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Monday, June 3, 2019

Reading from Lotus Sutra and commenting

"Some present the leaders of men and their disciples with neat and lovely gardens abounding with fruits and beautiful flowers, to serve as places of daily recreation." 


The leader of men is, of course, Buddha. "...and their disciples with neat and lovely gardens abounding with fruits and beautiful flowers," like Church Creek, "to serve as places of daily recreation." This translation makes it look very picnic like, but it is not actually so. After they went begging, in mid day, when it was very hot, they rested for a while in someone's garden. It is very good to rest, to have something good which is offered by the owner of the house or garden, to put heavy things aside and rest under a tree. This is our custom, you know. In Japan we do this also. When it is very cold, we may be ushered into a warm room with a big charcoal fire, and they may serve mochi with sugar, and, sometimes, New Year's dishes. And for a while we can rest at that home. So this may be a kind of afternoon recreation, or afternoon rest. It does not mean resting and having a good time all day long. Rather, after the practice of begging, for a while, only when it was hot, they would rest at someone's home. They [in this sutra] could see Buddha and his disciples resting at some beautiful home. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-02-00-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC