Being Tranceported vs. Just Being: Ludic Reading and Zen Meditation

by Miller, Casey L.

Abstract (Summary)
This paper examines ludic reading, in which the reader “disappears” into a book, and Zen meditation, in which practitioners see the world as it is, giving rise to an opening of the heart. Interestingly, these two activities are sometimes interpreted as being at odds with each other: ludic reading involves a psychic journey to another time and place, while Zen meditation concerns itself most emphatically with the here and now. While from a certain angle this is irrefutably true, this paper takes the alternate tack of considering the congruencies inherent in absorbed reading and meditation. Looking more closely, both ludic reading and Zen meditation involve the dissolution of a strong sense of selfhood and are methods of experiencing the balm of nonduality. This conclusion is arrived at with the help of scholarly works, books on Buddhist practice, and most importantly with the first-hand reports of practitioners of deep reading and Zen meditation.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Brian Sturm

School:University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

School Location:USA - North Carolina

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:zen buddhism meditation literature paradoxes psychology of the marvelous


Date of Publication:04/11/2006

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