This is the What's New page for cuke.com
Our other two Zen sites: shunryusuzuki.com - all the transcripts, audio, film, photo archive ----- and ZMBM.net - for Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
Youtube Cuke Archives - Posts from here also appear on Facebook Cuke Archives
Core Books by and about Shunryu Suzuki -- People Index --  DC home --  DC Books
For other posts: personal, Saunters, environment, music, etc, go to Cuke nonZense Blog and cuke-annex
- donate
Search both cuke blog and cuke.com 
Search Blog Only - Search Cuke Only

Monday, September 30, 2019

Happiness

Student NN: When we are happy, do we suffer? Do we suffer when we are happy?
SR: Suffering exists actually in your happiness. And so if you seek for happiness, you know, what you will get will be the suffering, not happiness. So when you suffer, you should find out true happiness in your suffering. That is how you seek for true happiness. If you try to find out what is real suffering, you should seek for happiness [laughs, laughter]. You will find out what is suffering in its true sense. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Lafcadio Hearn on Ants

(Patrick) Lafcadio Hearn (1850-1904): essayist, journalist, and teacher. Son of an Irish father and Greek mother, Hearn settled in Japan in 1890 after living in America for several years where he was known for his writings about the New Orleans. In Japan he taught English and wrote extensively about the country, its myths, and its history. His essays became the West's most popular source of information about the recently “opened” Japan. - Wikipedia 

According to Shunryu Suzuki Hearn lived in Yaizu (and Matsue) where Shunryu Suzuki's Rinsoin temple is from. Here's a piece he wrote on ants.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Why?

Student MM: Docho Roshi, why are we you?
SR: Why-- oh-- you are me?
Student MM: Why are we you?
SR: Oh. There is no reason, you know. If you want to find out why, you should ask yourself, you know. [Laughter.]
Student MM: I am.
SR: Huh?
Student MM: I am.
SR: Okay. You are. So when you are truly me, you know, there is no problem. But when you say “why,” there may be something to think about [laughter]. So, there is nothing to think about between you and me.
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, September 27, 2019

Doubt

Student LL: Docho Roshi, what can you say to my doubt about whether my zazen is true zazen, my practice is true practice, and my effort is right effort-- that type of thing?

SR: Don't, you know, don't doubt your practice. Just sit with us. That is true practice. When they get up, you should get up and join our practice. That is good enough. Don't think more than that. Then your practice will be true practice. But if you think too much about your practice, you will lose your practice, you know.
When you cook something, if you think too much or taste so many times, you know: “Too salty? Add water.” Or “Not much salt.” Add salt -- water-- salt. You will lose the whole thing. [Laughter.] That is what you are doing. Okay. So don't think too much, or don't try too hard. Take your time. Okay?  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Photos from David Padwa

David Padwa sent some great photos with Ram Dass, Trungpa, Ginsberg, more.

Here's a page for them.

David Padwa page

L to R - Ram Dass, Allen Ginsberg, Chogyam Trungpa

That photo is taken at David's former Santa Fe home, then Richard Baker's, and now that of Joan Halifax and Upaya.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Bruce McAlister

Bruce McAlister died last week. There was a memorial service for friends and family in Oakland this past weekend and at Green Gulch during evening service. Apparently he was living in a sober house in Berkeley and the man that rents out rooms there found Bruce.

Bruce came to Zen Center in 1971 and lived at all three centers. He worked at Greens for many years. He was a sweet guy

L to R - Jerry Fuller, Niels Holm, Bruce McAlister at the City Center, 1979 (all three gone beyone). - photo by Barbara Wenger

Competition

Student KK: Docho Roshi, the top of the mountain is a place without competition. Why is there so much competition to get there?
SR: Because you forget your seat, you know, and trying to find out your seat there is so much competition. Each one sits on the top of his own mountain, you know. Each one of us are boss. [Laughs, laughter.] There is no competition.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Student JJ: Docho Roshi, how is a person with no self-perception aware of himself as being a person with no self-perception?

SR: No self-perception? Perception means the idea. No self-perception means no idea of self.

Student JJ: Then who is aware of being a person with no self-perception?

SR: Oh. Here again, “no” does not mean, you know, opposite of -- it is not just negation. It is strong affirmation: No. Usually “no” is opposite of “yes.” Affirmation. But in this case, “no” means like here [raps his stick once on a table or the floor]. Like this [raps] is “no.” When you say-- when you are making dispute “yes” [raps] or “no” [raps] -- someone who knows what it is actually-- NO! [raps loudly]. This kind of “no.” Both are not true. This is it [raps]. 
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Finger

Student II: Docho Roshi, if you have a finger you can point, if you have a voice you can growl.
SR: Yeah. But, you know, until I feel I have voice or finger, I cannot use it. Do you understand? When I want it, I may use it, you know, like this, but when I don't have it I cannot use it. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, September 23, 2019

Vow

Student HH: Docho Roshi, the bodhisattva's vow-- how to understand it and to follow it?
SR: Bodhisattva's vow is a vow which is not possible-- looks like so. But possible or not is not our point. We should continue our practice without being involved in the possibility or impossibility. Because we should do it, we should continue our way. That's all. That is bodhisattva way. In other words, our practice is based on our inmost nature. As we are human being, and sentient being, and son or daughter of Buddha, we should. That is bodhisattva's vow. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Rip Bruce McAlister

Laura Burges just sent me the sad news that Bruce McAlister has died. That's all I know now. More later. Farewell Bruce. As Laura wrote, "He was a good soul and a generous man."


Ears

Student GG: Docho Roshi, your words without sound may we hear without ears.
SR: Yes. You can hear it-- you should hear it without ears. It means, you know, you shouldn't stick to my word. You should accept it with your whole body, and with your whole practice. In your zazen you should accept what I am-- you should hear my lecture or what I say like you hear some bird singing in your zazen. You are boss, you know. Then you not hearing my words just by your ears but by your practice. Nothing happens to you [laughs]. Even though you hear something, that is the part of practice. So nothing happen beside your practice. That is how you hear my talk without your ear.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Steve Tipton poem for us


Shunryu Suzuki student, prolific writer and teacher - sociology and theology - Steve Tipton is a close old friend. But he just learned that Katrinka and I got married here in Sanur three years ago. So he sent a poem.  Thanks Steve!


Friends to Wed


At times two people waiting for each other

Make up a silent poem waiting to be song.

Clear-eyed words then pause, turn toward music

From an unseen source, an intuition longing

To incarnate airy knowledge and let it dance,

Set free to touch, to taste, by harmony itself

Heartfelt, and wound with scented symmetry

In what was wavy sonant space before this

Graceful measure brought senses to its sound.


ST
9/2019

Friday, September 20, 2019

Apple and Bamboo

Student FF: Roshi, when you eat an apple, form is emptiness. Give an example of “Emptiness is form.”

SR: When you say “emptiness,” that is not what emptiness means. Everything is changing. Emptiness is form. Form is emptiness.

Student FF: In its own home?

SR: Mm-hmm. You know, bamboo is bamboo, but it does not exist as a bamboo shoot always. It is growing. “Emptiness,” we say, but some concrete idea of bamboo shoot is empty. 
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Good Photo

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Hidden

Student EE: Docho Roshi, how is it that big mind can hide so well? 
SR: Because it is too big. Or because you are too near-sighted [Laughs].   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Meister Eckhart Quotes

Love Meister Eckhart who wrote these lines. He's got a beginner's mind quote. Another one says that theologans may quarel, but the mystics of the world speak the same language. 

Change

Student CC: Docho Roshi, if you and me and everyone here and everything around us is emptiness, can we see form in its change?

SR: Emptiness? Emptiness. Because we are changing, we say “emptiness.” “Empty.” Because nothing stays in its own home, because everything is changing. But usually, when I say “you” or “I,” we have already some idea which does not change. That kind of idea is empty. But if we understand everything in the state of change, that is true understanding.

Student CC: A change can't be form?

SR: Change, yeah. Changing-- moment after moment it changes. But even for a while, you know, you can see it-- some form. You can observe things in its particular form. That is form. But it exists in smallest particle of time. Next, you know, particle of time it will be some other thing. But on each moment it exists. That is also true. So form is emptiness, emptiness is form. 
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

teacher

Student BB: Docho Roshi, when you are our teacher, I feel like you have nothing to teach. But you stay in this world and suffer along with us. And I'd like to ask you why, but that's a very foolish question. And I-- I think that you just sit and wait for us.

SR: Sit and what?

Student BB: Sit here at Tassajara--

SR: Uh-huh.

Student BB: -- and wait for us--

SR: Uh-huh.

Student BB: -- and I'd like to thank you.

SR: Yeah. I don't want to be your teacher, you know, in its usual sense, because with your idea of teacher you cannot find your teacher in its true sense. That is why I say I am not your teacher always. All right? But we are actually practicing with you. That is my responsibility. 
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, September 16, 2019

The Han

Paul Discoe writes about the han, the sounding board traditionally used in Zen temples in Japan. 

Freeway

Student AA: Docho Roshi, I have no questions.

SR: No question? Oh, all right. I hope you can continue your practice in that way. If you have problem, you should think more when you have problem. But right now you are going on big freeway. Very good. 
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, September 14, 2019

More on the Arroyo Seco Waterfall Rescue Spot

Adding on to the post of Sept 11 about the family saved on the Arroyo Seco River

Image from this page. More there and lots more if search Arroyo Seco River California and click Images.

Communicated with Keith and Leslie at Jamesburg about this and they say that yes it's the same spot where I and others have walked and swam up to - sometimes hiking there from Tassajara. That makes me wonder about the NY Post article saying the waterfall is 40 feet high. Not the one we see from below. That's ten to fifteen feet as I remember it. So either that's an exaggeration or there's more falls above what we could see from below. As one approaches the falls, they can't be seen. One enters a roughly oval pool maybe 25 feet wide and fifteen feet across and the falls are not straight ahead but over to the left. The pool is surrounded by walls but maybe there's enough rock to sit or stand on over to the right. It's deeper where the falls come in. It's so unusual for there to be a lot of water this time of year. I always called it a National Geographic quality walk/swim. Some neat pools on the way where the creek/river narrows. Recall jumping from boulders into the pools on the way there. There are even larger boulders and pools further downstream from the Horse Bridge that tend to have more people frolicking. Would love to go back there. 



Friday, September 13, 2019

Tears

Student Z: Docho Roshi, hearing the stream, feeling it within, tears flow. What is the meaning?
SR: Because this kind of feeling, our practice is quite new to you. More and more you will feel deep joy in your practice. It does not mean your practice is wrong, or your attainment is not good. But if you feel in that way, with fear, that is because your experience is quite unfamiliar to you. That's all. So you will get accustomed to this practice more.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Nothing

Student Y: Docho Roshi, there is nothing to attain, and yet every morning we chant and we vow “to attain it.”

SR: [Laughs.]

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Family Saved at Arroyo Seco River

A message in a bottle got to hikers downstream.  - The family was stuck upstream. Tassajara Creek flows into Willow Creek right before they meet Arroyo Seco River near the Horse Bridge. This sounds exactly like the area where we used to go upstream to from the Horse Bridge. But that much water? Maybe another spot. But we'd go to a waterfall that wasn't so high - maybe ten feet, This NY Post article says the waterfall was forty feet so  it's somewhere else if that's true.  The one we went to came down into a deep pool. There was a rope on the right side. I never climbed it because there was too much water and I'm not a climber, but Niels Holm did. To get there you walk and swim upcreek half a mile or so and go through a place right before the waterfall that is maybe two yards wide with high walls on both sides. Have to swim there. I've written about that area a few times in the book I'm working on, Tassajara Stories. Here's a page for some of that and more on the Arroyo Seco.

Drowning

Student X: Docho Roshi, I am drowning in a great ocean. Will I wake up and discover this is a dream?

SR: How did you feel [laughs, laughter]?

Student X: I can't describe it.

SR: Which do you prefer: to be drowned in the ocean or safe on the land? Which is better? Which do you like better?

Student X: [Long pause.] I don't know. [Laughter.]
SR: “Do not know” is right. It is very difficult to decide, you know. If so, you should prefer to stay in bottomless ocean with some difficulty, because you have more possibility. If you are on the land in this way, there is not much hope. To have some chance to struggle for is very good, you know. You feel much better. Even if you have fear, soon you will manage it.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Beyond Word

Student W: Docho Roshi, question beyond word, word beyond question.

SR: Question. When you make improvement, you have question. So when you are improving yourself constantly, that question is more than question. So that is question beyond word. Word beyond question is even though you are making question, you know there is no other way to improve yourself [than to practice]. But you need some help or encouragement. So we discuss something between us, but actually the only way is improve ourself by ourselves. When you understand this point, your question is something more than word. And your word is something more than the question. In this way you should find yourself. Expressing by word how you feel, and trying to know what you feel, over and over you find yourself. Then to continue this kind of practice is our way. 
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, September 9, 2019

Accept

Student U: Docho Roshi, at the end of your lectures you always ask us if we understand. What does “understand” mean?
SR: “Did you accept it?” Actually what I mean is did you accept it? Good question.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Change

Student T: Docho Roshi, is enlightenment always changing?

SR: It will change always, but if you are enlightened, you will not be bothered by its change.
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Friday, September 6, 2019

No Question

Student R: Docho Roshi, this-- this mind has no real questions. Why is this?
SR: Yeah. No question, and without any question you are practicing our way. That is true practice. Don't worry about having no question.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Sufi Sam photo link fixed

Thanks AM for pointing out that the link in the post on Sufi Sam earlier was to the photo and not the page wherein one can see what names we know. Here's the correct link.

Sufi Sam

Thanks to Leon Mello for pointing out that the man on the right of this photo is Samuel L. Lewis, AKA Sufi Sam. This is photo SR0171from the Shunryu Suzuki photo archive. Here's a link to it there with what names we have. Sam's isn't there yet. It will be in a few days. (fixed that link. Thanks AM)

Suzuki met Sam Lewis in his early days in America. Lewis' name is one of the few entries in a date book he brought on the plane with him when he first flew in.  

Serve

Student Q: Docho Roshi, I serve you some ferns in your third bowl. Has anything special been given or anything particular been received? Is it possible to give and take?

SR: At mealtime. In third bowl?

Student Q: Third bowl.

SR: Uh-huh. Yeah.

Student Q: What has transpired between us then?

SR: Between us? I feel as if entire-- your entire being were served too -- that is not anymore food. 
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Warm

Student P: Docho Roshi, one step forward, one step back. How can I go where I don't want to go?

SR: When you don't want to go, there is no other way than to stop there. And while you are stopping, you should make your seat warm [laughs] to stay. That is the way.
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Fire

 Student O: Docho Roshi, how can I behave with my usual mind when my house is on fire?

SR: Mind-- your house? House? Excuse me.

Student O: On fire..

SR: On fire. [Laughs.] Why don't you get out of it? [Laughter.] Give up your house. You will find a good new house.  
-------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC

Monday, September 2, 2019

Practice Forever

Student N: Docho Roshi, you have taught us that everything changes, and that we can rely on nothing. From one day to the next, then, we cannot be sure of a place to practice or a teacher. If this is so, how can we continue our practice forever? 
SR: Wherever you go, you will find your teacher. The eyes you have right now, as long as you have your eyes, as long as you have ears to listen-- so Dogen Zenji says the color of the mountains and sound of the rivers are Shakyamuni Buddha's sermon. But you should be grateful for your teacher because he gave you-- he opened up your eyes and ears to see and to listen. Then your teacher is always with you. And you can continue your practice forever.    -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-04-23-B as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC