Zen Thought for the Day


I picked up a beautiful little edition of a book called Zen Buddhism in a shop in the west of England recently. No author or editor is credited (and there’s something Zen-like about that). The book was published by the Peter Pauper Press (Mount Vernon, New York) in 1959. This publisher was so named because it sought to publish elegant editions that ‘even a pauper could afford’ (you can find out more about the Peter Pauper Press here).
The book is subtitled An Introduction to Zen with Stories, Parables and Koan Riddles with Cuts from Old Chinese Ink-Paintings. Some of the stories will be familiar to readers of the popular book Zen Flesh, Zen Bones, edited by Paul Reps.
Here is a quotation from a good (again, uncredited) introduction:

Each of us is the apex of a cone of past ancestors, and the beliefs, acts, and events which determined them. Each of us is also a point from which a new cone of individuals and events will arise, each in some part a product of who we are.