Claude Anshin Thomas is an American Zen Buddhist monk and Vietnam War veteran. He is an international speaker, teacher and writer, and an advocate of non-violence. Thomas was brought to Buddhism by Vietnamese Zen Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, and was ordained in 1995 by Tetsugen Bernard Glassman of the Zen Peacemaker Order. Thomas teaches Buddhist meditation practice and dharma to the public through social projects, talks, and retreats. Since 1994, Thomas has walked 19,000 miles (31,000 km) on peace pilgrimages throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and the United States. While walking, Thomas carries no money, and begs for food and shelter in the mendicant monk tradition. He is the author of At Hell's Gate: A Soldier's Journey from War to Peace (2004) and founder of the Zaltho Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending violence.
Sōtō Zen or the Sōtō school is the largest of the three traditional sects of Zen in Japanese Buddhism.
It is the Japanese line of the Chinese Cáodòng school, which was founded during the Tang dynasty by Dòngshān Liánjiè.
It emphasizes Shikantaza, meditation with no objects, anchors, or content.
The meditator strives to be aware of the stream of thoughts, allowing them to arise and pass away without interference.
With about 14,000 temples, Sōtō .
According to tradition, Chan was introduced around 500 CE by Bodhidharma, an Indian monk teaching dhyāna.
Zen is deeply rooted in the teachings and doctrines of Mahāyāna Buddhism.
Mahayana Buddhism teaches śūnyatā, "emptiness", which is also emphasized by Zen.
But another important doctrine is the buddha-nature, the idea that all human beings have the possibility to awaken.
All living creatures are supposed to have the Buddha-nature, but don't realize this as long as they are not .
Although it is difficult to trace the precise moment when America first became aware of Zen as a distinct form of Buddhism, the visit of Soyen Shaku, a Japanese Zen monk, to Chicago during the World Parliament of Religions in 1893 is often pointed to as an event that enhanced the profile of Zen in the Western world.
It was during the late 1950s and the early 1960s that the number of Westerners other .