We’ve been studying Zen Buddhism through the writings of Shunryu Suzuki for a few weeks. For this roughly 4 page paper, respond to each of the following requirements:
- Characterize in your own words what Buddhism is and what message Buddhists have for the world through writings but also through the practices and techniques they offer? (We have only spent time studying Suzuki’s writings and have not practiced sitting in Zazen or performing any of his suggested techniques, but what have you gathered regarding Buddhist practice from what Suzuki has written about it?) There’s an opportunity to include researched support from a secondary source to help articulate what Buddhism is.
- Take any one small section of Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind and present its meaning in a couple double spaced pages. I am not referring to the three major “Parts” of the book (Right Practice, Right Attitude, or Right Understanding), but just a section within a part. For instance, you can choose “Breathing” from Right Practice, or you can choose “No Trace” from Right Attitude. There’s a good opportunity here to turn to a second source to help you develop your analysis.
- What did you find in the teachings that was particularly strong or particularly weak (you can discuss just one), and explain what was strong or weak about that teaching?
- Did you learn anything from our exploration in Buddhist thought that you plan to or hope to incorporate into your own life? If so, what is it and why would it be beneficial? If not, why not?
Resource Requirement: Your paper needs to include two references to resources. One of them can be a text we are using in class. Another should come from an outside scholarly resource.
- Stanford’s Encyclopedia of Philosophy: https://plato.stanford.edu/
- The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy: https://iep.utm.edu/
- PDF book attached.