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Lions Roar : May 2016
DON’T BE A JERK And Other Practical Advice from Dogen, Japan’s Greatest Zen Master By Brad Warner New World Library 2016; 328 pp., $15.95 (paper) The Shobogenzo is a revered 800-year-old Zen Buddhism classic. It was written by the founder of the Soto school of Zen, Eihei Dogen, who is considered one of Buddhism’s most important but difficult philosophers. Zen priest Brad Warner, a student of the Shobogenzo for thirty years, para- phrases this work in his trademark style—irreverent, astute, contrary, and entertaining. With cheeky chapter titles such as “Note to Self: There Is No Self ” and “How to Sit Down and Shut Up,” Warner’s humorous take is interspersed with ruminations on topics such as feminism, reincarnation, and the debate between science and religion. NATURAL BRAVERY Fear and Fearlessness as a Direct Path of Awakening By Gaylon Ferguson Shambhala 2016; 252 pp., $16.95 (paper) “The word ‘fear’ spans diverse experiences: being some- what frightened, worried, anxious, having a phobia, breaking out in a cold sweat, completely panicked,” writes Buddhist teacher Gaylon Ferguson in Natural Bravery. This book looks at freedom from fear through the lens of ancient traditions featuring courage and compassion, with a specific focus on the Shambhala teachings. Ferguson tells us that generally we create our own fear, and awareness of this fact can help us find our way to bravery—leading to better lives not only for ourselves, but giving us the capac- ity to extend this newfound fearlessness to others. JAYA’S GOLDEN NECKLACE By Peter Linenthal Wisdom 2015; 40 pp., $16.95 (paper) In Jaya’s Golden Necklace, young Jaya learns the value of life’s most precious resource— believing in yourself. In this children’s tale, Jaya sets off on a very important mission given to her by the king. Along the way, she encounters obstacles that cause the deities Shiva, Inanna, and Hercules to appear from the golden coins on the necklace her mother has given her. The deities help Jaya overcome her challenges, all the while showing her strengths she didn’t know she had within her. Author and illustrator Peter Linen- thal’s book teaches children that they already have what they need to be capable, brave, and strong. ♦ REVIEWS LONG RETREATS MEDITATION, CONVERSATION, ART, POETRY, AND PRIVATE INTERVIEWS. SUMMER JUNE 12–19, 2016 PRESENTATION CENTER LOS GATOS, CA FALL OCTOBER 8–15, 2016 ANGELA CENTER SANTA ROSA, CA OPEN MIND RETREATS A ZEN PRACTICE MADE NATIVE TO OUR WESTERN CULTURE, HELD BY THE SEA. STORIES, KOANS, MEDITATION, & DEPTH. FALL AUGUST 18–21, 2016 WINTER NOVEMBER 17–20, 2016 COMMONWEAL CENTER BOLINAS, CA A NEW KIND OF ZEN. RETREATS WITH JOHN TARRANT AND THE TEACHERS & COMMUNITY OF PACIFIC ZEN INSTITUTE CHANGE FOR REAL LIFE PACIFICZEN.ORG LION’S ROAR | MAY 2016 80