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The Complete Book of Zen Paperback – August 1, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage/Ebury (a Division of Random; New Ed edition (August 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091876559
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091876555
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,065,747 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Wong Kiew Kit has practised and taught Shaolin arts and meditation for more than 30 years and has over 2,000 students. He is the fourth generation successor of Monk Jiang Nan of the Shaolin Monastery and Grandmaster of Shaolin Wahnam Kung Fu and Chi Kung Institute. He is the author of several books on oriental wisdom.

More About the Author

Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit is the 4th generation successor from the Shaolin Monastery of China. He is a grandmaster of Shaolin Kungfu and Chi Kung. He received the "Qigong Master of the Year" award at the Second World Congress on Qigong held in San Francisco in November, 1997. He also holds an honors degree in humanities, and is one of the very few masters who speaks excellent English.

Grandmaster Wong, born in 1944, started his life-long training of the Shaolin arts in 1954 when he began learning Shaolin Kungfu from the famous Shaolin master, Grandmaster Lai Chin Wah, who was popularly known as Uncle Righteousness. Grandmaster Wong became his best disciple.

To further his kungfu training, Grandmaster Wong later learnt from Grandmaster Ho Fatt Nam, the third generation successor directly descended from the southern Shaolin Monastery when it was burned by the Manchurian army in China.

Sifu Wong also learned Wuzu Kungfu from Grandmaster Chee Kim Thong, and Wing Choon Kungfu from Grandmaster Choe Hoong Choy, who were patriarchs of their respective kungfu styles.

Grandmaster Wong has taught kungfu and chi kung for more than twenty five years, to more than twenty organizations. Regretting that many masters were withholding "secrets" of kungfu and chi kung with the result that these arts might lose their essence, in 1982 he founded the Shaolin Wahnam Institute of kungfu and chi kung, naming the school after the two teachers who had influenced him most, Grandmaster Lai Chin Wah and Grandmaster Ho Fatt Nam, with the aim of transmitting genuine Shaolin Kungfu, Shaolin Chi Kung and Shaolin philosophy.

Having won championships himself, Sifu Wong has trained champions in kungfu (demonstrations as well as all styles sparring) and lion dance competitions. But he has always insisted that while Shaolin Kungfu is an exceedingly effective martial art, its greatness lies in enriching our daily life and in spiritual development.

Since 1987 Grandmaster Wong has spent more time teaching chi kung than kungfu, because he believes that while kungfu serves as a fascinating hobby, chi kung serves an urgent public need, particularly in overcoming degenerative and chronic illness. Grandmaster Wong is one of the few masters who have generously introduced the once secretive Shaolin Chi Kung to the public, and has helped literally hundreds of people to be relieved of their so-called "incurable" diseases like hypertension, asthma, rheumatism, arthritis, diabetics, migraine, gastritis, gall stones, kidney failure, depression, anxiety and even cancer.

Now he has devoted more time on writing and teaching overseas, having successfully taught in Europe, the United States, Canada and Australia. He stresses the Shaolin philosophy of sharing goodness with all humanity, and is now dedicated to spreading the wonders and benefits of the Shaolin arts to more people irrespective of race, culture and religion.

www.shaolin.org

Customer Reviews

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I found it surprisingly easy to read and navigate.
TheBigOak
This book is definitely a must read for any persons that are curious about Zen, or for those serious about starting their Zen lifestyle.
Justin Schultz
This book is one of the most indepth books in the philosophies and religion of Zen Buddhism.
J.A. Michaels - Spiritualist | Philosopher | Martial Artist | Author

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 23, 1998
Format: Paperback
I found this book to be an extremely indepth reference of Zen Buddhism. In comparison to others that I have read I found this to be very easy to understand, and with such a subject as Zen that is not an easy task. As simple as it is, with its all of its vast information and insight, one could read this book 100 times and get something new from it each time. I would definately recommend this book to anyone, from someone with a new curiosity about Zen, to a master seeking new insight and enlightenment.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 3, 2002
Format: Paperback
I've read the Hebrew translation, and it was absolutley splendid. After several vague books of Zen and Budhism, it was throughly eye-opening to follow Master WWK, as he leads readers through the basics of both, carefully detailing Zen from basic principles to more elaborate questions, and never leaving your hand.
You know those rare thrills you get out of learning something that really means something? This is it. If you want to understand Zen, that's the one book you should begin with.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
I have read numerous books on Zen, and this is definately the best. In this book, Shaolin Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit gives insight into every aspect of Zen history, philosophy and practice, as well as a clear explaination of Buddhism itself. I had been considering Zen Buddhism as my own religion for awhile, and after gaining a thourough understanding from this book, I have decided that, yes, I am a Zen Buddhist!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Siddhartha P. Jayanthi on April 14, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Zen Buddhism has its home in the Shaolin temple in China, which is also known for its gongfu. The samurai in Japan also were ardent practioners of Zen to improve their swordsmanship. These phenomena has baffled scholars for many years: for arts that practice fighting, why practice a "peaceful" religion/spiritual philosophy? This book has the answer. It explains the concrete connection between Zen and gongfu.

On the whole its an enjoyable book. Master Wong uses various sutras and koans to explain different types of meditations, Zen or otherwise, while also givine a good comparison as between other forms of Buddhism as well as tracing its roots from India to China to Japan. On the whole, for those who want to have a well rounded regimen in training for both mind and body, this is a great book to start. This book gives a good introduction to qigong and gongfu as well as best ways to prepare for meditation.

I only give 4 stars for a couple of reasons. Master Wong does tend to repeat himself in this book. Also in writing about martial arts in general, he seemed to lack humility about the subject. Yes, I also agree gongfu is good, but I also think using other forms of martial arts, like karate and taekwondo, can also be suited for Zen study; as that is how I'm doing this training.

Either way, it's a good book to check out. If doesn't want to be too bogged down in mere intellectual studies of sutras, this helps one in getting to the core of what Zen is really about.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Justin Schultz on April 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
This book offers an exceptional introduction and orientation to Zen as a lifestyle. The author takes the reader through the very basic fundamentals and uses easy to understand explanations that keep even those readers that are completely new to Zen enthralled. The book introduces many ideologies and thoughts that are enlightening in themselves, and reflect well on the subject matter. This book is definitely a must read for any persons that are curious about Zen, or for those serious about starting their Zen lifestyle. Truly an enjoyable and thoroughly thought out book.
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Format: Paperback
"What is the sound of one hand clapping?"

Many have heard the question, few know its deepest significance. The Complete Book of Zen provides a roadmap for those willing to look for answers for themselves.

Wong Kiew Kit has distilled a lifetime of teaching and training practice into this magnificent work. As a Shaolin Grandmaster, Wong Kiew Kit is rarely placed to speak on Zen, because Zen (known as Ch'an in Chinese) was one of the three treasures of the Shaolin Arts, the other two being Shaolin Qigong and Shaolin Kungfu. It is Wong Kiew Kit's mastery of all three treasures which elevates this book above the great mass of Zen literature out there.

These missing aspects of the energetic and the martial also inform the reason as to the comparative lack of results of many modern meditators. Where is the transcendence?

Bodhidharma, the legendary founder of Zen, held that the body was as important as the mind in spiritual cultivation, and his successors at the Shaolin Temple continued this legacy with their integration of martial arts into meditation. Unfortunately today many people attempt deep meditation without first having cleared and energised their meridian system through Qigong or internal Kungfu; with the result that the transcendental fruits are often blocked to them. It is for this reason that The Complete Book of Zen is so necessary and important.
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