For some time I have been interested in the ten pictures called the Ten Ox-Herding Pictures, or the Ten Bull Pictures. These pictures came to be used in Zen training in Japan during the fifteenth century. They date back to drawings by a twelfth century Zen master named Kakuan. They are still in use today.
The Ten Bulls speak of a spiritual and human journey common to the depths all faiths. Christianity is no exception here. The series of Ten Bull pictures on this blog, each with a brief reflection, is an attempt to bring the wisdom of Zen into dialogue with the wisdom of Christinaity.
I have relied heavily on two books as a guide for this series: Gentling the Bull by The Venerable Myokyo-ni, and Silent Music by William Johnston. You can find these books by scrolling down this blog until you see a heading on the right hand side: ‘Books of Interest’. Information about these two books, as well as links to buy them, are avalable there.
The pictures that I use here I acquired from the internet using a general search for ‘the Ten Bulls pictures’. I would be more than happy to attribute them to the artist, if I knew who they were.