One Bird, One Stone: 108 American Zen Stories

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9781580632218: One Bird, One Stone: 108 American Zen Stories
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One Bird, One Stone is a distinctly American take on the ancient tradition and practice of Zen Buddhism. Drawn from the archives of major Zen centers in America and interviews with some of the most seminal figures of American Zen, including Philip Kapleau, Bernie Glassman, and Walter Nowick, One Bird, One Stone presents the notable encounters between teachers and students, the moments of insight and wisdom, the quotable quotes, and the humor of Zen as it has flowered in America over the last hundred-plus years.

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Review:

Zen is famous for its delightfully perplexing stories, and now Sean Murphy has taken the tales of American Zen and woven them into this venerable tradition. Murphy, a Zen student and accomplished writer, immersed himself in the history of American Zen, conducting numerous personal interviews and distilling from them 108 pithy stories of foreign and domestic masters in America. The stories could stand on their own as an American version of Zen Flesh, Zen Bones, but Murphy goes a step further. He adds what we wish were there for the old Zen stories: the history behind the tales. The players range from masters Suzuki, Maezumi, Seung Sahn, Robert Aitken, and Philip Kapleau to earnest students Gary Snyder, Alan Watts, and Philip Whalen. In addition to the big names, Murphy includes the less well known but equally interesting Tsung Tsai, Deh Chun, and others. Full of humor, history, and tantalizing takes on reality, One Bird, One Stone stands as a genuine Zen classic. --Brian Bruya

About the Author:

Sean Murphy teaches creative writing, literature, and film and the University of New Mexico in Taos, and co-teaches with Natalie Goldberg (bestselling author of Writing Down the Bones) in her writing and meditation workshops. He has twelve years of formal Zen training under the direction of Taizan Maezumi Roshni of the Zen Center of Los Angeles and John Daido Loori Roshi of Zen Mountain Monastery in upstate New York.

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