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Selected Works of D.T. Suzuki, Volume IIIComparative Religion$
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Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki, Richard M. Jaffe, Jeff Wilson, and Tomoe Moriya

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780520269170

Published to California Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520269170.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 22 October 2019

Zen, the Spiritual Heritage of the East

Zen, the Spiritual Heritage of the East

Chapter:
(p.60) 8 Zen, the Spiritual Heritage of the East
Source:
Selected Works of D.T. Suzuki, Volume III
Author(s):
Jeff Wilson, Tomoe Moriya, Richard M. Jaffe
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520269170.003.0008

This chapter contains an essay written by D. T. Suzuki in which he argues that Zen is the spiritual heritage of the East and makes the East in spirit what it is. Suzuki begins his essay with an observation on how Westerners viewed the East: they tended to think that it “belongs to the past and is worthy only of historical investigation.” Opposing such an Orientalist image created by the Japanologists of the time, Suzuki explained another side of Zen—that is, a modernized Zen that was free from rituals and rites for departed ancestors conducted in Japanese temples. He also clarifies that Zen is not a philosophy, religion, or meditation, but emphasizes that it is a mysticism of its own order. Interestingly, Suzuki asserts that Christians as well as Buddhists can practice Zen. Finally, he claims that perhaps what makes Zen unique as it is practiced in Japan is its systematic training of the mind.

Keywords:   philosophy, D. T. Suzuki, Zen, spiritual heritage, East, Japan, religion, meditation, mysticism

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