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Zen and Material Culture$
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Pamela Winfield and Steven Heine

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190469290

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190469290.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 20 September 2021

Zen Sells Zen Things

Zen Sells Zen Things

Meditation Supply, Right Livelihood, and Buddhist Retail*

Chapter:
(p.257) 9 Zen Sells Zen Things
Source:
Zen and Material Culture
Author(s):

Gregory P. A. Levine

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190469290.003.0009

This chapter explores Japanese Zen material culture and materialism in a contemporary American monastic context. It examines the adaptation of mainstream business operations by The Monastery Store at Zen Mountain Monastery, established by John Daido Loori near Woodstock, New York, in 1980. It provides a visual and critical analysis of The Monastery Store’s mail-order catalogue, website, and brick-and-mortar facility on the monastery grounds, and it contrasts “retail Zen” (i.e., the mass marketing of vaguely Zen-like articles by multinational distribution chains for maximum profit) and “Zen retail” (i.e., the selective sale of sustainably sourced Zen items by nonprofit Zen monasteries to support adherents’ practice). In so doing, this analysis contributes to our understanding of Buddhist economics, practice, ethics, and other Zen matters.

Keywords:   Zen in America, Zen Mountain Monastery, e-commerce, Zen retail, right consumption

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