Search results for: women-living-zen

Women Living Zen

Author : Paula Kane Robinson Arai
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In this study, based on both historical evidence and ethnographic data, Paula Arai shows that nuns were central agents in the foundation of Buddhism in Japan in the sixth century. They were active participants in the Soto Zen sect, and have continued to contribute to the advancement of the sect to the present day. Drawing on her fieldwork among the Soto nuns, Arai demonstrates that the lives of many of these women embody classical Buddhist ideals. They have chosen to lead a strictly disciplined monastic life over against successful careers and the unconstrained contemporary secular lifestyle. In this, and other respects, they can be shown to stand in stark contrast to their male counterparts.

Bringing Zen Home

Author : Paula Arai
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Healing lies at the heart of Zen in the home, as Paula Arai discovered in her pioneering research on the ritual lives of Zen Buddhist laywomen. She reveals a vital stream of religious practice that flourishes outside the bounds of formal institutions through sacred rites that women develop and transmit to one another. Everyday objects and common materials are used in inventive ways. For example, polishing cloths, vivified by prayer and mantra recitation, become potent tools. The creation of beauty through the arts of tea ceremony, calligraphy, poetry, and flower arrangement become rites of healing. Bringing Zen Home brings a fresh perspective to Zen scholarship by uncovering a previously unrecognized but nonetheless vibrant strand of lay practice. The creativity of domestic Zen is evident in the ritual activities that women fashion, weaving tradition and innovation, to gain a sense of wholeness and balance in the midst of illness, loss, and anguish. Their rituals include chanting, ingesting elixirs and consecrated substances, and contemplative approaches that elevate cleaning, cooking, child-rearing, and caring for the sick and dying into spiritual disciplines. Creating beauty is central to domestic Zen and figures prominently in Arai’s analyses. She also discovers a novel application of the concept of Buddha nature as the women honor deceased loved ones as “personal Buddhas.” One of the hallmarks of the study is its longitudinal nature, spanning fourteen years of fieldwork. Arai developed a “second-person,” or relational, approach to ethnographic research prompted by recent trends in psychobiology. This allowed her to cultivate relationships of trust and mutual vulnerability over many years to inquire into not only the practices but also their ongoing and changing roles. The women in her study entrusted her with their life stories, personal reflections, and religious insights, yielding an ethnography rich in descriptive and narrative detail as well as nuanced explorations of the experiential dimensions and effects of rituals. In Bringing Zen Home, the first study of the ritual lives of Zen laywomen, Arai applies a cutting-edge ethnographic method to reveal a thriving domain of religious practice. Her work represents an important contribution on a number of fronts—to Zen studies, ritual studies, scholarship on women and religion, and the cross-cultural study of healing.

Zen Women

Author : Grace Schireson
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This landmark presentation at last makes heard the centuries of Zen's female voices. Through exploring the teachings and history of Zen's female ancestors, from the time of the Buddha to ancient and modern female masters in China, Korea, and Japan, Grace Schireson offers us a view of a more balanced Dharma practice, one that is especially applicable to our complex lives, embedded as they are in webs of family relations and responsibilities, and the challenges of love and work. Part I of this book describes female practitioners as they are portrayed in the classic literature of "Patriarchs' Zen"--often as "tea-ladies," bit players in the drama of male students' enlightenments; as "iron maidens," tough-as-nails women always jousting with their male counterparts; or women who themselves become "macho masters," teaching the same Patriarchs' Zen as the men do. Part II of this book presents a different view--a view of how women Zen masters entered Zen practice and how they embodied and taught Zen uniquely as women. This section examines many urgent and illuminating questions about our Zen grandmothers: How did it affect them to be taught by men? What did they feel as they trying to fit into this male practice environment, and how did their Zen training help them with their feelings? How did their lives and relationships differ from that of their male teachers? How did they express the Dharma in their own way for other female students? How was their teaching consistently different from that of male ancestors? And then part III explores how women's practice provides flexible and pragmatic solutions to issues arising in contemporary Western Zen centers.

Women in Korean Zen

Author : Martine Batchelor
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In this engagingly written account, Martine Batchelor relays the challenges a new ordinand faces in adapting to Buddhist monastic life: the spicy food, the rigorous daily schedule, the distinctive clothes and undergarments, and the cultural misunderstandings inevitable between a French woman and her Korean colleagues. She reveals as well the genuine pleasures that derive from solitude, meditative training, and communion with the deeply religiouswhom the Buddhists call "good friends." Batchelor has also recorded the oral history/autobiography of her teacher, the eminent nun Son'gyong Sunim, leader of the Zen meditation hall at Naewonsa. It is a profoundly moving, often light-hearted story that offers insight into the challenges facing a woman on the path to enlightenment at the beginning of the twentieth century. Original English translations of eleven of Son'gyong Sunim's poems on Buddhist themes make a graceful and thought-provoking coda to the two women's narratives. Western readers only familiar with Buddhist ideas of female inferiority will be surprised by the degree of spiritual equality and authority enjoyed by nuns in Korea. While American writings on Buddhism increasingly emphasize the therapeutic, self-help, and comforting aspects of Buddhist thought, Batchelor's text offers a bracing and timely reminder of the strict discipline required in traditional Buddhism.

A New Zen for Women

Author : Perle Besserman
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Perle Besserman's adventures in a Japanese Zen monastery provide the groundwork for this lively, heartwarming narrative of a woman's life in Zen. Engaging in cross-cultural dialogues with nuns and laywomen in India, China, Japan, and more, Besserman dispels the notion that women had nothing to do with the founding and sustaining of Zen. She shows how women continue to transform traditional Zen in new and creative ways, integrating the practice of meditation into their lives. Both informative and entertaining, A New Zen for Women offers a new look at Western women encountering Zen.

Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women

Author : Cheris Kramarae
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For a full list of entries and contributors, sample entries, and more, visit the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women website. Featuring comprehensive global coverage of women's issues and concerns, from violence and sexuality to feminist theory, the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women brings the field into the new millennium. In over 900 signed A-Z entries from US and Europe, Asia, the Americas, Oceania, and the Middle East, the women who pioneered the field from its inception collaborate with the new scholars who are shaping the future of women's studies to create the new standard work for anyone who needs information on women-related subjects.

Promising Practices Women Volunteers in Contemporary Japanese Religious Civil Society

Author : Paola Cavaliere
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Promising Practices explores the ways women’s participation in contemporary Japanese religious civic organizations can work as a gateway toward participatory democracy and presents new perspectives on values and social interactions that embed democracy in the everyday women’s lives.

The Hidden Lamp

Author : Zenshin Florence Caplow
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The Hidden Lamp is a collection of one hundred koans and stories of Buddhist women from the time of the Buddha to the present day. This revolutionary book brings together many teaching stories that were hidden for centuries, unknown until this volume. These stories are extraordinary expressions of freedom and fearlessness, relevant for men and women of any time or place. In these pages we meet nuns, laywomen practicing with their families, famous teachers honored by emperors, and old women selling tea on the side of the road. Each story is accompanied by a reflection by a contemporary woman teacher--personal responses that help bring the old stories alive for readers today--and concluded by a final meditation for the reader, a question from the editors meant to spark further rumination and inquiry. These are the voices of the women ancestors of every contemporary Buddhist.

Zen in Brazil

Author : Cristina Rocha
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Widely perceived as an overwhelmingly Catholic nation, Brazil has experienced in recent years a growth in the popularity of Buddhism among the urban, cosmopolitan upper classes. In the 1990s Buddhism in general and Zen in particular were adopted by national elites, the media, and popular culture as a set of humanistic values to counter the rampant violence and crime in Brazilian society. Despite national media attention, the rapidly expanding Brazilian market for Buddhist books and events, and general interest in the globalization of Buddhism, the Brazilian case has received little scholarly attention. Cristina Rocha addresses that shortcoming in Zen in Brazil. Drawing on fieldwork in Japan and Brazil, she examines Brazilian history, culture, and literature to uncover the mainly Catholic, Spiritist, and Afro-Brazilian religious matrices responsible for this particular indigenization of Buddhism. In her analysis of Japanese immigration and the adoption and creolization of the Sôtôshû school of Zen Buddhism in Brazil, she offers the fascinating insight that the latter is part of a process of "cannibalizing" the modern other to become modern oneself. She shows, moreover, that in practicing Zen, the Brazilian intellectual elites from the 1950s onward have been driven by a desire to acquire and accumulate cultural capital both locally and overseas. Their consumption of Zen, Rocha contends, has been an expression of their desire to distinguish themselves from popular taste at home while at the same time associating themselves with overseas cultural elites.

Women s Buddhism Buddhism s Women

Author : Ellison Banks Findly
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A call to action for Buddhist women re-examines the religion's history and women's place in it while encouraging women to take a more active role in the religion. Original.

Encyclopedia of Monasticism

Author : William M. Johnston
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First published in 2000. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

Living Buddha Zen

Author : Lex Hixon
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This is Lex's final book, meticulously polished to his satisfaction in the months before his passing on. It is a modern re-creation (not translation) -- in language that is fresh and alive -- of the important Japanese classic, 'Denkoroku: The Record of Transmitting the Light'. The format follows that of the root text: koan, commentary, and concluding poem for each moment of sudden full illumination. Lex and his Zen mentor Roshi Bernard Tetsugen Glassman contemplated together and discussed each transmission from Sakyamuni Buddha through master to chosen successor for 52 generations. 'Living Buddha Zen' is Lex's passionate re-expression of the great classic, carrying his vision of how the same light is circulating in the today's world.

Women s Circus

Author : Adrienne Liebmann
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'The Women's Circus' is a community-based theatrical group structured around feminist principles. One hundred women are actively engaged in training workshops throughout the year, learning music, circus skills and ways of regaining control over their bodies. They are jugglers, aerialists, acrobats, technicians, musicians, designers, trainers and administrators who come together for the major annual performance each November. Whether you want to join the circus or be simply an armchair acrobat, the women in this book can tell you how it's done from women involved in every area, photographs, recipes, poetry, diagrams and much more.

Women in Religion

Author : Mary Pat Fisher
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This latest book by notable scholar and author Mary Pat Fisher reflects the growing interest in women in religion. Every chapter begins with a brief history of a religious tradition and women's roles in the development of that religion, giving students historical context. Biographical feature boxes and interviews are peppered throughout each chapter to provide insight into the personal experiences of key figures and practitioners. Extracts from holy texts, diaries, and articles, together with shorter quotations woven throughout the text, support and illustrate the main text discussion and enable critical issues to be raised and considered. This accessible text makes women's religious experiences and actions come to life in all their richness and variety.

Living by Zen

Author : Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki
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Seeds for a Boundless Life

Author : Zenkei Blanche Hartman
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Zenkei Blanche Hartman is an American Zen legend. A teacher in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki, author of Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, she was the first female abbot of an American Zen center. She is greatly revered, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she has lived and taught for many years. This, her long-awaited first book, is a collection of short teachings taken from her talks on the subject of boundlessness—the boundlessness that sees beyond our small, limited self to include all others. To live a boundless life she encourages living the vows prescribed by the Buddha and living life with the curiosity of a child. The short, stand-alone pieces can be dipped into whenever one is in need of inspiration.

Zen Ritual

Author : Steven Heine
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When books about Zen Buddhism began appearing in Western languages just over a half-century ago, there was no interest whatsoever in the role of ritual in Zen. Indeed, what attracted Western readers' interest was the Zen rejection of ritual. The famous 'Beat Zen' writers were delighted by the Zen emphasis on spontaneity as opposed to planned, repetitious action, and wrote inspirationally about the demythologized, anti-ritualized spirit of Zen. Quotes from the great Zen masters supported this understanding of Zen, and led to the fervor that fueled the opening of Zen centers throughout the West. Once Western practitioners in these centers began to practice Zen seriously, however, they discovered that zazen - Zen meditation - is a ritualized practice supported by centuries-old ritual practices of East Asia. Although initially in tension with the popular anti-ritual image of ancient Zen masters, interest in Zen ritual has increased along with awareness of its fundamental role in the spirit of Zen. Eventually, Zen practitioners would form the idea of no-mind, or the open and awakened state of mind in which ingrained habits of thinking give way to more receptive, direct forms of experience. This notion provides a perspective from which ritual could gain enormous respect as a vehicle to spiritual awakening, and thus this volume seeks to emphasize the significance of ritual in Zen practice. Containing 9 articles by prominent scholars about a variety of topics, including Zen rituals kinhin and zazen, this volume covers rituals from the early Chan period to modern Japan. Each chapter covers key developments that occurred in the Linji/Rinzai and Caodon/ Soto schools of China and Japan, describing how Zen rituals mold the lives and characters of its practitioners, shaping them in accordance with the ideal of Zen awakening. This volume is a significant step towards placing these practices in a larger historical and analytical perspective.

The Sutra of Hui neng Grand Master of Zen

Author : Thomas Cleary
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Hui-neng (638–713) is perhaps the most beloved and respected figure in Zen Buddhism. An illiterate woodcutter who attained enlightenment in a flash, he became the Sixth Patriarch of Chinese Zen, and is regarded as the founder of the "Sudden Enlightenment" school. He is the supreme exemplar of the fact that neither education nor social background has any bearing on the attainment of enlightenment. This collection of his talks, also known as the Platform or Altar Sutra, is the only Zen record of its kind to be generally honored with the appellation sutra, or scripture. The Sutra of Hui-neng is here accompanied by Hui-neng's verse-by-verse commentary on the Diamond Sutra—in its very first published English translation ever.

Japanese Journal of Religious Studies

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Encyclopedia of Women and World Religion

Author : Serinity Young
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"In spite of the sexism that has denied women full active status in their religions, the editor calls this title a "celebration" of the scholarship of recent years. In order to offer a global perspective, contributions were sought from non-Western as well as Western scholars for the 600 signed articles. Entries encompass individual religions and their variations, biographies, movements, issues, and the relationship of religion to the study of art, literature, and science. While broadest coverage is given to the major religions of the world, information is also provided on Sikhism, African religions, Santeria, and Native American religions and many others. An added feature is the synoptic outline, which provides conceptual themes to the reader. This valuable resource is accessible to the high school and college student, to the researcher and the general reader"."In spite of the sexism that has denied women full active status in their religions, the editor calls this title a "celebration" of the scholarship of recent years. In order to offer a global perspective, contributions were sought from non-Western as well as Western scholars for the 600 signed articles. Entries encompass individual religions and their variations, biographies, movements, issues, and the relationship of religion to the study of art, literature, and science. While broadest coverage is given to the major religions of the world, information is also provided on Sikhism, African religions, Santeria, and Native American religions and many others. An added feature is the synoptic outline, which provides conceptual themes to the reader. This valuable resource is accessible to the high school and college student, to the researcher and the general reader".--"Outstanding Reference Sources :the 1999 Selection of New Titles", American Libraries, May 1999. Comp. by the Reference Sources Committee, RUSA, ALA.