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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Jesus teaches Zen
This very small book lists verses of the gospel of Thomas on each page and then gives the authors comments about what he believes they mean. The authors opinion is that in the gospel of Thomas Jesus is teaching nonduality and how to discover the true Self and over come the illusion of separation and individual ego by living truly in the eternal Now.I agree with the...
Published on September 16, 2006 by Steve Burns

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, yet problematic
The translation provided in the text was clear for the most part, but the author does not say whose translation he employs, or whether he translated the text himself. His commentary for each of the logia (sayings) is sometimes superficial and repetitive, while at other times being on-the-mark. He interprets the text according to his personal spiritual views of Advaita...
Published on January 17, 2012 by Zeno


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Jesus teaches Zen, September 16, 2006
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This review is from: Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ (Paperback)
This very small book lists verses of the gospel of Thomas on each page and then gives the authors comments about what he believes they mean. The authors opinion is that in the gospel of Thomas Jesus is teaching nonduality and how to discover the true Self and over come the illusion of separation and individual ego by living truly in the eternal Now.I agree with the authors opinion completely and believe this book is closer to the true esoteric teachings of Jesus than the Bible. This is a perfect book for beginners that are searching for truth or studing Zen.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A non-dual interpretation of The Gospel of Thomas, February 19, 2009
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This review is from: Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ (Paperback)
In this book, Robert Powell interprets the Gospel of Thomas from a non-dual perspective. What I mean is, he interprets Jesus as an enlightened teacher who is simply pointing to the kingdom of heaven all around you, the oneness of everything. Jesus is saying you are not separate from God, and never were. You need only to drop all religious concepts and see. This is what esoteric Christianity is all about. There are other books about this. 'Inner Christianity' by Richard Smoley is also very good.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, yet problematic, January 17, 2012
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Zeno (Maryland, USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ (Paperback)
The translation provided in the text was clear for the most part, but the author does not say whose translation he employs, or whether he translated the text himself. His commentary for each of the logia (sayings) is sometimes superficial and repetitive, while at other times being on-the-mark. He interprets the text according to his personal spiritual views of Advaita (non-dualism) rather than approaching the text on its own terms or in the context of ancient Jewish wisdom literature. Powell also excludes about a dozen of the sayings from the Gospel of Thomas on the grounds that some of the sayings are either too obscure or out of place. However, having read the Gospel in its entirety, I felt that he should have included some of the sayings that he left out, such as the parable of the leaven to describe the Kingdom of God.

The Gospel itself sometimes feels too obscure compared to mystical texts of other traditions such as the Upanishads, Tao Te Ching, or the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius. It should be read in conjunction with other such texts in order to be better understood.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Christian Zen Informs the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, September 11, 2011
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Erik Weaver (Springfield, MO USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ (Paperback)
This is a just little booklet but its value is deeper than its length. It contains most of the text of the gnostic Gospel of Thomas, which is perhaps the earliest surviving Christian text. It is thought to have been written on the order of 20-years after the death of Jesus, about the same time as the lost "Q" source material; predating the New Testament Gospels. However, other scholars date it as late as 140 years after the death of Jesus. In any event, it is contemporary with the four gospels found in the New Testament, which are generally accepted as being written between 50 and 130 after the death of Jesus. There is a distinctly "Zen-ish" or "Buddhist" flavor to these sayings, all of which are attributed to Jesus. I found the author's commentary on these to be concise and thoughtful, as well as thought-provoking. And isn't this the point?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Increase your understanding of the Bible., August 13, 2014
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This review is from: Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ (Paperback)
Clearly puts the teachings of Jesus into a perspective that can be absorbed , understood and personalized. Great for those of us who have wondered how Zen philosophy fits with the word of Jesus.
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Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ
Christian Zen: The Essential Teachings of Jesus Christ by Robert Powell (Paperback - November 4, 2003)
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