Back in February, I opened the latest issue of Lion’s Roar and read an article by John Tarrant that blew me away. Mostly, it blew me away because I had a hard time following it. It was really my first introduction into Zen koans and even his explanation was mind-opening and intangible to me. So, naturally, I had to buy his book.
Short review? LOVED IT.
Each chapter breaks down a traditional Zen koan and guides you with ways to work with it. I’ve been playing with one of these koan’s everyday since reading that initial article. It’s powerful stuff. I’d love to know your thoughts and your favorite koan if you pick up
this book. Please share with me!
Description from Amazon:
Bring Me the Rhinoceros is an unusual guide to happiness and a can opener for your thinking. For fifteen hundred years, Zen koans have been passed down through generations of masters, usually in private encounters between teacher and student.
This book deftly retells more than a dozen traditional koans, which are partly paradoxical questions dangerous to your beliefs and partly treasure boxes of ancient wisdom. Koans show that you don’t have to impress people or change into an improved, more polished version of yourself. Instead you can find happiness by unbuilding, unmaking, throwing overboard, and generally subverting unhappiness. John Tarrant
brings the heart of the koan tradition out into the open, reminding us that the old wisdom remains as vital as ever, a deep resource available to anyone in any place or time.