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Saturday, February 15, 2020

Kill

Student asks if it's okay from a great samurai to kill, "through and through, is it all right for him to kill?"
SR: Maybe [laughs]-- but that kind of thing will not happen to him [laughter]. He should have complete freedom, but there will be no need to use all his ability. In all of his ability, you know -- one phrase is enough. That is one of the ten powers. To save people just by one phrase or one blink of eye is enough.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, February 14, 2020

RIP Ruth Friend

Received the following message on Facebook:

Our beloved Ruth died on Saturday, February 8th. She was at home, peaceful and with her family. Please send her love and encouragement as her spirit transitions towards her next adventure.
She touched so many of our lives as a friend, mentor, mother, sister, partner and fun loving companion. We will be holding a memorial in the coming months, please feel free to reach out here for more information.
Now we carry on all that she instilled in us about love, about making the world a better place, about taking care of each other and about taking care of ourselves.

Boiling Heart

You know, Japanese people think anger is [laughs, laughter] [probably gestures]. His heart is boiling [laughs, laughter] and his face is, you know, as calm as water [laughs, laughter]. And this is not so good, you know [laughter]. If that is to be more kind to others or something, it may be all right, but if it is to keep his own prestige or something, it is not good [laughs, laughter]. It's much better to be natural. And to be natural some effort is necessary, some special kind of effort like “just to sit” without leaning like this or without too much tension.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Thunderstorm

Anger should be just anger, but unless you practice our way or unless you understand what “form is form” or “emptiness is emptiness” means, it is rather hard to be just angry like a thunderstorm [makes sound like thunder] [laughs]. Next moment nothing [laughs]. That is beautiful, you know. [Makes loud sound like thunder.] [Laughs, laughter.] That's all. This is very good for who can do that and for others too. If you could do so-- I wish I could... [makes sound like thunder] [laughs, laughter].  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Form

Student: What does “form is form” mean?

SR: Form is form-- form is form means, you know, form is emptiness, emptiness is form, and form is form, and emptiness is emptiness. There are four meanings in it. Before you say, in its true sense, “form is form,” you should get through “form is emptiness” and “emptiness form.” Or else “form is form” doesn't mean anything. 
  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Loving?

Student D: Well what about loving?

SR: Loving, yeah, also, you know, according to our understanding, love usually is very ego-centered idea. And we know it. But we make some excuse [laughs, laughter] for it. But we know pretty well, you know, why I love her. There are many “because, because, because” [laughs, laughter], and you don't “just love” anyone. 
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, February 10, 2020

Even more on Anger

Student: Isn't it possible to become so angry you forget about all that? Or just to become so foolish or so stupid or so ignorant you don't think about anything else?

SR: I don't think so for human being. If you are animal, they may-- they may be able to do it. But for us, that is not possible. 
-------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, February 8, 2020

More on "Just Angry"

The student who'd asked about being "just angry" as if that's the same as "just to sit," says, "But if you 'just do it,' how can you lose it?" 

There's more back and forth and then Suzuki says that anger builds and, "Y
ou will become more angry because you are not just you. That is that is why we say you cannot just to sit when you're angry. Anger or delusion or greed appear when you are not just you.-------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Just Angry

A student asks Suzuki, what about "just anger?" If we're just angry isn't that the same as "just to sit?" It goes on for a while back and forth and then Suzuki says, "You cannot be angry when you loose yourself." -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, February 6, 2020

You Yourself

Only when you can “just to sit” you can find out your own way, the best way for it. I am explaining it as if this is some good teaching, as if I know something, some secret. But it is not so. I am speaking about everyone's own way. That is why we put emphasis on “just to sit,” - because everyone has their own way and myriad of ways or dharmas. And moment after moment, you will find out your own way when you “just to sit,” when you are exactly you yourself. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

RIP John Nelson

John Nelson, our dear Zen Center brother just died. Condolences to Kim and their offspring, Bergen and Eric. Learned from Chris Fortin who read it in Bergen's FB post which I copy here.

It is with a very heavy heart I share that my father, John, took his last breath this morning. It was very peaceful, at my parents' home. My mom Kim, brother Eric, and I were by his side. He battled stage 4 colorectal cancer for the past 1.5 years and had a sudden turn for the worse just over 2 weeks ago. We are thankful for the good care he received in the hospital and then with home hospice, and forever grateful for the support we have received from family, friends and colleagues during this difficult time.

Some Idea

Because you are bound by some idea, you cannot find out your way for yourself. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Direction

But before you realize who you are, you know, it is not possible for you to go your own direction. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, February 3, 2020

clock

To have a kind of accurate understanding of ourself is very important. It is same thing to have a clock. To know it is ten past nine is very important. But actually, there is no such time, you know [laughs]. There is no ten past nine. When I am saying something [laughs], it will be eleven past ten [nine] [laughs]. I am pointing at something which is non-verbal. We say “just to sit,” but this “just to sit” is extra [laughs]. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Effort

Student A (Bill Shurtleff): It seems that on some evenings you emphasize the idea of non-attainment and that there is nothing to do except simply to give up and to just sit and to be whatever you are at each instant. And yet at other times, it seems that you speak of exerting your best effort. And when I think of exerting my best effort, it's in order to attain something. Why do you bother speaking about effort at all? Why not simply stay to the teaching of not trying to do anything at all?
SR: [Laughs.] Yeah. That is very good question. Even though I say do whatever you like, you are doing [laughs] something with some effort [laughs, laughter]. Can you do anything without any effort? No, you cannot. Anyway you have some problem. So it is better to have some good problem rather than bad one [laughs, laughter]. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, January 31, 2020

Mu

So those masters who understand Soto way, instead of “just to sit,” they may give you koan mu. What is mu? “Just to sit is mu” [laughs]. There is no difference. And this just to sit will be various kinds of koan, actually. So there may be thousands of koans for us, but if you can sit shikantaza, shikantaza includes various powers of practice. And this is the direct way to the enlightenment, or renunciation, or nirvana-- whatever you say. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, January 30, 2020

More on Robert Lytle

Here's a page for our dear dharma brother Robert Lytle who passed on to the next bardo earlier this month. If you want to add anything, just send it on. - DC

Robert and wife Brenda Grosz back in their Zen Center days. Maybe C. 1990?

Be Myself

This is not something you understand because I say so, you know. This is not teaching you believe in because Buddha says so. This is actual ultimate truth. The only way to attain renunciation without causing any problem for anyone is just to be myself. No problem whatsoever. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Just to Sit again

“Just to sit” is the most direct teaching. You cannot [laughs] say no or yes even, you cannot say anything about it - “just to sit” [laughs]. So we say “just to sit.” There is no more teaching.   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Just to Sit

We say “just to sit,” but this word "just" is A should be A, directly points to liberation from A. Because you try to be something else, you lose your reality. So I should be just me. Then, at the same time, I have liberation. I have enlightenment. I am not a ghost [laughs]. I exist here. I am Buddha himself. I am not a ghost. This is just to sit.    -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, January 27, 2020

Vanish

So to be just A like A-- only when we satisfy ourselves as A, you know-- as me, there is a chance to have realization or there is chance to vanish [laughs]. It is necessary to vanish [laughs]. If you don't, you are ghost [laughs] in your delusion. Something that exists should vanish. Is there something which doesn't vanish forever?   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Buddha

So there is no need to have bridge to the other shore. Other shore is other-shore buddha, this shore is this-shore buddha [laughs]. Just name is different but actually everything is Buddha. Bridge is ornamental Buddha, and this shore is also ornamental Buddha. The other shore is also ornamental Buddha.   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, January 24, 2020

The SFZC's Engage Wisdom Audio Archive

The SFZC's Engage Wisdom Audio Archive is formidble and well-presented. They're presenting dharma talks at that site from all the teachers who speak there. As part of this great project, and of particular interest to us, is the Suzuki Roshi Audio Archive. Peter Ford, my associate at Cuke, has transcribed a couple of entries from there that weren't in the archive (- from a set of tapes recently found at the City Center) and entered the new transcripts on the EW site and shunryusuzuki.com. The EW link is being placed now with each entry in the shunryusuzuki to join the link to the SFZC other Suzuki lecture site - https://suzukiroshi.sfzc.org/We're in touch with Charlie Wilson, a Zen student and owner of Sonic Zen Records in Berkeley who's doing the audio work, We've worked with him before. More on him later. Good going ZC!  

Practice

What is practice? When we were young, we used to discuss about what is bodhisattva's way to save others before we saved [laughs] ourselves. What does it mean? Is it possible to save others before we save ourselves? That kind of thing. And what is the goal of practice, and what is idea and what is the reality, reality in its ordinary sense? And reality cannot be, you know, the ideas. The practice will be the bridge from the reality to idea. This kind of discussion we had. But according to Dogen Zenji, practice is practice-- practice buddha, reality is the reality buddha, idea is idea buddha [laughs]. There is no problem [laughs, laughter]. When you practice, there is no Buddha or no human being. That which exists is just practice. When you say: “I am a human being,” it means human-being-buddha, another name of buddha. We understand in that way.   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Fighting

When you have no mind and body, you have no problem [laughs, laughter]. Because you say, “This is mind and this is body and body should not be the burden of the spirit,” or something like that. “Our mind should work hard to control our body” something like this. In this case, mind is not mind. Mind is delusion, and body is also delusion. And delusion and delusion is fighting.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Lose

When you just sit and when you appreciate your being fully in your sitting, that is to lose your mind and body - before you lose it.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

The ABCs of it

Renunciation could be attained when A is just A and B is just B. Because A tried to be a C or a D [laughs], there is, you know, a problem. Because A is just A and A is bound to be disappear, that is renunciation. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, January 20, 2020

RIP Robert Lytle

Just received this message from Meg Alexander.

Dear Friends,
I got word from Sara that Robert died around 3:30 am this morning. Marc and I were there yesterday for several hours, sitting with Brenda and Sara. He was peaceful slipping away.

Robert was devoted to Amida Buddha, and Sara was able to arrange a reassuring phone call with his Tibetan teacher Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche about a week ago.

Robert and Sara were particularly close, and she was by his side these last weeks. Brenda has cared for him these last difficult years with enormous patience and skill and deep practice.

With tears and with gratitude for buddha dharma and sangha, Meg

Diane DiPrima

Dominique DiPrima posted the folowing on Twitter

Visiting my mom (Diane DiPrima) was a huge inspiration to start off 2020! She’s very sick and in a nursing home but she is busy writing and editing books plus reading and studying...No excuses! It’s go time!!

Diane Di Prima cuke page

Have and Lose

Only when you do not seek for anything, you have it. So when you do not try to attain enlightenment, you have it, you know. Because you try to attain something you lose it. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Seek

As long as you seek for something, you will get just a shadow of the reality, not actual one. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, January 17, 2020

Something

Something which exists is bound to vanish. So something which you attained cannot be perpetual attainment. Something which you cannot figure out what it is will exist forever. Something which exists before everything appears will exist forever. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Vanish

That you are here means, you know, that you will vanish [laughs]. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Substitute

After practicing one or two months, if you don't think you have made some progress, you will give up in seeking for something good. But true religion cannot be obtained in that way. This kind of a way is the way to attain something in more materialistic sense. But true spiritual way cannot be like this. The way to work on spiritual things is quite different from the way to work on something which is more materialistic. Even though you talk about spiritual things, that is not actually spiritual. That is a kind of substitute for the [laughs] spiritual things.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

No Need

Whether you can realize it or attain enlightenment or not is minor problem. If you realize it or if you attain enlightenment, that's all the better. But even though you don't, there is no need to seek for some special teaching because the teaching is always here. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, January 13, 2020

Volunteer(s) Sought

Would like to have some transcripts off tape reviewed for accuracy.

Got a few new Suzuki Roshi lectures or lecture parts just transcribed from a batch of tapes found at the SFZC City Center - old reel to reel archival tapes transfered by Michael Katz when he first came from Lindesfarne Asso. on the East Coast. He was their AV guy. He ended up spending some years at ZC and becoming ZC's literary agent - and mine and has been all along Cuke Archives Advising Overlord. My associate here at Cuke Archives, Peter Ford, has transcribed them and wants someone to go over his work for accuracy.

Please just send an email to dchad @ cuke dot com or a message to David Reich Chadwick at Facebook. Thanks. - DC

That image is the famous "His Master's Voice"

No Time

Because you are seeking for something which can be attained, you will be discouraged. And you will give up the practice and you will try to find out some other teaching which is worthwhile to strive for. And in this way you will change your way from one to the other. And you will have no time to realize our true nature which is universal to everyone. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Already

Before you attain enlightenment, enlightenment is there [laughs]. That is true. It is not after you attain enlightenment, you know, it is not because you attained enlightenment that enlightenment appears. Because enlightenment is always there, so if you realize it that is enlightenment. If you think enlightenment is something, some particular thing which you can reach for or which you can attain, sometime you will be discouraged because you are seeking for it, and you think that is something which can be attained. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

How to find things on Cuke dot com

I frequently get emails from people asking a question and wondering if it's on cuke.com but they are intimidated by the site which is so sprawling and don't know how to find it. Here's an answer I sent today from someone who wanted to read about Mel Weitsman. I wrote:

Friday, January 10, 2020

No Results

Because you sit, or because you try to do something, there is trouble. If you do not understand what it is, you think nothing results. Or if you feel you can rely on something, the teaching means nothing. But before you try to rely on it, teaching exists, you have it. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Just to Sit

Even though we say “just sit,” to understand what does it mean is rather difficult, maybe. So that is why Dogen Zenji left us so many teachings to explain what is just to sit. But it does not mean his teaching is so difficult. When you sit, you know, without thinking or without expecting anything, and when you accept yourself as a buddha or as a tools of buddha or ornament of buddha, or if you understand everything is the unfolding of the absolute teaching or truth, or if you understand everything is a part of the great being--one whole being, when you reach this understanding, whatever we say, whatever we think, or whatever we see, that is the actual teaching of Buddha. And whatever we do, that is actual practice of the Buddha himself. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Suzuki's on a roll here

You know, when your practice is not good, you are a poor buddha [laughs]. If your practice is good, you are good Buddha. And poor and good is also independent buddha. Poor is buddha, and you are buddha, and good is buddha, and you are buddha too. For every word, or whatever you think, whatever you say, every word becomes buddha. Then there is no trouble [laughs]. I am buddha. If I say “I am buddha,” “I” is buddha, “am” is buddha, “b” is buddha, and “buddha” is of course buddha. Buddha, buddha, buddha [laughs, laughter]. That is how you say buddha, buddha, buddha, buddha [laughs, laughter]. There is no need to translate it into English [laughs, laughter]. There is no need to be bothered by fancy explanation of Buddhism [laughs]. If you say “buddha, buddha, buddha, buddha” [laughs], that is the way. That is shikantaza, you know: everything is buddha. So sitting is buddha, lying down is buddha, and whatever you say, you know, each word is buddha. Dogen understood in this way, so he said, “When it is cold, you should be a cold buddha. When it is hot, you should be a hot buddha.” -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Continuing from yesterday

That is “just to sit.” When it is hot, you should be hot buddha. When it is cold, you should be a cold buddha. But, you know, this is very direct understanding of the story. Actually it says when it is hot, you should kill hot. When it is cold, you should kill cold by practice.
But according to Dogen Zenji, you know, when it is cold you should be a cold buddha, and when it is hot you should be a hot buddha. But if you say “kill,” you know, kill is extra [laughs]. If you say “kill,” or “to attain enlightenment,” it is extra. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Monday, January 6, 2020

Shikantaza

Tonight, you know, I want to explain shikantaza. We say “just to sit.” What does it mean by just to sit? Some monk asked a Zen master, “It is very hot [laughs]. How is it possible to sit somewhere where it's not hot or cold?”

The master's answer was, “When it is hot, you should be hot buddha [laughs, laughter]. When it is cold, you should be a cold buddha [laughs].”

That is “just to sit.” When it is hot, you should be hot buddha. When it is cold, you should be a cold buddha. 
 -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Prescription

Zen school established without depending on any teaching, any particular teaching. So Zen student use various scriptures. We do not say this is the most important scripture or this is not so important. Whatever the teaching may be, that teaching will help at least someone. It may not be for all of them, but it will help someone. So it is like a medicine or prescription. For some patient some particular prescription is necessary, but we cannot say this is better prescription or this is not so good. If you use it in appropriate way, that is the test of prescription. We understand in this way. -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-24 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Friday, January 3, 2020

Continuing to talk with the guest

And we started to talk about cause and effect. And how it is karma, and it is also an eternal expression of each being or actual ornament of it. In this way we are free from karma. And yet we cannot get out of karma. [Laughs.] I was rather amazed we could communicate this kind of [laughs] things. She is from Redwood City and was sitting right there.  -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-21 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Crooked Cucumber is now in Japanese

Here's a cuke page for Magatta Kyuri

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Continuing conversation with guest

And next question she asked was, what then is karma? And I said karma, yeah, karma is if you do something it will leave a result something, you know. And that result will cause some activity, you know.   -------------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-07-21 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC 

Obituary for Bill Sterling

The obituary for Bill Sterling is pretty interesting and impressive.

Bill Sterling cuke page

A fairly recent photo of Bill with Yvonne







Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Happy New Year from DC and cuke.com!

This will be a cuke's 22nd year and a good year for graphics.

two-o-two-o --- II-0-II-O