Customer Review

Reviewed in Canada 🇨🇦 on February 3, 2004
Amazingly my volume of this book was published in 1964 and looking at the preface, the book was created from articles written in Japan in 1914 ... The author states if he can lead the reader to study more of his work he has achieved his goal. This volume will serve to quench the thirst and hunger of any reader who is interested in Zen and it will lead one to try to understand more of the concepts associated with this experience.
The introduction is written by Dr. Carl Gustav Jung, who tells us, that the oriental concepts of Tao, satori, and the Buddhist concept of kamma are so different from Western ideas that it is difficult to translate. Yet he gives his highest recommendations to this volume -- no small matter, from one such as he is... a world famous psychiatrist and psychologist. The Zen texts say "enlightenment" is a natural occurence, and that it is a state of insight into the nature of self. Jung tells us it is a state of "spiritual reality", that 'satori' is a psychic occurence. It is a state of 'seeing things differently', a state of "consciousness of the consciousness" ... It is associated with "becoming whole" ... a spiritual experience that is part of consciousness ... but more expansive. Jung considers it is duty to tell Westerners -- it is "the longest of roads" -- "difficulties strew the path" -- "trodden by only a few of our great men" -- it remains for most -- "a beacon on a high mountain, shining out in a haze future". [p.27]
D.T. Suzuki in his "Preliminary" describes the two paths of Buddhism, the Lesser Vehicle and Higher Vehicle. "Personal experience is everything in Zen." [p.33]"No amount of meditation will keep Zen in one place." [p.41] He provides chapters on "nihilistic zen", "illogical zen", and "zen a higher affirmation". Practical zen, koans, and acquiring '"satori" or a new viewpoint' are well documented with fine examples. For a book of *only* 132 pages the breadth, width and depth of detail is astonishing. The author proves to be a master of his subject, indeed, no one else can whet the appetite of a beginner and have them searching to know more. This is the best gift a writer can provide -- this author provides us his *very* *best*. Erika Borsos (erikab93)
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