The Flowing Bridge - Praise

Guidance on Beginning Zen Koans

“After a Zen student has had a first awakening experience, the most important phase of training begins. In the Rinzai tradition, that training includes mastery of a series of 'miscellaneous' koans, which vary according to the lineage. With grace and deep insight, Elaine MacInnes has presented pointers to the beginning koans of her teacher Koun Yamada Roshi. Zen students everywhere are grateful for her profound and skillful contribution to our practice.”—Gerry Shishin Wick, author of The Book of Equanimity, and co-author of The Great Heart Way

“Elaine MacInnes is a Catholic nun and a Zen teacher in the lineage of the renowned master Koun Yamada. Over the years, she established zendos in the Philippines and in Canada. MacInnes has served as the director of the Prison Phoenix Trust in England, placing meditation teachers in more than 86 prisons. In this paperback, the author examines all the first koans that Zen students encounter in practice. MacInnes helps us to see the way koans enable us to let go of that which is unimportant.”—Spirituality and Practice

“This book is the only one so far that takes up the Miscellaneous Koans, a small but very important collection that can play a crucial part in a practitioner's training. Zen Master Elaine MacInnes has given the world a great gift.”—Ruben L.F. Habito, author of Living Zen, Loving God

“Who would have thought one of the most formidable Zen masters in the West would be a Roman Catholic nun living in retirement in a Toronto convent? With skill and grace Sister Elaine MacInnes guides us through a long neglected but essential aspect of koan introspection. A foundational work for anyone wishing to take up koan practice as an authentic spiritual discipline.”—James Ishmael Ford, Guiding Teacher of Boundless Way Zen and author of Zen Master Who? and If You're Lucky, Your Heart Will Break