Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi

Biker Zen. A Trip Through Death, Sex, Drugs, and Spiritual Celebrity in Search of the American Dream
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi


How does a real-life Zen master help others through hard times when he’s dealing with pain of his own? How does he meditate when the world is crumbling around him? Is meditation a valid response or just another form of escapism? These are some of the questions Chuck Enkaku Johnzen Roshi, transmitted Soto Zen Master and former President of the Motorcycle club Pissed off Bastards of Boulder, contemplates in Biker Zen.

During a year that Genkaku spent giving talks and leading motorcycle retreats across the Southwest, his Harley was stolen, his Dharma Transmission was revoked, and he was kicked out from the American Zen Teachers Association. In writing about how he applied the Buddha’s teachings to his own real-life suffering, Genkaku Roshi shatters expectations, revealing that genuine Zen isn’t some esoteric pie-in-the-sky ultimate solution but an exceptionally practical way of dealing with whatever life dishes out.

Biker Zen. A Trip Through Death, Sex, Drugs, and Spiritual Celebrity in Search of the American Dream
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi
$29.95 (recommended price)
Paperback, 228 pages
Available in fine bookstores everywhere

* * *

Outlaw Zen. Confessions of an Unrepentant Zen Master
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi

In the second volume of his autobiography, notorious Zen master Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi tells the background of the story told in Biker Zen.

chuck2Convinced he doesn’t belong anywhere, the former president of a motorcycle gang travels from Colorado to California, searching desperately for peace of mind.

Disenchanted by biker culture and its values, Chuck Johnzen sets out to find truth and discovers the world of Soto Zen Buddhism. In this lyrical and affecting memoir, Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi describes in introspective detail and lyrical prose his years as a Buddhist monk, culminating in the solemn ceremony where he became a fully transmitted Zen Buddhist teacher.

Following an attempt to blow up the zendo of a competing Sangha, his Dharma Transmission was soon revoked, however. Finding himself on the street again, Genkaku begun a process of intensive soul-searching, resulting in a deep re-connection with his biker past. In 2010, he founded the independent “1% Sangha”, a wild bunch of outlaws and wayward monks searching for satori while riding the roads of the American Southwest. Pulling no punches, Genkaku also tells the story of how he was kicked out from the American Zen Teachers Association, described by him as a “complete loony bin”.

Whether you practice zazen or have never meditated, Outlaw Zen is a reading experience you won’t soon forget — a fascinating glimpse into a unique culture of freedom that recognizes only one commandment: the word of the Roshi

Outlaw Zen, Confessions of an Unrepentant Zen Master
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi
$29.95 (recommended price)
Paperback, 248 pages
Available Fall 2013

* * *

Sittin’ Steady, Livin’ Free. Hell-Raising Zen Stories
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi

An unconventional Zen Master tells it all …

chuck3Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi has become the number-one spokesman for the Zen experience. His acclaimed memoirs, told in Biker Zen and Outlaw Zen, is an exhilarating history of his adventures with the world’s most notorious Buddhist sangha. Now he brings us rousing, moving, and wildly entertaining true stories of his renegade brothers  in the relentless pursuit of satori, individuality, and spiritual chicks.

And what stories he has to tell — freewheeling, bare-knuckle tales of brawls and battles, brotherhood, breathtaking adventures, crazy quests, and the inevitable classic scrapes with puritan American values. The most colorful legends and unforgettable characters of zendo lore come alive in this book. In addition, celebrities like Genpo Roshi, Eido Roshi, and Brad Warner thunder through these pages in a sensational collection of rebel tales that runs the gamut from poignant and inspiring to thrilling and utterly outrageous.

Sittin’ Steady, Livin’ Free. Hell-Raising Zen Stories
by Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi
$29.95 (recommended price)
Paperback, 248 pages
Available Fall 2013


9 thoughts on “Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi

  1. Pingback: An unconventional Zen Master’s uncensored story | tuttejiorg

  2. Any idea where I can purchase “Biker Zen” – I’d love to buy a copy, but can’t find it anywhere – any suggestions where to look online or in SF or the Bay Area? Great blog post BTW!

    • This whole website is a joke, Jack. Readers are supposed to pride themselves of “getting it” as ironic, postmodern…well, choose your preferred gobbledygook. It doesn’t matter, does it? That’s how one is supposed to be made to feel by all this. The whole stinking pile is just ego self-gratification. The creator of this site uses some real-world people’s names to give it a sheen of authenticity. Then those real-world folks are obliged to either go along with the joke or look like spoil-sports. Devilish trap, that. So, if you’re wondering what my advice is? Wash your hands of this whole damned thing. You won’t find anything worthwhile here. It’s a trick and a trap.

      • Michael,
        Thanks for getting caught in this stinking pile of ego self-gratification, and showing our readers what kind of self-opinionated ass you are. (That, by the way, is the purpose of this site.)

  3. Pingback: Adam Tebbe Interviews Chuck Genkaku Johnzen Roshi | tuttejiorg

  4. Tutteji. You are obviously running out of real-world examples. Why else would you write such a blatantly cliched and thoughtless “criticism” under the guise of one “MICHAEL LaTORRA”? “Tor” as in German for “fool.” Right? You’re getting soft, Master..

      • Note to confused readers: The two comments above are so-called jokes, examples of what in stinking postmodernist, elitist, and possibly communist, jargon is called “irony”. Unfortunately, the message from MICHAEL LaTORRA seems to be perfectly sincere.

  5. Pingback: Embrace, Deflect, Evade: An X-Buddhist Strategy Against Criticism « Speculative Non-Buddhism

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