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Classics of Buddhism and Zen, Volume 4: The Collected Translations of Thomas Cleary Paperback – April 12, 2005

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Product Details

  • Series: Classics of Buddhism and Zen (Book 4)
  • Paperback: 912 pages
  • Publisher: Shambhala (April 12, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590302214
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590302217
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #704,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


Thomas Cleary is the preeminent translator of classic Eastern texts, including The Essential Tao, The Essential Confucius, The Secret of the Golden Flower, and the bestselling The Art of War.

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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Gary Fuhrman on May 5, 2005
Format: Paperback
I pre-ordered this mainly for its translation of the Shobogenzo-zuimonki (Record of Things Heard), Dogen's early dharma talks as recorded by his disciple Ejo. There are few (if any) other English translations in print, and this one by Cleary is included on recommended-reading lists by Dogen scholars such as Hee-jin Kim, Kazuaki Tanahashi and Taigen Dan Leighton. Some feel that the sheer quantity of Cleary's translation work raises questions about its quality, but reading several of Cleary's books (including "Rational Zen") has dispelled any doubts i had about their value for the serious student. This particular volume from the Shambhala series of his "Collected Translations" should be of particular interest for readers of Dogen. Besides the Record of Things Heard (135 pages), it contains:
Transmission of Light (Denkoroku), attributed to Zen Master Keizan, a fourth-generation follower of Dogen (225 pages). "Ostensibly a collection of stories about 53 Buddhist illuminates from India, Chania and Japan, in reality it is a book of instruction in the art of satori" -- from Cleary's introduction, which focusses mainly on Dogen.
Unlocking the Zen Koan, a translation of the Wumenguan (aka Mumonkan), a classic collection of commentary on Chinese Zen koans (180 pages).
The Original Face, An Anthology of Rinzai Zen (90 pages).
Timeless Spring, an anthology of Chan-Zen writings and records drawn from several classic sources (100 pages).
Zen Antics, 100 Stories of Enlightenment (80 pages).
Sleepless Nights, a selection of poems by Wen-hsiang, a Chinese Buddhist contemporary with Dogen (50 pages).
This adds up to 900 pages of classic (and some unfamiliar) Zen texts rendered into Cleary's uncluttered and straighforward English.
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Format: Paperback
Essential translations of the classic texts of Buddhism and Zen!

All Five Volumes of Classics of Buddhism and Zen contain the translations of some of the most essential literature of Buddhism and Zen. As the Collected Works of Thomas Cleary, these translations span his remarkably prolific career. Finally, they have become available in this beautiful, accessible five-volume set.

This five-volume set includes nearly all of Thomas Cleary's translations (some have even been slightly revised and updated). They also include all the supplemental material included in the original individual translations, ie. glossaries, notes, indexes, Introductions, and Cleary's own insightful commentaries.

Only a handful of Thomas Cleary's Buddhist and Zen translations are not included in this set, primarily because their own bulk would necessarily constitute a volume unto themselves-these include, The Blue Cliff Record (trans. with J.C. Cleary), The Book of Serenity, and The Avatamsaka Sutra.

All five volumes are formatted for ease of access and reading. The set, or the individual volumes are a perfect gift for anyone with an interest in Zen or Buddhism, Eastern Religion or Eastern Philosophy. The Hardcovers are sturdy and finely bound, the Trade Paper are also made to last.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Reader on January 25, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Cleary's translations are superb. This book is a great value with beautiful and durable binding. It was quickly and carefully shipped.
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By dak on October 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
As all my reviews are short,so to will this one be.doing a look inside this book will reveal which classics are translated and you can even do some reading of the book.I only want to state that i have read most of cleary's books and as compared to other renditions or translations of similar texts i find cleary's to be accurate,well written, and easy to read . i like clearys books and style of writing,just enough commentary to enhance understanding without trying to impose his rendition of the meaning...
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