Lack & Transcendence

By David R. Loy,

Book cover of Lack & Transcendence: The Problem of Death and Life in Psychotherapy, Existentialism, and Buddhism

Book description

Loy draws from giants of psychotherapy and existentialism, from Nietzsche to Kierkegaard to Sartre, to explore the fundamental issues of life, death, and what motivates us.

Whatever the differences in their methods and goals, psychotherapy, existentialism, and Buddhism are all concerned with the same fundamental issues of life and death—and…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Lack & Transcendence as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Loy's path has been unusual. He is an American who studied Zen in Hawaii and is now a Zen teacher in Japan and a professor at a Japanese University. In this book, he adds existentialism to his study of Buddhism and psychotherapy. His thinking was key for me on my own path of becoming a psychologist. The main lesson I took from him is the importance of how the feeling of lack affects our understanding of what death and nothingness mean to us. He also discusses the meaning of compassion in Buddhism, something that informed my own understanding of how…

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