Back to: Ways of Living

What is Zen? Does it matter?  Is it a religion?  Perhaps a philosophy, or a way of living, an art form, or merely a practice?  It can be each and all of these.  Considered a branch of Mahayana Buddhism, tradition says it was brought to China (ca 475 AD) by the Indian monk Bodhidharma.  The teaching spread to Korea, Japan, Vietnam and elsewhere and became known by different names whose traditions exist to this day. 

     In India Buddhism tended to emphasize the role of the holy beggar, whereas in China the followers of Buddhism had various duties and occupations, so the teachings had to stand up to the daily demands of life.  Also in China Buddhism incorporated aspects of Taoism and Confucianism. 

























A Question of Simple


Various Links on Zen


Wikipedia--always  a great online source

http://www.ibiblio.org/zen/faq.html  Frequently asked questions about Zen.

http://www.ciolek.com/WWWVL-Zen.html A very good resource site.

http://www.zenguide.com/   To quote:  "a comprehensive on-line resource for zen and buddhism practicioners providing information on history, principles, meditation guide, zen and buddhism related media (books, art, video and audio), organizations directory, and links to additional on-line resources.

http://www.dailyzen.com/  I like this site. It contains daily readings, posters, quotes, gifts, legends and e-cards.  It's more of a commercial than an information site.

Zen Gardens:

http://academic.bowdoin.edu/zen/  Bowdoin college website on Japanese Gardens