> Skip to content
The True Dharma Eye
  • Published: 1 February 2010
  • ISBN: 9781590304655
  • Imprint: Shambhala
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • RRP: $65.00

The True Dharma Eye



Zen Master Dogen's Three Hundred Koans.

When the thirteenth-century master Eihei Dogen, one of the most influential thinkers in Zen Buddhism and founder of the Japanese Soto school, returned to Japan after four years of study in China, the fruit of his pilgrimage was recorded in a collection of koans called the Chinese Shobogenzo, also known as Shinji or Mana Shobogenzo. This collection of three hundred main cases was first published in 1766 under the title Shobogenzo Sambyakusoku (Treasury of the True Dharma Eye: Three Hundred Cases), and was known to have provided the raw material for much of Dogen's better known Japanese-language Kana Shobogenzo.

Dogen's collection of koans may come as a surprise to students of Zen as Dogen and the Soto school are generally known for the practice of shikantaza, or "just sitting," rather than for koan practice. Nevertheless, a careful study of Dogen's work reveals that he did use koans extensively in his writing and teaching, not only in the Kana Shobogenzo, but most of his other works as well. Zen students and scholars will find THE TRUE DHARMA EYE to be a source of deep insight into the mind of one of the world's greatest religious thinkers, as well as the practice of koan study itself.

Following the spirit of Dogen's pioneering efforts to carry the dharma across cultural divides, John Daido Loori Roshi, one of the West's most respected Zen teachers, has added his own verses and commentaries to each koan. The resulting volume presents readers with a uniquely contemporary perspective on Dogen's profound teachings and their relevance for twenty-first-century Western practitioners of Zen.

  • Published: 1 February 2010
  • ISBN: 9781590304655
  • Imprint: Shambhala
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • RRP: $65.00

About the author

John Daido Loori

John Daido Loori is one of the most well-known and respected Zen teachers in the United States. He is a successor of the late Taizan Maezumi Roshi and has received transmission in both Soto and Rinzai lineages of Zen.

Also by John Daido Loori

See all

Praise for The True Dharma Eye

"We are fortunate to receive this important new translation by Kaz Tanahashi and Daido Loori of Zen Master Dogen's early selection of three hundred koans that formed a basis for his many later koan commentaries. Daido Loori's introduction discussing Dogen's approach counteracts prevalent stereotypes that base all koan practice on later eighteenth-century training systems. Daido Loori's brief remarks and verse comments after each case suggest helpful perspectives for practitioners." - Taigen Dan Leighton, cotranslator and editor, Dogen's Extensive Record and Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community

Related titles