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#225667 - 01/26/06 08:51 AM What are you reading?
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
On a new note, for the new year, if you have any reading suggestions specifically on aspects of 'Asian Art and Culture' feel free to share them and a little synopsis.

This is not a discussion thread (see Book Section). Posts that do not conform will be deleted (including my own!)

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#225668 - 02/24/06 07:15 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
Kimpatsu Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/04
Posts: 30
Loc: Tokyo, Japan
Try "Dogs and Demons" by Alex Kerr for the current state of Japanese society.

Added later by Harlan: Titles without any kind of description will be deleted in the future. Apparantly, this is a controversial book.

"In what may prove to be a highly controversial book, Kerr argues that Japan is in big trouble: a self-destructive country that is systematically destroying its landscape, its environment, its very culture by adherence to ideas and policies that are decades out of date. The author describes land-preservation schemes that end up destroying the land; a national health program that's near collapse; an education system that values conformity over originality; money-eating government programs that no one can seem to stop. In 1994, Japan produced 91.6 million tons of concrete (30 times as much as the U.S.), much of it used to build structures that serve no purpose. In 1998, Japan's government spent $136 billion on public works, more than what it cost to build the Panama Canal. It's hard to know if Kerr hits the mark here, but he makes a strong case. Expect him to start showing up on talk shows soon, and when he does, the requests for this inflammatory position paper will begin to build." -David Pitt, American Library Association


Edited by harlan (03/06/06 10:38 PM)
_________________________
I only do Shorinji Kempo for kicks.

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#225669 - 10/16/06 04:43 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
I'm reading James Clavell's "Noble House". It's about big business in Hong Kong. It's the sequel (of sorts) to "Tai Pan", which is about the founding of Hong Kong and the role of the tea trade in making HK the place it became. Very interesting.

Another really amazing book, if you can get it, is "Puppets of Nostalgia" by Jane Marie Law. It's about Japanese puppetry. http://www.pupress.princeton.edu/titles/6070.html
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See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

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#225670 - 10/16/06 04:47 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
Loved Clavell. Spent one summer reading all his books. I actually thought 'King Rat' was the best, and 'Tai Pan' and 'Noble House' more interesting than his famed 'Shogun'.

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#225671 - 10/17/06 03:49 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Did you read Gai Jin? It's an in-betweenquel of Tai pan and Noble House.

I've not read it yet but seems good.

What I like about Clavell is his historical research. He made tea interesting from a historical viewpoint. I was actually excited when I saw the Cutty Sark.
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#225672 - 10/24/06 07:36 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
pepto_bismol Offline
infinite kudos

Registered: 03/04/06
Posts: 480
I reccomend the Chronicles of Tao by Deng Ming-Dao.

It is 3 books in 1, the story of a born aristocrat, raised taoist monk and moved to america. (early 1900s)

a lot of taoist philosophy and differant aspects of the chinese culture in general.

(I read this book once a year, each time I get different things out of it)
_________________________
YAY pepto bismol! No... not... kryptonite

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#225673 - 11/14/06 10:56 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
schanne Offline
breaks things

Registered: 02/18/04
Posts: 4370
Loc: Woodbury NJ
The Unfettered Mind by Takuan Soho

Will let you know when I'm finished, so far very good if your into Zen and the sword.
_________________________
The way of the warrior does not include other ways... Miyamoto Musashi Schanne

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#225674 - 11/14/06 11:00 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: schanne]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
I wish we could get a 'book chat/discussion' going one of these days.

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#225675 - 11/20/06 09:56 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: schanne]
senseihonor Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/06
Posts: 62
Loc: Ontario, Canada
A Book of Five Rings (again). This translation is by Victor Harris (Overlook Press). I'm enjoying it more than Stephen Kaufman's translation.

Two kids books which I recently read to my son (but I enjoyed tremendously) are:
Zen Shorts by John J. Muth (Scholastics). We both really liked the character Stillwater.
Three Samurai Cats - A Story from Japan retold by Eric A. Kimmel (Scholastics)

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#225676 - 11/20/06 09:57 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
senseihonor Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/06
Posts: 62
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I'd be up for that! How do you go about getting one started?

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#225677 - 11/20/06 09:59 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: senseihonor]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
How about...we just start a thread calling for book suggestions? I'll do it.

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#225678 - 11/20/06 06:22 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
senseihonor Offline
Member

Registered: 09/09/06
Posts: 62
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Yes! Please!

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#225679 - 11/20/06 10:42 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: senseihonor]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
(Pssst! Look in the Meditation forum. )

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#225680 - 12/05/06 04:21 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
grumbleweed Offline
Member

Registered: 08/12/06
Posts: 446
I'm reading, again Henri Parmentiers Angkor (I googled this, nothing!) a book given to me by a little old lady I knew on my postround. When I told her I was going backpacking around South East Asia for a year she gave me this book all about Angkor Wat in Cambodia, she said she bought it in the 60's when she travelled there (it has numerous jottings she made in pencil throughout the book), its a facinating little book that goes into detail about one of my loves in life, Angkor Wat.
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"Irony is mainly used by the British in in order to distinguish themselves from Americans, which worked very well until the Americans had more guns than them."

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#225681 - 12/06/06 02:52 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: grumbleweed]
Prizewriter Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 2573
What am I reading? Nothing.

That might seem like an odd answer, but I mention it in a cautionary way. I use to be an avid reader, but in the last 6 months, I just haven't bothered with it.

In this time, I have noticed my articluation levels dropping, and I make far more spelling mistakes in my everyday writings than I use to.

Just goes to show you that the mind needs a workout too!
_________________________
"Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food" Hippocrates.

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#225682 - 04/23/07 08:03 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Prizewriter]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
'Zen Bow, Zen Arrow', by John Stevens.

A small book about Awa Kenzo, the archery master from 'Zen in the Art of Archery'.

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#225683 - 04/24/07 06:58 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
JoshuaMonjin Offline
Member

Registered: 10/13/06
Posts: 427
Loc: Fallon, Nevada
Rereading "Living the Martial Way" by Forrest Morgan. It deals with concepts of the martial arts like Mushin, Zanshin, etc and how to integrate the principals of martial arts into your life outside the dojo. Also "In the Dojo" by Dave Lowry about the different aspects and history of Japanese martial arts like etiquette, uniforms, and details about the arrangement of Kamiza, and the dojo itself.
_________________________
Jikishin kore dojo nari

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#225684 - 11/24/07 11:30 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
just finished with:
"Samurai William: The Englishman Who Opened the East"
http://www.amazon.com/Samurai-William-Englishman-Opened-East/dp/0374253854

a good and interesting read. The author (Milton) does a great job of providing the audience with a concise context surrounding the events described so the magnitude of those events are not lost on the reader.

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#225685 - 11/26/07 01:37 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Ed_Morris]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Here's an interesting read and something that can present a cultural reference from the author's vantage of Japan. The book is titled Mishima's Sword by Christopher Ross.

It's a narrative of Ross' (who is an Iaidoka) travels in Japan ostensively to find the sword with wich the famous author, Mishima, committed suicide.

In the course of his travels he gives a perspective of Japanese culture that is both entertaining, profound and funny.

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#225686 - 02/07/08 09:29 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: butterfly]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
bump

I've been reading about Suzuki Shoshan, a samurai turned zen monk in the Togugawa era.

1. 'Warrior Zen: the Diamond Mind...' by Braverman
Inexpensive and easy to read.

2. 'Death Was his Koan...' by Winston King
Expensive, but goes into much more detail about the time period, politics of the day, as well as gives a serious critique about Shosan's 'zen'.

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#225687 - 02/08/08 08:28 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Harlan:

Were you looking for a particular culture? What kind of reading do you prefer Story? History? Fiction? Sci-Fi ? Romance? Apologies if this has been already answered... unable to read the entire thread, (time deficit) this morning...

J

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#225688 - 02/08/08 09:03 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Ronin1966]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
Just a thread for reading suggestions. The general theme same as the forum "Asian Art and Culture'. I wouldn't call the above 'fun' reading, but I think might be interesting to those that study martial arts and are conscious of the intrinsic conflict between killing and most religious doctrines. Shosan's 'zen' was that 'work is dharma'...and even a samurai performing his duties, could be a good Buddhist.

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#225689 - 02/08/08 05:22 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Harlan:

I liked "the Life and Letters of Tofu Roshi" by Susan Moon.

I've reread "Graceful Exits" by Blackman (or snippets from it anyway). On my list is the revised edition of "Autobiography of a Yogi" by P. Yogananda and if, if I can find time somewhere in May, I will hopefully read "Okinawa: History of an Island People" by George Kerr and possibly, "Anatomy of Hatha Yoga" by David Coulter.

For my money as a general rule of thumb, for Asian Culture materials I appreciate anything that Shambhala Pub. puts/or has put out... but second hand will do!

Jeff

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#225690 - 09/26/08 05:28 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: harlan]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
I've been reading Haruki Murakami recently. Srangely, the idea of hunting for sheep or talking to cats doesn't seem to surreal to me.
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#225691 - 09/27/08 12:26 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
Ayub Offline
heartbreaker, lifetaker

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 825
Loc: London, UK
Quote:

I've been reading Haruki Murakami recently. Srangely, the idea of hunting for sheep or talking to cats doesn't seem to surreal to me.




ME TOO!!! I just opened this thread to talk about him. I'm reading Norwegian Wood. I'm actually not a fiction fan but I really respect the amazing descriptions and deep story and character development in this book.
_________________________
Cut me Mick!

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#225692 - 09/27/08 11:14 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Ayub]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Haven't tried NW yet. Kafka on the Shore was my baptism of fire, then Wild Sheep Chase. Same thoughts, the description and characterizations are amazing, particulalry when involved in the dream-like world he works in.
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#225693 - 10/08/08 09:15 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
now re-reading the geek classic: "The Cuckoo's Egg". not strictly MA related, but the author's wife apparently trains in Aikido.

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#225694 - 10/13/08 03:30 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Ed_Morris]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
who's it by and what's it about?
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#225695 - 10/13/08 09:31 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772

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#225696 - 10/20/08 05:14 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: Ed_Morris]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Hmmm, might be intresting.
_________________________
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

Supporting everyone saying "nuts to cancer"

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#225697 - 10/20/08 10:02 PM Re: What are you reading? [Re: trevek]
berserkerofdeath Offline
Member

Registered: 02/23/08
Posts: 25
Loc: Spokane, WA
Haven't read an MA book in a while. Reading "Teach Yourself Norwegian"
Favorite MA book is probably the one Jesse Glover wrote about Bruce Lee and Jun Fan. Good luck finding it though.

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#225698 - 11/29/08 12:09 AM Re: What are you reading? [Re: berserkerofdeath]
Ames Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/29/05
Posts: 1117
Why Norweigian?
_________________________
"Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought."
--Basho

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