Sermons of a Buddhist Abbot
[Zen For Americans]
by Soyen Shaku
translated by Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki
This is a book of essays by a Zen Buddhist Abbot who visited the United States in 1905-6, translated by another figure who was instrumental in introducing Buddhism to the West, Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki. Originally titled Sermons of a Buddhist Abbot, it has been reprinted in numerous editions as Zen for Americans and is currently in print under that title.
The book includes a translation of The Sutra of Forty-Two Chapters, which was the first Buddhist document translated into Chinese, and which had a huge influence on the development of Zen. Many of the essays are introductions to various Buddhist topics for Christians, and all of them are ideal for a general audience. The two essays which close out the book which discuss the Buddhist attitude towards war and peace, and are of historical interest because they were referenced by Leo Tolstoy in his anti-war declaration.