“Port does an excellent job of shining a much-needed light on Xutang’s work and, in his playful way, making it more relatable to the contemporary reader. . . . At times I felt as though I was right there with Port, practicing in his living room, surrounded by the same sights, sounds, and smells.”—Buddhistdoor Global
Also see Spirituality & Practice: Resources for Spiritual Journeys - Click here.
Excerpt: These 100 classic koans — all at least 800 years old in their original form — in translation, with commentary, are surely a great starting point. The language and tone are playful and accessible. The translator/commentator talks of “sharing these goodies with you,” and that’s the presentation feel of what could have been a dry affair. There’s a lot of Zen scholarship that seems designed only for “insiders.” This is not that kind of book.
Recordings of Past Book Events:
Chogye International Zen Center of New York from February 24
The Facebook Live Book Launch recording is here: Click.
Boundless Way Zen Talk from Sunday, February 7, 2021, with Boundless Way Zen. In this talk, Dosho Roshi gives some introductory information on this recently published koan collection and reads Cases 38 Baoying Immediately Entering Hell, and 54 Danxia's Lucky Guy and it Sucks to be You. A lively dharma dialogue ensues, including Boundless Way teachers Melissa Blacker Roshi and David Rynick Roshi. Click.
Buddhist Temple of Toledo Podcast
In this special episode, Rinsen Roshi interviews Dosho Port Roshi about his forthcoming book "The Record of Empty Hall". Join and listen, as these teachers and friends in the Dharma discuss the transmission and translation of the practice to the West from both academic and Dharmic perspectives. Click here.
Mountain Cloud Zen Center, Thursday evening February 11, 2021, recording of the session:
"All those interested in the study and practice of Zen koans will be grateful for this new translation, with commentary by Dosho Port, of The Record of Empty Hall. This koan collection wascompiled by Xutang Zhiyu, a prominent thirteenth-century Chinese Zen master who taught several important Japanese disciples. Port skillfully highlights Xutang’s creative use of terse substitute or alternate phrases in order to bring new light to one hundred fascinating koan cases culled from all the main Zen schools. This collection beautifully complements other important koan commentaries, such as the Blue Cliff Record and the Gateless Gate." —Steven Heine, author of Chan Rhetoric of Uncertainty in the Blue Cliff Record
"Quietly in Nebraska, for our sake, like an old Chinese sage, Dosho Port has been immersing himself in The Record of Empty Hall, one of the last great koan collections in China. Many delightful koans are to be found here and nowhere else, and Dosho shows how they can open your life. His translation is a work of love and a gift to all of us who walk the ancient path of awakening." —John Tarrant, author of Bring Me the Rhinoceros
"Xutang Zhiyu (Jpn.: Kido Chigu)—a lineage ancestor of all Rinzai Zen teachers in the present day—famously predicted that his teachings would flourish in Japan, but perhaps little knew that his brilliant, pithy dharma words might one day nourish Zen practitioners throughout the world. Dosho Port’s The Record of Empty Hall causes this brilliance to shine widely, skillfully capturing as it does something of Xutang’s mastery of the ‘samadhi of words’ within an eminently readable translation. I am tremendously grateful for it." —Meido Moore, author of The Rinzai Zen Way and Hidden Zen
"Like some galaxy far, far away, this collection of koans has been out there all along but inaccessible to us until now. Dosho Roshi, employing vision magnified through decades of Zen experience, has brought these twinkling stars, illumined by his commentaries, right to us, for us to gaze at in delight and wonder." —Bodhin Kjolhede, Abbot, Rochester Zen Center
"This remarkable volume is further proof that the great treasury of Zen texts as yet unknown in English, if put in the hands of a deft and lively translator like Dosho Port Roshi, who happens also to be a deep, committed practitioner, can be brought to scintillating new life in English. Port’s idiom is alive to contemporary life, and renders this centuries-old text urgently relevant to these challenging times. A shining new treasure for us all." —Henry Shukman, author of One Blade of Grass