Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
November 8, 2011 1:58 PM   Subscribe

Teachings on Right Practice by Shunryu Suzuki, as compiled in Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, read by Peter Coyote: "Posture", "Breathing", "Control", "Mind Weeds", "The Marrow of Zen", "Bowing", "Nothing Special"
posted by Trurl (15 comments total) 89 users marked this as a favorite
Wow. Thanks. I go to a Zen temple in this tradition, the tradition of the San Francisco Zen Center. and I've never heard this reading of Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind before. I'll be recommending it to friends. A few times a year we get a visit from teachers from SFZC, and some of them were Suzuki Roshi's students. They manage to be both vigorous and gentle, to be a presence in the room without it ever being a big deal. There is a kind of soft directness I've found only in people who've meditated for many years. I have a number of close friends who are not only not religious but are convinced that the world would be much better off without religion. I try to explain to them exactly why I think that religion is important, why ritual is important. It has nothing to do with an afterlife and nothing to do with a god. I've just never found anything else that looks and feels so much like a good way to live.
posted by no mind at 2:24 PM on November 8, 2011 [10 favorites]

I approve!
posted by ZenMasterThis at 2:25 PM on November 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

First two comments are eponysterical!

This thread is a winner!
posted by hippybear at 2:30 PM on November 8, 2011 [5 favorites]

One of the few books that stays with me. Definitely one of those books you read, and find yourself a few months/years down the road going, "Oh, so that's what he was talking about". The one on mind weeds is one of the more important things I think I've ever read. I'm not sure what chapter it's in, but he compares reality to Yosemite Falls. It's not a only a beautiful metaphor but also a really useful visualization of the individuals relationship to the whole (or the illusion of separation, depending on how you want to look at it). A really amazing book.
posted by doctor_negative at 2:34 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by not_on_display at 2:43 PM on November 8, 2011 [11 favorites]

Peter Coyote is one of our mod's uncle.
posted by timsteil at 2:58 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Did Coyote know Jobs?

(Please insert $1 if you take that as a straight line.)
posted by jiawen at 3:01 PM on November 8, 2011

Yeah, I was gonna say, Coyote is all right, but watch out for his family!
posted by OmieWise at 3:07 PM on November 8, 2011

shunryu suzuki is a savage dude and his books are savage rectangles of good knowledge

meditating is good business
posted by beefetish at 3:23 PM on November 8, 2011

This is the only spiritual book that I still think is worth owning. I am atheist, and I find more wisdom in this small book than almost anything else.

Personally, I don't care much for Coyote's reading of it, because it reads so informally and directly. But It's Great. :)

Thanks for posting this!
posted by rebent at 3:24 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Shunryu Suzuki....a true master.
posted by eggtooth at 5:26 PM on November 8, 2011

watch out for his family!

I'm just glad this isn't about him being the voice of iPad. He was ordained as a Zen Buddhist priest this Summer which is one of those facts about him that somehow didn't make Wikipedia. I'd heard this before and didn't know it was online, thanks for posting.
posted by jessamyn at 5:53 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

I just bought Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind after learning about it through the Steve Jobs Eulogy thread last week. Someone posted this link asking "What kind of Buddhist was Steve Jobs really" I don't want to derail here on that, but I enjoyed that article and it made me curious enough about this book. Incidentally I'm reading The Spiritual Journey of Alejandro Jodorowsky right now and wow, what an interesting book that is too. Some nice Zen nuggets in there...amongst the surrealist craziness. Thanks for posting!
posted by Capricorn13 at 6:01 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Thank you.
posted by ZeusHumms at 11:56 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

I enjoyed that article and it made me curious enough about this book.
Me too! Also that article was by Mefi's own digaman.
posted by dhruva at 10:31 AM on November 15, 2011

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