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Subtle Wisdom: An Introduction to Ch'an Buddhism Paperback – 1 Oct 1999

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Product Description


"Ch'an Master Sheng-yen is a great teacher and I have great confidence in his scholarship and wisdom. I feel privileged to be his friend, and admire what he has been doing for the Buddhadharma in the East as well as in the West."
--Thich Nhat Hanh
"When I listen to Master Sheng-yen's presentation of Ch'an Buddhist teachings, my immediate and very profound feeling is that I am listening to words of wisdom from someone who is very experienced and a great practitioner."
--His Holiness, the Dalai Lama

From the Inside Flap

Master Sheng-yen, a dharma descendant from the founders of Buddhism in China, considers the concepts of suffering, enlightenment, and compassion; provides a glossary of key terms; and briefly recaps the history of Buddhism in China. But he goes beyond these issues to discuss contemporary matters and questions he has encountered in his years of teaching in the United States. Sometimes personal and always instructive, Sheng-yen's introductory work is perfect for those just coming to Buddhism, and for those who are already very familiar with the Tibetan and Zen schools.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great intro to Chinese Buddhism. 18 Oct. 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have studied Buddhism for over 20 years (mostly Zen), but was not all that familiar with authentic Ch'an Buddhism. Master Sheng yen was recommended by a friend and out of all his books I've found this the most accessible and most comprehensive. It's a great place to start if , like me, you want profound wisdom at an understandable level.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Einstein 1 Mar. 2001
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Ah, he says Einstein is religious. I don't think that's true, is it? But, that little smudge aside, this book is, as has been said before, one of the best introductions to Ch'an buddhism you can buy. It outlines the major forms of zen practice, some you probably hadn't heard of (HuaTou, MoChao), as well as some autobiographical parts, explanations of core Buddhist belief, as well as a great chapter on compassion. In fact, the book gives an exercise in compassion you can practice each day to help you out with it. You don't find that much in Zen these days.
5.0 out of 5 stars A great introductory text by a master 24 May 2014
By Russell Halsted - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
A fine introduction to Chan with the added benefit of biographical details by the author, a genuine master. I have read a number of Sheng Yen's books now and find him along with Thomas Cleary to be the most readable author covering Chinese religious thought. Cleary's coverage of various sects is more extensive but Sheng Yen is able to speak with authority on the subject of Ch'an. Master Sheng Yen comes as close to speaking the ineffable as I have experienced. If you are interested in Chan, I highly recommend you follow this introduction by reading some of Master Sheng Yen's other books. If you wish to learn about the Tibetan tradition, I have found Tenzin Wangyal to a readable master of that linage.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 11 Jan. 2015
By M. Fujii - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars meditation time 16 Mar. 2010
By C.M. - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am practicing Nicherin Buddhism and am always looking for ways to augment the teachings. saw this book at the library and found it very interesting. it predates and blends in with the Daishonins's teachings. if anyone is interested in learning in learning more about the Nicherin Buddhism, please go to [...].
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