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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Zazen

Student E: From time to time you emphasize a different recommendation for how we practice or do zazen. Breathing, watching our breath, or concentrating our power in our hara, or last night you referred to shikantaza.

SR: Mm-hmm.

Student E: When you change your recommendations, do you think that we as a group should change our way of practicing according to what you say in the lecture? Or just those who feel it?
SR: Yeah, that is good question [laughs, laughter]. You know, the point is, whatever practice you do, practice your way without expecting anything. Just to be yourself you practice zazen. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, April 29, 2019

Help You

Student D: This is-- I'm not sure how to put the question, but last night you said that when we find the true power of zazen we wouldn't have trouble affecting what we want to affect, or it will just come naturally. And then at other times you've said that zazen doesn't help us or doesn't change us a bit.

SR: [Laughing.] Yeah. Yeah. Doesn't help. [Laughter.] Zazen doesn't help, you know. But your true nature will help. If you, you know, practice zazen because zazen will help you, it will not help you [laughs] because that is not true zazen. 
 --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Substantial

First of all, when you want to be a Buddhist, you should understand emptiness, or you should give up substantial viewpoint of life. But you should come back to the substantial explanation of the world. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, April 26, 2019

Wildflower

I am very grateful for you to make various offering to the altar. Sometime, you know, wildflower, sometime stone, or candlestick. This is true offering I think. And this is the true practice, offering of practice, our practice, which should be continuously practiced. And when we practice our way in this way, there is buddha and we are also buddha. In this way, we should understand this bodhisattva's vows. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Offering

If you understand this kind of spirit of making offering, as Dogen Zenji says, offering should be like to offer the flower which blooms in remote mountain to the Buddha. In spring, in Japan we have cherry blossom, and to offer that cherry blossom to the Buddha is kuyo, is offered to make offering. This evening, you know, you saw big ring [laughs] around the moon. To make offering to Buddha with a big ring is kuyo. To hear the sound of the river should be kuyo according to Dogen Zenji. So to have deeper understanding instead of shallow, substantial understanding is to make a perfect offering.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Things Going

If you understand how things are going completely, you should continue your practice as things are going. This is the point of practice.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Meaning

We practice our way to solemnize this dharma world. Without practice things don't mean anything. Because of our practice, things come to have some meaning. Without practice there is nothing. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, April 22, 2019

An Easter Letter

from Steve Frost, a Catholic Priest whose been featured on cuke a number of times through the years.

bow vow

Usually when you bow to Buddha you look like you are respecting Buddha, but actually why you bow to Buddha is to continue your practice. That is the point. Without having any particular idea or any particular substantial idea or materialistic idea, just to live in bodhisattva's vow is the point. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Referring to yesterday's post


When we have this understanding, we have no more idea of self. Instead of having idea of self, we will see the Buddha in each world. So this world, if you say is it great, this world is as great as the cosmos. If you say this world is small, you will see innumerable worlds even in a speck of dust. In this way we have to understand our world, and in this way we have to practice our way. So accordingly, this bodhisattva's practice is always based on this understanding. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, April 19, 2019

Talking about the Kegon Sutra in this week's posts

We don't know how many buddhas here we have to bow to. It means that when we realize that in the smallest element there are innumerable elements. So each element consists of innumerable elements. So we don't know what is the ultimate existence. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Exist

Strictly speaking, everything does not exist, but in the smallest particle of time things exist. Or as a smallest particle of element things exist. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Changing

Things are dependent with each other, and things are changing always. That things chang means it is not independent being. So originally things do not exist having some special self-nature. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Dependent

We think everything exists as it is and everything is independent from the rest of the things, but actually everything is dependent with each other. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, April 15, 2019

Harmony

Through things you will understand the theory or truth on which everything a based. This much is understood by almost everyone, but perfect harmony between each thing -- this is rather hard to understand or rather hard to accept unless you study Buddhist thought more.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-12 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Home

Without expecting anything, you can enjoy things outside of your home. Sometime you can -- if it is something good, you can take it to your home [laughs]. But home is the most important [laughs] thing, not something which you have brought. That is zazen. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

First Review!

Thanks Jeanne DiPrima for the excellent Amazon customer review of A Brief History of Tassajara. I don't ask people to do that or promote much and so forth as I'm usually focused on creating and sharing new material. - dc

Friday, April 12, 2019

Nothing

Actually there is nothing, you know [laughs], including you. If so, we should just sit. Then you will be, you know-- you will be the one including everything. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Forget Substantial

Student: When you say that Manjushri takes care of our practice should we pray to him?

SR: [Laughs.] That is your understanding based on the substantial understanding, you know. Forget all about any substantial idea. I realize this point is very, very important for people. This is why we cannot understand Buddhism or our way. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC [Try thinking of "substantial understanding" as "literal understanding"]

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Just Sit

If you want to understand it, just sit [laughs] without asking question. In your sitting, you should not sit for anything. Just sit.   --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Accept

When I say oneness of enlightenment and your everyday life, that may be difficult to accept, but it is so. Because it is difficult to accept it, you sit.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, April 8, 2019

Substance

You are not accustomed to living in this form, your own home. So you are wandering about trying to find your home. “Where is my home?” You are right in your home and you are seeking for a home with a substantial idea. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC [Looking for some substance whereas your home is not substantial.]

Sam Bhogakaya

Sambhogakaya Buddha which is rewarded body, which is one with everyday life, which is nothing but each being, means to, you know, to realize the buddha through-- or you may say to express your idea of buddha through your way of practice or your everyday life. That is Sambhogakaya-- idea of Sambhogakaya.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC [Didn't edit this one at all]

Saturday, April 6, 2019

One

“Whether or not I understand him, there is buddha,” you may say. Or, “Even though I don't practice zazen I am buddha. So there may not be no need to practice zazen.” But when you say so, your understanding is quite different from our understanding, which is practice and buddha is one.  --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, April 5, 2019

Substantial

You may say, “Even though I don't understand true meaning of life, I am buddha.” If when you say so, your understanding is based on some substantial understanding of some buddha, some special thing... But buddha is not some substantial being. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Life

That you have true understanding of practice means that you have the true meaning of everyday life. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

buddha

We say, without practice there is no buddha. It means practice is buddha. When you practice there is buddha. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Scripture

When you can read scriptures you can enjoy your life whatever you do. To read scripture is nothing but to appreciate, to enjoy. That is why we recite ten names of Buddha when we have meals. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, April 1, 2019

Life Force

When we practice our way, we give up the aspect of existence and aspect of nonexistence. We give up all those aspects and practice our way, resuming in a fundamental life act or life force which is not intellectual or emotional. --------------------------------------------------  Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-01-11B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

A Dubious Quote attributed to Shunryu Suzuki

So far I've put this on the Dubious Quotes page with the note below. If you have any info on it's source and if he actually said it or not, I'd like to know. Thanks - dc

As for this quote, in a number of places on the Internet, it's not from any source I have or I'd be using it. It does have a meaning that is something he repeatedly said but it seems too cute for him, though not impossible he said it to someone once. Let me know if you know better than I do. More likely, if it has any authenticity, it's a very liberal paraphrase. He'd use serious as something not to be too much and something as something necessary for practice, just depended on what type. The non emotional, unattached type is the good one. It's really nothing, not adding something extra to ones effortless effort. - thanks Danny Parker

If I'm right about it, then it's appropriate for April Fools day. -dc