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The Zen Buddhism Community

A community for Zen Buddhists and those interested
Posting Access:
Anybody , Moderated
What is Zen? The true answer is for you to find out for yourself.

Zen, or Ch'an as it was originally called in China, is a Buddhist sect focused on personal meditative practice. Zazen is formal sitting practice, and generally considered the heart of Zen.

Zen has inspired and influenced many artforms, some of the more traditional ones being:
Shodo: Zen calligraphy
Zenga: Zen paintings
Chado: Chaji/tea ceremony
Suizen: Zen shakuhachi (bamboo flute) practice
Kyodo: Zen archery
Kado: Zen ikebana/flower arrangement
Noh: Drama

Traditionally, the Zen artist gains understanding from practice, his or her artform enriching and extending Zen practice.

Through artistic influence, Zen gave birth to an aesthetic in Japan known as Wabi Sabi.

As well as arts, Zen has influenced some forms of martial arts. Bodhidharma is even credited with creating some forms of martial arts as well as founding Ch'an/Zen.

Some starting-out book suggestions by members:
Buddhism: Plain and Simple by Steve Hagan
The Three Pillars of Zen by Phillip Kapleau
Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind by Shunryu Suzuki
Taking the Path of Zen by Robert Aitken
Hardcore Zen by Brad Warner

Some related LJ communities:
buddhists The Buddhism Community
daily_zen A Zen quote every day
zen_within A community focused sharply on meditative practice

What is Zen? The true answer is for you to find out for yourself.