zen mind

From Carlos

Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind / Shunryu Suzuki, Trudy Dixon / Weatherhill/Shambhala, numerous editions, 1970


“This book brought me to Zen practice.  Behind Suzuki Roshi’s words I got a scent of a whole new possibility   …that there can be a new way of understanding that can lead to a healthier outlook and way to live by.”



gotama buddha

From Sam Reggio

Gotama Buddha: a biography based on the most reliable texts / Hajime Nakamura / Kosei Publishing Co., Tokyo, 2000


“The title of this book – in two volumes – is nice and self-explanatory.  This is indeed a long, in depth biography of the historical person of the Sidhartha Gotama Buddha compiled from numerous Sanskrit, Chinese, Japanese, and I’m sure a few other texts.  Nakamura is going for accuracy here, and so the breadth of this book is wide.  I like how he takes the time to explain why specific historical facts, repeated or not repeated in specific texts through the centuries, may or may not come to us as particularly factual or accurate.  It’s great to try to get a portrait of a living, breathing human being making decisions given his geographical and social contexts, and Nakamura’s prose is not without personal anecdote or humor.  This is not easy reading; it’s wonderfully dry and erudite (if you like this sort of thing).  Recommended if you like biography and history, with the religion and language components of the subject matter front and center.”