Book of Equanimity

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Book of Equanimity or Book of Serenity or Book of Composure (Chinese: 從容錄, Cóngróng lù; Japanese: 従容錄, Shōyōroku) is a book compiled by Wansong Xingxiu (1166–1246), and first published in 1224. The book comprises a collection of 100 koans written by the Chan Buddhist master Hongzhi Zhengjue (1091–1157), together with commentaries by Wansong. Wansong's compilation is the only surviving source for Hongzhi's koans.[1][2][3][4]

Along with The Gateless Barrier, the Book of Equanimity is considered one of the two primary compilations of Zen dialogue.[5] Shohaku Okumura has called the collection "a classic text that is still studied by Zen students today."[6] Reb Anderson has called it "an auspicious peak in the mountain range of Zen literature, a subtle flowing stream in the deep valleys of our teaching, a treasure house of inspiration and guidance in studying the ocean of Buddhist teachings."[7] Gerry Shishin Wick, who published a translation of Book of Equanimity in 2005, says "although it was collected by a master in the Soto lineage, The Book of Equanimity, they are treated as Koans in the Rinzai, some Rinzai schools, and the Soto school studied them, but more as liturgy, rather than as Koans."[8]

Kōans included in Book of Equanimity[edit]


  • Cleary, Thomas. The Book of Serenity: One Hundred Zen Dialogues. Shambhala Publications. ISBN 9781590302491.
  • Wick, Gerry Shishin. The Book Of Equanimity: Illuminating Classic Zen Koans. Wisdom Publications. ISBN 9780861713875.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Buswell Jr., Robert E.; Lopez Jr., Donald S. (2013). The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism. Princeton University Press. p. 197. ISBN 9781400848058.
  2. ^ O'Brien, Barbara. "Introduction to Koans". Archived from the original on 2013-04-13. Retrieved 2013-04-16.
  3. ^ Wick, Gerry Shishin. The Book Of Equanimity: Illuminating Classic Zen Koans. Wisdom Publications. p. 2. ISBN 9780861713875.
  4. ^ Leighton, Taigen Dan (2000). Cultivating the Empty Field: The Silent Illumination of Zen Master Hongzhi. Tuttle Publishing. p. 5. ISBN 9780804832403.
  5. ^ Hamill, Sam. "Reviews: Book of Serenity / The Gateless Barrier". Tricycle: The Buddhist Review.
  6. ^ Okumura, Shohaku. Realizing Genjokoan. Wisdom Publications. p. 158. ISBN 9780861716012.
  7. ^ "Book of Serenity: One Hundred Zen Dialogues". Shambhala Publications. Archived from the original on 2013-03-05. Retrieved 2013-04-16.
  8. ^ "BG 109: Koan Training and the Different Styles of Zen". Buddhist Geeks. Archived from the original on 2013-04-15. Retrieved 2013-04-16.

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