Recommended Reading List

* indicates highly recommended/required.

Books by TTZC Teachers

Top Gun Zen *

Barry Kaigen McMahon Roshi

In his book, Topgun Zen, Barry writes about how his practice of Zen influenced the many different avenues he's explored, from his work as a military fighter pilot to his personal activities and relationships.


Arte of Now: Practice of Immediacy in the Arts *

Nicolee Jikyo McMahon Roshi

75% of people think they are not living up to their creative potential. Arte of Now: Practice of Immediacy in the Arts™ will help you access your creative flow more consistently. Unbind and expand, unleash your innate ability to work freely and effectively!

Buy Arte of Now


A Lamp Unto Ourselves *

Nicolee Jikyo McMahon Roshi

A Lamp unto Ourselves is a selection of dharma talks by Nicolee Jikyo McMahon Roshi that explore both traditional and innovative ways to deepen meditation practice, a pioneering exploration of the relationship between student and teacher in Zen, and reflections on the life and death of Maezumi Roshi.

Purchase a copy of A Lamp Unto Ourselves for $15 + $6 shipping (U.S.) or $15 shipping (International).


Student and Teacher: A Zen Perspective *

Nicolee Jikyo McMahon Roshi

Student and Teacher: A Zen Perspective, is a thought-provoking essay by Nicolee Jikyo McMahon Roshi, which explores the positive potentialities as well as the possible hazards of being a student and/or a teacher of Zen.

Among the concerns it addresses:

  • What are the desires and needs that a student may hope to fulfill in the relationship?
  • How can projection play a positive role?
  • When the relationship doesn't seem to work, what insights may be gained and what can be done?
  • When it does work, what stages may the learning process go through, both for the student and the teacher?

Comments from readers:

"Student and Teacher: A Zen Perspective is one of the best things I have seen on the subject."
"Dear Nicolee Sensei, I have just read your wonderful booklet on the teacher-student relationship. Thank you so much for putting together such a masterful work."
"I wish that I had had something like 'Student and Teacher: A Zen Perspective' when I began Zen practice. It's really important for students."

From Nicolee Roshi's introduction:

As Americans we do not have a tradition of the Venerable Teacher, and we are only beginning to understand the subtleties and challenges involved in the student-teacher relationship within a spiritual setting. Yet this may become one of the most meaningful relationships of life, a deep learning experience, both for the student and teacher...

From the preface by John Gage Sensei:

Not only does it help us understand the nature of the student-teacher relationship, but it elucidates our entire practice as Zen students. As students we are on a path which potentially leads to transformation and liberation. Nicolee Sensei gives us a clear and concise description of how these potentials can be realized and what the processes involved require of both the student and the teacher. As such, what is presented here is as valuable for the advanced Zen student as it is for those setting foot on the path for the first time.

How to get a copy:

Download a PDF of Student and Teacher: A Zen Perspective.

Beginner Books
Intermediate Books
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Reference Books

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