To read the latest blog post, see here

Now Available to Order

‘Hold The Rope, Carry Your Cross: Christianity and the Ten Bull Pictures of Zen’

Pictures by Carlos Siqueira, text by Andrew McAlister

With a foreword by Laurence Freeman OSB

‘The deep simplicity of the Bull Pictures engaged the mind and imagination of two Christian meditators and produced this rich and intriguing book.’ (Laurence Freeman)

AUD$25 each (includes postage and handling)

AUD$5 from every book sold goes to Bonnevaux (The World Community for Christian Meditation’s International Retreat Centre)

Paperback, 54 pages

Any questions, just email me at linesfrominbetween@gmail.com

At their best, spirituality, philosophy, and religion can help us to understand what it is to be human. Zen Buddhism and Christianity do this and do it in surprisingly similar ways. This book uses a re-imagining of Zen’s Ten Bull (or Ox-Herding) Pictures, seeing them with a Christian eye. In this, commonalities between Zen and Christianity are drawn out. These include the primacy of now, the challenge of the ego and awareness, emptiness and silence, compassion, as well as the importance of a practice like meditation.

Traditionally, within Zen, verse has been used to accompany the pictures. Here, new verse shapes a Christian approach. As well as this, an introduction and glossary provide explanation and context.

Zen challenges Christianity to its simple depths – a depth named in the introduction as a contemplative heart. At this heart, Christianity moves with Zen. Like Zen, the heart of Christianity is not a place or destination; it is a way of life forgetting itself. For the Christian, this way is love.  

Go to the Shop page to purchase your print copy

Print copies are also available via Medio Media, the publishing arm of the World Community for Christian Meditation (USD$18.50, postage included)

The ebook is also available via Vivid Publishing. Click here to order your copy (USD$6.99)

Have a look at the blog for a ‘sneak peek’ of one of the pictures and its verse: An Ox-Herding Update.

See also What is Christianity? (A Book Extract).


Welcome to Lines From Inbetween. Ten years ago this site began as a blog. While the blog still runs, the writing has expanded into other projects. You can view blog posts via the blog page in the menu. Posting to the blog page will continue to happen once or twice a month. The last ten years of blogging can be explored in the Archivies and Categories. New projects are advertised here on the home page.


My name is Andrew McAlister. You will find a little more about me in the About section in the menu. If you would like to contact me, you can do so via:

email: linesfrominbetween@gmail.com

Acknowledgement of Country

I respectfully acknowledge the Wiradyuri people who are the traditional custodians of the land from which this website is run. I pay my respects to their Elders — past, present and emerging — and acknowledge the vital role all First Nations Peoples continue to play within Australia. I acknowledge that this land has always been under their custodianship and that sovereignty was never ceded.

To find where you are on Country in Australia visit the AIATSIS map.