- Paperback: 138 pages
- Publisher: Weatherhill (1970)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0834800799
- ISBN-13: 978-0834800793
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 549 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #301,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice Paperback – April 1, 1973
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A respected Zen master in Japan and founder of the San Francisco Zen Center, Shunryu Suzuki has blazed a path in American Buddhism like few others. He is the master who climbs down from the pages of the koan books and answers your questions face to face. If not face to face, you can at least find the answers as recorded in Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, a transcription of juicy excerpts from his lectures. From diverse topics such as transience of the world, sudden enlightenment, and the nuts and bolts of meditation, Suzuki always returns to the idea of beginner's mind, a recognition that our original nature is our true nature. With beginner's mind, we dedicate ourselves to sincere practice, without the thought of gaining anything special. Day to day life becomes our Zen training, and we discover that "to study Buddhism is to study ourselves." And to know our true selves is to be enlightened. --Brian Bruya
From Library Journal
In one of the best and most succinct introductions to Zen practice, the important teacher Shunryu Suzuki discusses posture and breathing in meditation as well as selflessness, emptiness, and mindfulness.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Given that this book isn't exactly for those in the nascent stages of Zen Buddhism, it can be quite enigmatic in some spots. Still, this does not detract from the wealth of information the reader will be able to garner if they maintain an open mind.
Overall the book shows many insights individuals may follow to strengthen their core repertoire.
Some of the concepts the book discusses included mindfulness, the importance of calmness and focus in your life, proper practice, simplicity and much more.
For someone that's new in traversing the Zen realm, this book is quite appreciated. It synthesizes many complex topics in a simple to follow manner, and does so in a way that is rich in scope as well.
Reading this book will definitely help the reader become more cognizant of the mind in countless ways.
After having this book a while, and referenced it quite a bit, have a feeling that how much this book helps an individual is proportional to how much one focuses on each of the concepts. It really is an excellent book.
On first reading, I understood very little of what it was trying to convey. Sentences in English, easy enough to read, but conveying concepts that clearly went deeply beneath the words to a place that I didn’t comprehend and couldn’t feel.
I’ve since re-read it and now, continually re-read sections of it! Its instruction cannot really be conveyed via language alone. The concepts have to be absorbed in combination with meditation, intent and an openness to different ways of looking at life. Each sentence becomes a phrase to study and meditate on. Eventually, the meaning of the words start to appear as if birds in a wood when you are looking for them. Everything quiets down and then they appear to you, though they’ve always been there.
Over time, my understanding of the book has changed from it being a lecture, a ‘this is how you should do it’ instructional to a ‘look, this is how it can work’ observation - an understanding of how it is possible to live with straight forward and simple, profound joy.
It is one of my go-to resources for spiritual guidance and calm beauty.
my conception of Meditation (and the 'spiritual path', as we call it) drastically shifted.
"Beginner's Mind" is arranged into chapters/vignettes of short, 3-page talks. Suzuki's wisdom is simple, clear, & effective.
His talks help clarify the proper mental attitude with which to practice zazen [sitting-meditation], and by consequence, he clarifies the spiritual path in general.
**the 2 other notable books were: “Be As You Are: the Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi” &
“Midnights with the Mystic” (teachings of Sadhguru, Jagadish Vasudev)