Review: “The Truth of This Life”

We review “The Truth of This Life: Zen Teachings on Loving the World as It Is” by Katherine Thanas.

Andrea Miller
21 March 2018

The Truth of This Life

Zen Teachings on Loving the World as It Is

By Katherine Thanas
Shambhala Publications 2018; 176 pp., $16.95 (paper)

In 1967, at age forty, the late Katherine Thanas was introduced to Zen by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. She went on to become the founding teacher for the Monterey Bay Zen Center and abbot of the Santa Cruz Zen Center, where her teaching style was marked by her literary sensibility and seriousness, her dry wit and joyousness. The Truth of This Life is drawn from dharma talks Thanas gave between 1996 and 2008. The volume was edited by Natalie Goldberg and Bill Anelli and has forewords by her friends and fellow Zen teachers Norman Fischer and Wendy Johnson. “I spent many years trying to be someone other than Katherine. But the more I practiced, the more I became Katherine,” Thanas once said. “When we’re most completely ourselves, we’re most completely free of ourselves.”

Andrea Miller

Andrea Miller

Andrea Miller is the editor of Lion’s Roar magazine. She’s the author of Awakening My Heart: Essays, Articles, and Interviews on the Buddhist Life, as well as the picture book The Day the Buddha Woke Up.