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Friday, January 18, 2019

Great Sages

Student S: Docho Roshi, what is it that the great sages have said speaks when you are silent, yet is silent when you speak?

SR: Great sages always, incessantly are giving teaching, not only through his mouth, but also by his blinks of eyes, walking, sitting, lying down. Always he is showing the truth.

 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, January 17, 2019

No and Yes

Student R: No beginning, no end. No teacher, no student. No and yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, no, yes, yes, no, no, yes, yes, yes, no.

SR: That's right. 


Student R: Thank you very much.


SR: Don't forget you said “yes.” Do not forget that you said “yes” with “no.”

 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Cause

Student Q: Docho Roshi, what is the fundamental cause of the universe? 

SR: Cause of youness?

Student Q: Universe.

SR: Hmm?

Student Q: Universe.

SR: Universe. Ah, we do not discuss about it because there is no beginning or no end for the universe.

Student Q: Thank you very much.

DC Comment: What he means here is not that the particular physical universe has no beginning or end, but that there will always be samsara, form of some sort.

 ---------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Home

Student P: Docho Roshi, how or why has this come about that we can feel that we have lost our home and make the journey-- what we think is a journey to return to it? How-- why-- why is this? 

SR: Your feeling is opposite. You think you started your journey from home, but real home is here. Don't go wandering about to various countries.

Student P: I understand that, but I wonder why it is that we do that?

SR: Because you feel you started your journey from your home, which is not true home. It was not true home.

Student P: Thank you very much.

SR: You must feel as if you came back to your home right now. 


DC comment: Here's another traditional approach, that of the home-leaver. That was reserved for monks, But one's true home include's one's home with family.

 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, January 14, 2019

Dependency

Student O: Docho Roshi, as I accept you as my teacher more and more, I find more and more a growing dependency on you in that role, and I'm afraid of this. What can I do about it?

SR: There is no need to be afraid of being a part of me. Don't be afraid of me, and try to study hard.

Student O: But what happens if something happens to you, and you can't be our teacher any more?

SR: That cannot be happen. I am always with you forever. 

DC comment: This is the 2nd time in this shosan ceremony that Suzuki has said this sort of thing. It's a common way that spiritual teachers express themselves but not very common in Zen. Here, when he says "I," he's referring to the absolute and not to the person who is born and dies, or, to use his terminology, to big mind. This approach is reassuring and I think it's true, that what's real about him is the unborn, but it also seems to me to be conducive to misinterpretation, thinking that some being who's called Suzuki now will stay with you forever. Jesus in the Bible used that approach as in, "I am the way, the truth, and the light, and it was turned into deifying him as an individual by the vast majority of Christians, though I was fortunate to be raised on New Thought Christianity which is among a number of approaches that didn't do that.

 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Save

Student N: Docho Roshi, why did you and why did all the buddhas and patriarch try to teach and save others?

SR: Try to teach what?

Student N: Why did they teach and try to save others?

SR: Save others. Because all of them are part of them.

[DC note: Hmm. Maybe need to go back to the audio and see if maybe he said something else. See if you can find it.]


 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, January 11, 2019

Off for a while

I'm off to a Vipassana retreat at Brahmavihara Arama (BVA) in Singaraja regency. It's led by a nun, bhikkhuni we say here but she uses ayya instead. Ayya Santini. She's from Java and was ordained at BVA by the founder, Girirakkhito, from Bali. Here's an article on her and here's an interview: Reviving the Bhikkhuni Sangha in Indonesia. She's somewhat controversial because she's taking a lead where women are supposed to just follow. The other three Vipassana retreats I've done at BVA have been led by monks from Myanmar. And all practice a type of Vipassana meditation like the temple's founder that is compatible with zazen, emphasizing the hara though they don't use that word. 

Take care. DC

Shunryu Suzuki lecture excerpts will continue daily except Sunday.

Question

Student M: Docho Roshi, how can I stop to ask a question?


SR: Originally there is no need to ask a question. Your active mind bring about many questions. So the point is to practice our pure way. Then at least at that time you have no question.


 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Silent

Student L: Docho Roshi, when we are silent, what is the question?

SR: There is no question when you are silent, but when you are in activity, you will have innumerable questions. But questions should be answered on each moment-- in each moment.


 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Devotion

Student K: Docho Roshi, is there only one act of devotion?

SR: Excuse me? There is only-- I couldn't follow you.

Student K: Is there only one act of devotion?

SR: After devotion, devotion itself only one. And devotional life will be continued one after another incessantly.


 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Fear again

Student J: Docho Roshi, how is it possible to lose the fear of no nose, no mouth, no eyes, no world of eyes?
SR: Fear comes from your ego. So the way is to open up your mind so that there is no more ego.


 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, January 7, 2019

Questions

Student X (Ed Brown): Docho Roshi, I have many questions. But they seem to come and go, and they don't seem very important. And everyone seems to have worked very hard during sesshin.
SR: The question should not be about whether it is right or wrong. Right now, the most important thing is to find what is the most important thing. Still, your question is directed to wrong direction. You are asking yourself for others, which is not important. The most important thing is to be involved in what you do-- what you are doing now, without thinking “good” or “bad.” Stop asking-- stop thinking, and devote yourself to your kitchen work. Whatever people say, or whatever you yourself say, you should not be concerned about it.

 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Afraid

Student I: Docho Roshi, I'm afraid to ask you a question. Why?

SR: Because you see me as your teacher always. 


Student I: Thank you very much.

SR: Open your eyes and listen to me more.



 --------------------------------------------------  " Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, January 4, 2019

On Jack Weller

A piece Laura Burges wrote on Jack for the SFZC to post before he gave his talk there in October. But she gave it to Jack to look over and he never got back to her about it. Now it will be on the SFZC's Great Leap page though maybe in a different form. It's Edited by Mary Watson, David Chadwick, Andrew Main

Nothing

Student H: Docho Roshi, after four months' training and seven-day sesshin, what am I doing here?

SR: You are doing nothing.

Student H: Thank you very much.

 --------------------------------------------------  They all say "Thank you very much." Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Location

Student G: Docho Roshi, what place is this?

SR: What place is this?

Student G: Yes.

SR: This is Tassajara zendo. 
 -------------------------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Overcome

Student F: Docho Roshi, in our practice should we try to overcome our weakness or should we try to work through it?

SR: Why should you overcome? You should try to overcome when there is no big mind or no small mind.
 -------------------------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New Year!

2019!!! May you be happy, healthy, free from harm, love life, and awaken every minute of the coming year but not excluding the years to follow. 

Home

Student E: Docho Roshi, I have two questions. Where is home? What is true strength?
SR: When you start wondering about there is no home, there is no strength. But if you find your home in this moment at this place, you have enough strength to practice our way. And home is right here. -------------------------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki shosan ceremony - 67-12-07 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC