Black Illumination: Zen and the poetry of death

Jul 2, 2016

Black Illumination: Zen and the poetry of death

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On a winter morning in 1360, Zen master Kozan Ichikyo gathered together his pupils. Kozan, 77, told them that, upon his death, they should bury his body, perform no ceremony and hold no services in his memory. Sitting in the traditional Zen posture, he ...

In space-tight Japan, how to live like a minimalist

Jun 21, 2016

In space-tight Japan, how to live like a minimalist

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Fumio Sasaki’s one-room Tokyo apartment is so stark friends liken it to an interrogation room. He owns three shirts, four pairs of trousers, four pairs of socks and a meager scattering of various other items. Money isn’t the issue. The 36-year-old editor has made ...

Hakuin: The sight of one hand clapping

Jan 17, 2013

Hakuin: The sight of one hand clapping

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Most people know the famous riddle, “What is the sound of one hand clapping?” Many are also aware that it is connected with Zen Buddhism, and some will even know that it is a famous koan by the 18th-century monk Hakuin. A koan, of ...