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A uniquely playful and incisive collection of Zen teaching stories from a beloved American master.

A Modern Classic. In the tradition of the great koan collections and the records of ancient masters, Robert Aitken distills a lifetime of teaching down to its essence. Intriguing and deceptively simple, Zen Master Raven is a brilliant encapsulation of Zen in over a hundred koan-like encounters alongside many charming illustrations. Featuring curious beginners like Mallard and Mole and profound teachers like Brown Bear, Moose Roshi, and Zen Master Raven himself, this classic of contemporary Zen and will inspire seekers for generations to come.



About the Author

Robert Aitken

is a retired master of the Diamond Sangha, a Zen Buddhist society he founded in Honolulu in 1959 with his late wife Anne Hopkins Aitken. A lifetime resident of Hawai'i, Aitken R?shi is a graduate of the University of Hawai'i with a BA degree in English literature and an MA degree in Japanese studies. In 1941, he was captured on Guam by invading Japanese forces, and interned in Japan for the duration of World War II. In the camp, he met the British scholar R.H. Blyth, who introduced him to Zen Buddhism. After the war, he practiced Zen with Senzaki Nyogen Sensei in Los Angeles, and traveled frequently to Japan to practice in monasteries and lay centers with Nakagawa S?en R?shi, Yasutani Haku'un R?shi, and Yamada K?un R?shi. In 1974, he was given approval to teach by the Yamada R?shi, Abbot of the Sanbo Kyodan in Kamakura, Japan, who gave him transmission as an independent master in 1985. Aitken R?shi is the author of more than ten books on Zen Buddhism , and co-author of a book-length Buddhist-Christian dialogue. In Hawai'i he was instrumental in founding the Koko An Zendo, the P?lolo Zen Center, the Maui Zendo, and the Garden Island Sangha. A number of other centers in Europe, North and South America, and Australasia are part of the Diamond Sangha network. Aitken R?shi is co-founder of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship (now with a local East Hawai'i Chapter) and serves on its international board of advisors. He has been active in a number of peace, social justice, and ecological movements, and his writing reflects his concern that Buddhists be engaged in social applications of their experience. Aitken R?shi has given full transmission as independent masters to Nelson Foster, Honolulu Diamond Sangha and Ring of Bone Zendo in Nevada City, California; John Tarrant , Pacific Zen Institute in Santa Rosa, California; Patrick Hawk, Zen Desert Sangha in Tucson, Arizona, and Mountain Cloud Zen Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico; Joseph Bobrow, Harbor Sangha in San Francisco, California; Jack Duffy , Three Treasures Sangha in Seattle, Washington; Augusto Alcalde, Vimalakirti Sangha, in Cordoba, Argentina and Rolf Drosten, Wolken-und-Mond-Sangha (Clouds and Moon Sangha) , in Leverkusen, Germany. He authorized Pia Gyger, One Ground Zendo in Luzern, Switzerland, as an affiliate teacher of the Diamond Sangha. He joined with John Tarrant in giving transmission as independent masters to Subhana Barzaghi in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia; and to Ross Bolleter in Perth, Western Australia. As a retired master, Aitken R?shi works with a few long-time students, and continues to study and write. His work, , was published by Tuttle in 2002 [review]. His more recent publications, , and a new edition of , were released in October, 2003, by Shoemaker and Hoard.



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