRIER: THE WU-MEN KUAN (MUMONKAN)
by Ch'an master Wumen; Robert Aitken (translator)
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (ISBN #: 0865474427, Paperback, 332 pp, January 1991)
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Summary
From the Publisher
Translated by Robert Aitken The Gateless Barrier is generally acknowledged to be the fundamental koan collection in the literature of Zen. Gathered together by Wu-men (Mumon), a thirteenth-century master of the Lin-chi (Rinzai) school, it is composed of forty-eight koans, or cases, each accompanied by a brief comment and poem by Wu-men. Robert Aitken, one of the premier American Zen masters, has translated Wu-men's text, supplementing the original with his own commentary -- the first such commentary by a Western master -- making the profound truths of Zen Buddhism accessible to serious contemporary students and relevant to current social concerns.

buy this book 1. BLUE CLIFF RECORD
by Ch'an master Yuan-wu; Thomas Cleary (translator)
Publisher: Shambhala (ISBN #: 0877736227, Hardcover, 682pp, March 1992)
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Summary
A collection of 100 koans with commentary & verse by Yuan-wu, one of the Chinese great Ch'an master, of Lin-chi School. It was considered as one of the best in classic Ch'an literature of all time. However, it was burned by Ta-hui, his Dharma heir, to awaken the Ch'an students who lost themselves in its beautiful words at his time.

Translated from Chinese by Thomas Cleary

buy this book 2. BOOK OF SERENITY: ONE HUNDRED ZEN DIALOGUES
by Ch'an master Hsing-Hsiu; Thomas Cleary (translator)
Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc (ISBN #: 1570623813, Hardcover, 463pp, April 1998)
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Summary
A collection of 100 Zen koans with commentary & verse by Ch'an master Hsing-Hsiu, of the Ts'ao-tung School in China.

Translated from Chinese by Thomas Cleary

buy this book 3. GATELESS BARRIER : ZEN COMMENTS ON THE MUMONKAN
by Zen master Zenkei Shibayama; Sumiko Kudo (translator)
Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc. (ISBN #: 1570627266, Paperback, 384 pp, May 2000)
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Summary
Commentary & explanation on Wumenguan by a mordern Zen teacher Zenkei Shibayama.

Translated from Japanese by Sumiko Kudo

buy this book 4. IRON FLUTE
by Zen masters Genro, Fugai & Nyogen Senzaki
Publisher: Tuttle Publishing (ISBN #: 080483248X, Paperback, 168pp, January 2000)
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Summary
100 Zen Koans with commentary by Genro, Fugai, and Nyogen. Translated & edited by Nyogen Senzaki & Ruth Trout McCandless.

buy this book 5. RECORD OF TRANSMITTING THE LIGHT: ZEN MASTER KEIZAN'S DENKOROKU
by Zen master Keizan; Francis Harold Cook (translator)
Publisher: Center Publications (ISBN #: 0916820203, Paperback, 281 pp, February 1991)
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Summary
The Record of Transmitting the Light traces the inheritance of the Buddha's enlightenment through successive Buddhist masters. Written by a seminal figure in the Japanese Zen tradition, its significance as an historical and religious document is unquestionable. And ultimately, The Record of Transmitting the Light serves as a testament to our own capacity to awaken to a life of freedom, wisdom, and compassion.

buy this book 6. SECRETS OF THE BLUE CLIFF RECORD
by Zen master Hakuin & Zen master Tenkei; Thomas Cleary (translator)
Publisher: Random House, Inc. (ISBN #: 157062738X, Hardcover, 320pp, February 2001)
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Summary
A collection of 100 Zen koans with commentary & verse by Hakuin, a great Zen master of the Japanese Rinzai Zen school and Tenkei, an excellent Zen master of Japanese Soto Zen school.

Translated from Japanese by Thomas Cleary

buy this book 7. STRAIGHT TO THE HEART OF ZEN: ELEVEN CLASSIC KOANS AND THEIR INNER MEANINGS
by Philip Kapleau
Publisher: Random House, Inc. (ISBN #: 157062593X, Paperback, 176 pp, July 2001)
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Summary
One of the greatest aids to spiritual advancement was invented in China over a thousand years ago. We know it by its Japanese name, the koan, which Zen master Philip Kapleau describes as a direct and profound presentation of the truth. Koans, by design, are difficult to understand but can afford giant leaps toward enlightenment. As such, they are best taken one at a time and in limited quantity, which is how Kapleau presents them in Straight to the Heart of Zen. Each of the 11 chapters concerns a single koan. We learn about the background of the characters in the koan, and why they speak and respond the way they do. We also learn other relevant details that are sorely lacking in the original, pithy accounts but that were assumed to be common knowledge by the original authors. Although koans are traditionally used by monks, Kapleau selects his for lay practitioners. In addition to offering historical background, Kapleau draws on his own spiritual insight to help the reader penetrate the koan, which makes Straight to the Heart of Zen a clear choice for advanced students. --Brian Bruya -- (Amazon.com)

buy this book 9. TRANSMISSION OF LIGHT
by Zen master Keizan; Thomas Cleary (translator)
Publisher: North Point Press (ISBN #: 0865474338, Paperback, 234pp, May 1990)
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Summary
A collection of 53 koans with commentary and verse by Japanese Soto Zen master Keizan, the lineage of Dogen Zen master.

Translated from Japanese by Thomas Cleary

buy this book 10. TWO ARROWS MEETING IN MID-AIR: THE ZEN KOAN
by John Daido Daido Loori, et al
Publisher: Charles E. Tuttle Co., Inc. (ISBN #: 0804830126, Paperback, 392 pp, April 1994)
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Summary
From the Publisher
Through a comprehensive introduction and twenty-one chapters centered on koans from classic collections, western literary sources, and modern encounters, this book explains the relevance of koan study to Zen training today. It illuminates the value of koans in the practice of self-realization and their aliveness within the teacher-student relationship. This collection will prove an invaluable reference on koan study for those pursuing a greater understanding of Zen Buddhism

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