Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko

Essays in Idleness The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko Written sometime between and the Essays in Idleness with their timeless relevance and charm hardly mirror the turbulent times in which they were born Despite the struggle between the Empe
  • Title: Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko
  • Author: Yoshida Kenkō Donald Keene
  • ISBN: 9780231083089
  • Page: 360
  • Format: Paperback
  • Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko
    Written sometime between 1330 and 1332, the Essays in Idleness, with their timeless relevance and charm, hardly mirror the turbulent times in which they were born Despite the struggle between the Emperor Go Daigo and the usurping Hojo family that rocked Japan during these years, the Buddhist priest Kenko found himself with nothing better to do, jotting down at random whaWritten sometime between 1330 and 1332, the Essays in Idleness, with their timeless relevance and charm, hardly mirror the turbulent times in which they were born Despite the struggle between the Emperor Go Daigo and the usurping Hojo family that rocked Japan during these years, the Buddhist priest Kenko found himself with nothing better to do, jotting down at random whatever nonsensical thoughts have entered my head The resulting essays, none of them than a few pages in length and some consisting of but two or three sentences, treat a great variety of subjects in a congenial, anecdotal style Kenko clung to tradition, Buddhism, and the pleasures of solitude, and the themes he treats are all suffused with an unspoken acceptance of Buddhist beliefs Above all, Kenko gives voice to a distinctively Japanese aesthetic principle that beauty is bound to perishability.
    Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko By Yoshida Kenkō Donald Keene,

    Essays in Idleness Sep , How he came to be reading the Essays in Idleness, might also be our little secret, except I will tell it He reads Christian websites, sometimes, and one thing led to another I noticed that Essays in Idleness Keene Written between and , Essays in Idleness reflects the congenial priest s thoughts on a variety of subjects His brief writings, some no than a few sentences long and ranging in focus Essays in Idleness The Tsurezuregusa of Kenk by Yoshida Essays in Idleness is a much sprawling work, which covers living as a monk and living a secluded life, but also discusses everything from courtly The first of these, Hojoki is a short Tsurezuregusa Essays in Idleness work by Yoshida Kenk Britannica In Japanese literature Kamakura period Essays in Idleness instead, he looks back nostalgically to the happier days of the past.Kenk s aesthetic judgments, often based on a this Essays in Idleness Columbia University Press May , Written between and , Essays in Idleness reflects the congenial priest s thoughts on a variety of subjects His brief writings, some no than a few sentences long and Essays in Idleness and Hojoki Penguin Classics Kindle Essays in Idleness is a most delightful book, and one that has served as a model of Japanese style and taste since the th century These cameo like vignettes reflect the importance of the little, Essays in Idleness The Tsurezuregusa of Kenko Kenko Written between and , Essays in Idleness reflects the congenial priest s thoughts on a variety of subjects His brief writings, some no than a few sentences long and ranging in focus from Essays in Idleness and Hojoki Penguin Classics Kenko Jul , In Essays in Idleness, his lively and sometimes ribald collection of anecdotes, advice, and observations, Kenko displays his fascination with earthly matters In the short memoir Hojoki ,

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    About " Yoshida Kenkō Donald Keene "

  • Yoshida Kenkō Donald Keene

    Yoshida Kenk , 1283 1350 was a Japanese author and Buddhist monk His most famous work is Tsurezuregusa Essays in Idleness , one of the most studied works of medieval Japanese literature Kenko wrote during the Muromachi and Kamakura periods.

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  • The great Buddha in Kamakura If man were never to fade away like the dews of Adashino, never to vanish like the smoke over Toribeyama, but lingered on forever in this world, how things would lose their power to move us The most precious thing in life is its uncertainty When in 1333 the Emperor Go Daigo returned triumphantly to Kyoto from exile to mark the end of the Kamakura Shogunate and the rule of the samurai, Yoshida Kenko 1283 1350 a middle ranking court officer and Buddhist monk must have [...]


  • If I fail to say what lies on my mind it gives me a feeling of flatulence Kenk 1285 1350 Kenk , a fourteenth century Japanese monk, courtier, poet, and antiquarian, had a lot on his mind Retired from the tumult of the imperial court, he spent whole days alone in his cottage in Kyoto, jotting random, nonsensical thoughts on slips of paper that he pasted to the walls After his death, these scraps were peeled away, sorted, and copied into a volume now known as Essays in Idleness 1332 These 243 epig [...]


  • This collection of Kenko s essays is often compared with Hojoki Visions of a Torn World by Chomei, but there is a vast difference Kenko might sound like he is just rambling and he takes that pose intentionally , but he is not He is talking about the existential dilemma of human being His awareness is very modern He is keenly aware of the problems and also his powerlessness He cannot solve the problems, so he writes them down, with a compassionate yet cool attitude Great read I read this in Japan [...]



  • I actually didn t know that I already reviewed this book once before here I guess it makes sense, because I only heard about this book one, two years ago, when this blog was already up But nevermind, I have new things to say Basically, after my first review, I lost the book I don t know how, I don t know when but it was lost for a period of time And then I found out I was going to Japan So before I went, I was at Kinokuniya using up all those vouchers people gave me and quite naturally, I bought [...]


  • Il monaco buddhista Kenk , avrebbe via via incollato le strisce di carta contenenti i singoli brani del libro sulle pareti della sua casa Dopo la sua morte, altri avrebbero messo insieme tali frammenti, in cui molti lettori dovevano trovare quello che forse il pi essenziale concentrato dello spirito giapponese.Makoto e dunque sentire, vivere immediatamente e attraverso i sensi le cose del mondo E una forma di estrinsecazione dell emotivita che, facendo perno sul cuore, ne manifesta i sentimenti [...]


  • Very interesting to read in combination with contemporary texts that follow a similar structure and method Endless text, forever with its movable parts.


  • A Buddhist monk, Yoshida Kenko wrote these essays reflections, really during the 14th century To while away the idle hours, seated the live long day before the ink slab, by jotting down without order or purpose whatever trifling thoughts pass through my mind, verily this is a queer and crazy thing to do his opening sentence reads Many of the reflections have little relevance or context for the present day reader, especially an American, at least as they re rendered in translation these are anecd [...]


  • If you re interested in historic Japanese Buddhist views on aesthetics, propriety, and the ideal life, you ll probably find this book worth looking at I discovered Kenk when I read The Art of the Personal Essay, which features a few excerpts from this work I would suspect Essays in Idleness is a mixed bag for typical western readers You have some passages that are categorically profound When I sit down in quiet meditation, the one emotion hardest to fight against is a longing in all things for t [...]


  • This is a miscellany It is a collection of various thoughts and things and events that the author finds interesting A journal basically, or a diary Some of it was uninteresting to me though, and did not translate at all Proper etiquette is discussed What constitutes refined behavior, and other matters He talks a lot about how this tradition has been performed during the time of this or that emperor Where the book shines is with regards to aesthetics Yoshida shows a taste on things which is roote [...]


  • I became aware of Essays in Idleness after reading an article in Smithsonian magazine about it As someone who studies and practices Zen, I found the book intriguing It s a primary document from an author who lived hundreds of years ago his collected thoughts and wisdom The series of short essays are an interesting mix, some very thoughtful, others quite humorous On the topic of Zen Buddhism, I can t say there was a much new here that I hadn t encountered before But the real charm of the book is [...]


  • Essays in Idleness is a collection of one man s observations of the world and his thoughts concerning life, morality, and art, as well as, other topics of importance Yoshida Kenko s wise, perceptive, and sometimes humorous musings offer a glimpse into the mind and heart of a buddhist scholar and poet who lived in fourteenth century Japan.His wisdom and compassion is underlined with humor and wit The collection is numbered from one to two hundred and fourty three to make for easy reading and loca [...]


  • Oh, how I wanted to love this book Existential, poetic musings by a 14th century Buddhist monk What s not to like, right Well, unfortunately this monk comes across a lot like a curmudgeon who s hung up on tradition, formality and overall reserve While I can see that it s a very historically important work, the parables, anecdotes and recommendations come across a bit flat, at least for this modern reader I think my favorite musing was the following, in which the humor was most likely accidental [...]


  • Medieval Japanese history, cultural criticism, Buddhist meditations, and personal musings coexist happily in this charming book In an essay on the pitfalls and pleasures of alcohol Kenko notes, In winter it is delightful to sit opposite an intimate friend in a small room, toasting something to eat over the fire, and to drink deeply together That sounds delightful indeed Though not all warm and fuzzy it was written in 1331, so expect some misogyny Essays in Idleness is a generally pleasant read F [...]


  • There are many nuggets of wisdom here, but the short pieces that make up this collection of reflections are too disjointed, too rooted in distant times and traditions, and some are too banal to merit the Sacred Book status with which Essays in Idleness was first represented to me Once I stopped expecting it to live up to its reputation, I enjoyed it as a fascinating diary by a sensitive soul living in interestingly difficult times.


  • Tsurezuregusa e H j ki Gli zuihitsu, quando la mano segue il pennello zibaldoni di pensieri, brandelli di ricordi, appunti, divagazioni del tutto buttati gi a caso youbookers rubriche let



  • A work of Japanese philosophy that I read on a trip to Japan I think Kenko s thinking can be seen in modern Japanese culture The pleasantest of all diversions is to sit alone under a lamp, a book spread out before you, and to make friends with people of a distant past you have never known.


  • This has been a disappointment I suppose I was looking for Buddhist insight, but what one gets seems unfocussed and all over the map Notes on historical importance of each section would have been helpful, instead of the too brief and diffuse Introduction.



  • Yoshida Kenko fu un monaco buddhista vissuto intorno al 1300 Il titolo originale di quest opera Appunti presi durante le ore di ozio si compone, infatti, di 243 singole riflessioni, di argomento e lunghezza diversi, che l autore riporta senza un particolare filo conduttore, cos con semplicit Spazia da aneddoti, pensieri personali, racconti storici, descrizioni naturalistiche Questo tipo di composizione in Giappone viene detta zuihitsu, ovvero segui il pennello in questo caso, significa lasciar v [...]


  • Durante d cadas, el bonzo Kenko fue rellenando peque as notas con sus ideas, ocurrencias, apuntes, que pegaba sin ning n orden en los muros de su choza A os despu s, un seguidor los recopil , orden y dio forma de libro, d ndole una literalidad que no ten a, incluso buscando un orden imposible Las ocurrencias, las peque as notas, que muchas veces parecen contradecirse, y que de ecl ctico cita a todos los sistemas religiosos de Jap n, muchos de ellos antag nicos, no se contradicen en una cosa en e [...]



  • This is one of the classics of Japanese literature, and I read it in college These days I am re reading the Japanese literature that I read in College and am particularly following a lot of the literature of traditional Japan, i.e pre meiji My recollection was that this was a dull book, full of judgmental observations by a self preoccupied guy that was not particularly likeable Reading it three decades later, I continue to dislike the author anyone who criticizes individuals who enjoy playing ga [...]


  • This books is a collection of essays written by a Japanese priest between 1330 and 1332 Some of the essays are merely two to three lines long, whereas others are a few pages The essays cover everything from morality to etiquette, and are often very thought provoking As a westerner, or maybe just as a modern woman, I found that I vehemently disagreed with a lot of Kenko s statements, but that made for interesting reading by reading them I was imbibing a point of view that is so startlingly diffe [...]


  • Kenko s Tsurezuregusa, or, Essays in Idleness, felt like a bit of a dull ache It was not something I read straight through, which is a little atypical of my reading habits though becoming common, I think Still, I m not sure an unabated immersion into the content would have been all that revelatory It really is just a bunch of thoughts at random Further, almost all the thoughts occur in short bursts apart from a dreadfully misogynist entry spanning about two pages.It s a little comforting to thi [...]


  • Being a collection of random thoughts and reflections from 14th century Japan.Observations that the carp is the only fish that can be properly carved in the emperor s presence The silliness of a dispute over whether the moon or the dew is charming when everything has its place Reflections on the shortness of life and the unexpected arrival of death How the late blooming plum and cherry trees are not so charming as the early ones how the plum blossom fragrance excels all others in bringing back [...]


  • This book is an amazing non linear experience Read each entry some have a logical story or anecdote that follows temporal order, some are just observations or the author s expression or a sudden whim or an idea in order and feel your brain enter a new zone of cognitive consciousness You will realize that a story following in logical order isn t necessary after all Besides, the ideas are very clear, the person holding the pen was a genius in his own quiet way Not thunder and lighting, wind and ra [...]


  • This is a collection of random essays by a man named Kenko who wrote it sometime during the 1300s This is considered to be a Japanese classic Unfortunately, I didn t really enjoy reading it While there are some insightful observations, the overall impression of the essays is that they are superficial and petty There are quite a few entries which almost seem to drop to the level of gossip as he talks about people and situations that the modern reader will have no knowledge about, and the points o [...]


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