Zen Traces: Exploring American Zen with Twain and Thoreau (Paperback)

Zen Traces: Exploring American Zen with Twain and Thoreau By Kenneth Kraft Cover Image
Usually arrives at our store within 4-7 days


"Kraft rubs together these pithy thoughts and phrases from traditional and present-day Zen with the sayings of Henry-David Thoreau and Mark Twain to come up with fresh portals of spiritual openness."--Spirituality & Practice

As Zen takes root in the west, new forms arise. For centuries Zen masters have tested their students with "koans" and "capping phrases." A koan is a spiritual paradox that must be solved intuitively. A capping phrase is a trenchant comment. Both are meditative practices that reveal deeper truths about the self and, ideally, lead to enlightenment.

In Zen Traces, Buddhist scholar Kenneth Kraft plays off these practices in a new idiom. He selects passages from four sources: traditional Zen, present-day Zen, Henry David Thoreau, and Mark Twain. When a koan-like story about a contemporary Zen teacher is paired with a pithy comment by Mark Twain, something fresh emerges.

About the Author

Kenneth Kraft, professor emeritus of religious studies at Lehigh University, is a scholar of Japanese Zen and socially engaged Buddhism. He is the author or editor of six books, including Eloquent Zen, Zen: Tradition and Transition, and Dharma Rain: Sources of Buddhist Environmentalism. Kraft holds a Ph.D. in East Asian Studies from Princeton University, an M.A. in Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Michigan, and a B.A. from Harvard University.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781589881280
ISBN-10: 1589881281
Publisher: Paul Dry Books
Publication Date: June 5th, 2018
Pages: 175
Language: English