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Natalie Goldberg & Bill Anelli: The Truth of This Life

Bookshop Santa Cruz
Event organized by Bookshop Santa Cruz

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Bookshop Santa Cruz welcomes authors Natalie Goldberg and Bill Anelli to discuss The Truth of This Life: Zen Teachings on Loving the World as It Is. The book is a collection of Zen talks by Katherine Thanas and edited by Natalie Goldberg and Bill Anelli.

Details here: http://www.bookshopsantacruz.com/event/natalie-goldberg-bill-anelli-truth-life

Drawn from her dharma talks, The Truth of This Life: Zen Teachings on Loving the World as It Is , presents the essential teachings of Thanas (1927–2012) in this single posthumous publication—her only book. Fearlessly direct and endlessly curious, Thanas’s understanding of Zen was inseparable from her affinity for the arts. She was an MFA student studying painting with Richard Diebenkorn, the preeminent Californian abstract painter, when she met Shunryu Suzuki, author of Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, in the sixties. Soon thereafter she stopped painting to dedicate herself to Zen, which she did for the last forty years of her life.

In The Truth of this Life, Thanas’s love of art and literature shine through in her elegant prose and her vast references, from poets William Stafford and Naomi Shihab Nye, to the Zen teachings of Dogen and Robert Aitken. Ranging on subjects from the practice of zazen to the meaning of life, Katherine urges us to “develop an insatiable appetite for inner awareness, to become proficient with this mind.” This slim volume is an important contribution by a well-loved and revered teacher. Katherine Thanas was a renowned dharma teacher who was the founding teacher for the Monterey Bay Zen Center and abbot of the Santa Cruz Zen Center. Katherine was introduced to Zen by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi in 1967, and she trained with him at Sokoji, San Francisco Zen Center, Tassajara, and Green Gulch Farm.

"Katherine Thanas stands firm and tall amid this generation of early American Zen pioneers." —Norman Fischer, from the foreword

Katharine Thanas (1927–2012) was a Soto Zen teacher who studied under Suzuki Roshi at the San Francisco Zen Center, founded the Monterey Bay Zen Center, and served as head teacher and abbot at the Santa Cruz Zen Center. She received lay ordination from Suzuki Roshi, was ordained as a priest by Zentatsu Baker Roshi in 1975, and received shiho (dharma transmission) from Tenshin Reb Anderson in 1988.

Natalie Goldberg is the author of over fourteen books, including the bestselling Writing Down the Bones, which has changed the way writing is taught. Her other books include Wild Mind, The Long Quiet Highway (both published by Bantam), and The Great Spring (Shambhala). She continues to lead workshops and retreats nationally and internationally, which she has done for over forty years.

Bill Anelli is a professor of philosophy at Modesto Jr. College in the heart of California’s central valley and has been teaching a wide range of courses there since 2005. He has served on the board of the American Association of Philosophy Teachers and leads workshops and presentations on the teaching of philosophy as well as expertology. Locally Bill directed the Civic Engagement Project at MJC and recently completed a National Endowment for the Humanities’ project, In Search of Common Ground focused on the culture and politics of the central valley.

This free event will take place at Bookshop Santa Cruz on Sunday, March 18th at 4 pm. Chairs for open seating are usually set up an hour before the event begins.