Empty Bowl

02024-05-02 | Book, Zen | 5 comments

For years I have been reading books borrowed from the public library or e-books I bought, but last week I broke down and bought three real books when I discovered this publisher: Empty Bowl. I bought three translations from Chinese texts, by Red Pine (aka Bill Porter). They arrived yesterday and are most lovely editions. Except for Zen Roots these small books are not available as e-books. 

By now I Ihave read Trusting the Mind, by Seng Ts’an, who was the third patriarch of Chan/Zen, twice already. I believe it shall travel with me for a long time, the way a book with the poetry of Ryokan used to. 


  1. anne

    zen…..really do not know what to make of the teachings.

    (Can’t understand, ..won’t understand ??. )
    (Self / no self ..often wonder if it really matters at all… free will.. soul.- i either have it or i don’t )

    For many, reading texts – Sutra’s, Quran, Torah , Bible ..brings peace of mind, useful insights…a guiding light.

    (although, not sure how things unravel so badly – considering all the wisdom in these precious books hold)

    (good executive summaries helpful – like the books you bought, otherwise need a PhD in subject area)

  2. Steve

    Interesting you post these now.

    Semester ended on 20240510.

    As a parting gift a student who had been struggling and who I tutored over the term handed me the “Zen Epigrams” and “Stonehouse’s …” books, and gave me a hug. We had talked about Zen, Taoism, and Eastern Orthodox Christianity over the term on a regular interval in between solving all manners of analogue circuits. The student finished with a B+, but was barely passing (D-) at midterm.

    Never had that happen in 20 years of collegiate teaching.


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