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Customer Review

Reviewed in Canada 🇨🇦 on May 11, 2004
I don't know very much about Zen, but I can say that this book was very informative for the beginner. In the introduction, Jung characterizes Zen as the path to a new condition of consciousness wherein the conscious mind is allowed to rest so that elements from the unconscious mind can be brought to the surface. What rises out of the unconscious is dependent on what is needed to complete the conscious orientation. This characterization is very fascinating, though I think that Jung, being a psychologist/psychiatrist, naturally has a somewhat constructivist bias for the anti-metaphysical structure of Zen over other religious systems.
DT Suzuki himself presents the material with authority and concision. I've not read his "essays" but this work is much shorter, and would serve as preliminary reading. Topics include defining Zen (or rather, saying what it is not), the koan, satori, the monk's life, and the ralationship between Zen and logic (or rather, illogic).
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