Zen Dust

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Volume 10, issue 2. Article Peer review Metrics Related articles. Volume 10, issue 2 Atmos. This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3. How to cite: Almansa, A.

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Search articles Author Title Abstract Full text. Fraser Weatherhill, Zen Dust. Along with the appendices, which include genealogical charts of Zen lines, and the extensive index, it is these last sections totaling nearly pages that make Zen Dust an invaluable companion not only for students and Zen adepts seeking to delve in the unique spiritual training that koan study entails, but also for scholars and researchers of Zen Buddhism.

Keywords: Koan. Zen Buddhism. She married Sokei-an , the Zen priest in residence there, in , but he died within a year. She stayed in Kyoto for most of the rest of her life, becoming in the first foreigner to be a priest of a Rinzai Zen temple, and the only westerner, and the only woman, yet to be a priest of a Daitoku-ji temple.

She was careful to record, however, that she did not perform the usual duties of a priest, "because I was a foreigner, a woman, untrained in temple procedures, and because I needed the years left me to carry on the work of spreading Zen to the west. Sasaki was instrumental in the translations into English of many Zen texts.

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One of the most important was Zen dust; the history of the koan and koan study in Rinzai Lin-chi Zen, published in by her own First Zen Institute. Early life and developing interest in Eastern religions. Ruth Fuller was born and grew up in Chicago, and enjoyed wealth and privilege. She took piano lessons in Switzerland for several months in , and also studied French and German with private tutors in Europe for a year and a half.

In , she married Edward Warren Everett, a trial attorney twenty years older than herself.

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At the end of , a daughter was born, Eleanor. From to , Eleanor was married to writer and Zen philosopher Alan Watts. This resort was led by Pierre Bernard, and offered adult education in yoga and Eastern philosophy and religions. Then from to , she studied Sanskrit and Indian philosophy at the University of Chicago. First trips to Asia.

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On a family sojourn to East Asia, Ruth met D. Suzuki, who gave her basic instruction for meditation, and told her that the best way to learn about Zen would be to return to Japan for an extended stay. Back in the US, she kept up a meditation practice and a correspondence with Suzuki. In , she returned to Japan, arriving April 1.

At first, she sat in the roshi's small private temple, because she was not allowed in the zendo. Six days a week, she rose at 5am, did zazen until 7am, had breakfast, went to Nanzen-ji, did zazen there all day, returned home for supper and a bath, and did more zazen at home until midnight. Nanshinken gave her a koan, and Suzuki acted as interpreter between roshi and student.

After a month, she began to sit in the zendo, where the monks, originally resistant, soon welcomed her presence. She was back in the US in the summer. Decades later, she referred to those months at Nanzen-ji as "the most completely satisfactory time I have ever had in my life. Her research team in Kyoto. She gathered together and employed a small team to study and do translation work under her leadership, and under the banner of the First Zen Institute of America in Japan or Nichibei Daiichi Zen Kyokai, founded in Her headquarters was Ryosen-an, a subtemple within Daitoku-ji. Most of the team had other, full-time jobs, and did work in this team part-time.


Sasaki originally planned to use translations made by her deceased husband, Sokei-an, and recorded by his students in New York, but the researchers found these translations inadequate. The director of the team was Iriya Yoshitaka — , who was considered the world's foremost authority on colloquial Chinese of the Tang and Sung Dynasties.

English professor Kanaseki Hisao — was on the team, as well as Yokoi later Yanagida Seizan , who taught at Kyoto University and later was president of Hanazono University.

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Yampolsky wrote in that Yanagida "is recognized as the foremost scholar of Zen Buddhism in both China and Japan. Sasaki sponsored Snyder's first trip to Japan.

This group was dealt a blow in August , when she dismissed Yampolsky whom she accused of stealing the team's translation of the Rinzai-roku to publish it as his own , and Watson and Snyder resigned in protest.