Summary of White Collar Zen

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White Collar Zen book summary


8 Overall

8 Applicability

8 Innovation

8 Style


Building on Buddhist parables and using sources as diverse as St. Augustine and Alice in Wonderland, author Steven Heine offers a little book with big ideas, such as applying the Zen values of detachment and resilience to workplace dynamics. He tells stories to illustrate intricate, thoughtful ways to assess and react to various business scenarios and disputes. Then, with a relatively low dose of philosophical double-speak and, perhaps, a few too many oblique Eastern-sounding aphorisms, he encourages you to take the high ground. recommends this illuminating guide to those of a philosophical or spiritual bent. Heine’s knowledgeable explanation of the practical application of Zen ideas in business will help you remain philosophical in the face of workplace triumphs, puzzles or setbacks. While it is hard to see the Buddha inside a bull-headed rival, it may help to try.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to apply Zen techniques to business scenarios;
  • How to practice "elevation, purification and activation" so you can bounce back from setbacks; and
  • How to solve conflicts by having "Zen Encounters," not confrontations.

About the Author

Steven Heine is an expert on Zen Buddhism. He teaches religious studies and history at Miami’s Florida International University, where he is Director of Asian Studies. He holds workshops on adapting Zen values to business. He also wrote Buddhism in the Modern World and Opening a Mountain.



Zen in the Art of Business Leadership
Organizations encourage both cooperative teamwork and individual competition. The challenge is to preserve the benefits of both, transforming ego-driven conflicts into mutually beneficial pursuits, while retaining your spontaneous creativity and a ...

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