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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Farewell Richard O. Moore

Just learned that Richard Moore passed on. He was 95 and living in the Redwoods Retirement Home in Mill Valley, CA. Visited him with Katrinka there before leaving for Asia in 2013. He was doing well though loosing his eyesight. Published another book of poetry this year - Particulars of PlaceUsed to visit with Richard and his wife Ruth at their home in Muir Beach near Green Gulch and later at their home far up north. Richard was a founder of KPFA Radio and KQED TV in the SF Bay area. He never seemed interested in Zen, but he was responsible for putting Alan Watts on the air. He had mixed feelings about Watts - who lived nearby - and on several occasions I emphasized to Richard what a great gift that was to bring Watts to so many people. Read more about him on Wikipedia. - DC

Post on his memorial

Civil Rights etc and Practice

Student I: What relationship does anyone who has studied Buddhism have to organizations that work against killing such as peace organizations or civil rights organizations?

Ants again

From my vantage point at the pool ladder, watched red ants climbing and descending the bare slim trunk of a tropical plant - perfectly placed to the left side so their bodies were in relief against a green background. Glad they're there and not on our porch with the blacks - as the blacks don't bite and the reds do. As with all the ants I know, they stop briefly to greet each other in passing. What perfect social beings they are.  

Monday, March 30, 2015

Universal Advice for Meditation

"Be still and know that I am God..."

Psalm 46:10

Father Steve Frost sent that in an email announcing his paintings in the Pastoral Center of Christ Cathedral, Garden Grove, California- Diocese of Orange. More on this at this website, White Light Missals

Fear of Death

Student: Can you explain the connection between death or fear of death and zazen?

Kissing in Public

You shouldn't kiss in public here really. It's not good manners but it's not against the law like in India.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Nothing Sunday

Decided to institute a Sunday off policy with a few exceptions, this post being one of them. As ever - DC

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Walter Van Oel

Katrinka and I visited with artist Walter Van Oel and his wife LĂ©onie yesterday at their home in Sanur. Link to page image came from.

His art is amazing - the colors - ah! There are many links to images of Walter's art and videos on YouTube.

Here is a brief video interview with Walter with some of his art and a snippet of Desmond Tutu visiting there.

I don't think I've ever been in a more impressive home. He designed it in a matter of minutes. We entered onto a vast open space with a floor of fine white gravel, almost sand. 23 meters across (meter is 3.3ft), maybe half that wide - the peak of the ceiling is 13 meters, the lower height 7 - with a large but less large space to the left. His art on the walls - large, vibrant colors.

Exchange on Communication between Suzuki and Students

Student F: This way of helping each other with words and trying to convey meaning is very difficult. It seems to be very important to be able to communicate with another person. I say to myself, “What is preventing understanding when the words are being correctly used?” What is preventing, what is not listening, or what is the disturbance? What is preventing the penetration of this meaning?

SR: You yourself prevent it [laughs].

Friday, March 27, 2015

Leaving Doors Open

"In zazen leave your front door and your back door open. Let thoughts come and go. Just don't serve them tea."

From Crooked Cucumber, chapter 15.


It's hot today. It's been hot since Nyepi and the Bali Hindu Saka New Year which started last Sunday. Not too too hot and nicely drier and it hasn't been getting hotter than usual like many parts of the world. Guess we're out of rainy season - I think - there was some distant thunder yesterday. Nyepi is supposed to be the end of the rainy season so it looks like the weather is following orders. 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Fran Thompson Memorial

A memorial service for Fran Thompson will be held this Saturday, March 28th, in Mill Valley. Details.

Frances Thompson cuke page

On Human Beings Sinking Low - heavy exchange

Student C: What is that person which is not a human being?

SR: Hmm?

DC Remembers Serial Killers Around the ZC

The famed Zebra Killer who, along with three accomplices, killed 14 or 16 (Wikipedia) people and wounded seven, died earlier this month. Details here.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

To Help Others

And in Zen at least, "to help others" means - we do not take it in dualistic sense. To help others means to think of others as a part of you. Not you yourself. You think to help others is to help someone, some imperfect person helps people. But when we say to help others in our sense, it means to consider people a part of you. It is like your hands or your body.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-30-C as found on - Edited by DC 

RIP Lee Kuan Yew - Father of Singapore

Lee Kuan Yew, the father of Singapore has died and Asia News is non stop no ads about him and this. He is to many the great figure of modern Asian non commie history.

Freedom Songs XI - NY & NO

Freedom Songs - my Journey through 1964 - part XI - News York and Orleans

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Secret

Moment after moment, to watch your breathing, to watch your posture is to dwell on your true nature. There is no secret beside this point.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-30-B as found on - Edited by DC 

Water Filtration

We just bought a water filter setup. Nazava Saringan Air (filter water - I love how "water" is "air" in Indonesian. I want them to change the word for air which is udara to "water.")

California Water Crisis

To Solve California’s Water Crisis, We Must Change the Nation’s Food System - thanks Fisher

Monday, March 23, 2015

Analyzing the Past

Science or philosophy is like a dissection. It is possible to analyze what we did after we did something but it is already a dead corpse [laughs] -- dead corpse of our practice. So even though you analyze what you have done, it will not work. It will not help you so much. It is nearly the same as to count your lost child's age [laughs]. So we cannot help counting our lost boy's age. It is our nature, but actually it will not help us so much.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-30-B as found on - Edited by DC 

Burying Trash on the Beach

When I was at the beach watching the Bali Hindu Saka New Year sunrise yesterday, noticed a line of trash at the high tide mark, not a lot but more than usual from the pre Nyepi celebrations. [See yesterday's post for more on this] Then saw some women in uniforms approaching.

Save the Planet? - today's environmental topic

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Don't be bothered by your own mind.

Don't be bothered by your own mind.

This is listed as a separate lecture, or entry, 65-07-30-A as found on - Not edited by DC. It's something Suzuki said in the morning before breakfast during a sesshin. 

Buddha Dharma Comes to the West

Buddha Dharma Comes to the West on Gregory Wonderwheel's blog. There's a good discussion about this on Gregory's FB page - March 19th.

Two Statues from the Island of Milo

Sent this idea to Nathan Strait and he zipped this out. Met him at Taigen's Ancient Dragon Zen Gate in Chicago. Check out Nathan's website. He's been a graphic artist for the Field Museum there. - DC

Ogoh Ogoh and Nyepi were great

We loved the demon statues of Ogoh Ogoh.

Friday, March 20, 2015

No Teaching

Here we have no teaching. That is our ideal world. That is our heaven, nirvana, where there is no teaching.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-C as found on - Edited by DC

No Posts Tomorrow because of Nyepi

That's right. Nothing from cuke tomorrow. See note below just sent to a friend who wrote he pictured me in a sarong dancing to gamelan.

Cherry Wood

Cherry Wood - a DC Short Story

Thursday, March 19, 2015


Student: Is there any real difference between our waking state and our dream state?

Tunnel to the Other Side of the Earth.

This is fun and easy. We here in Bali would come out somewhere in Venezuela whereas you folks in the States would mainly end up in the Indian Ocean.

Opportunities for Practice

I don't like bar soap. Prefer soap in an unbreakable bottle.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


Anger is one of the strongest, you know, evil desires: greediness and anger and ignorance. But all those come from ignorance. When we are ignorant of our true nature, we become angry. It is want of subtle understanding. That is anger.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-C as found on - Edited by DC

PDF of Early Draft of ZMBM link fixed

Now it's right.

PDF of part one of an early draft of "Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation mentioned on March 14th - see below - is now reduced in size, easier to load, and with OCR for searching. Thanks Peter Ford.

Pre Nyepi Celebrations

Getting ready to go to the beach for the first day of pre Nyepi celebrations.

See if this Google image page for that works for you

Read about Nyepi.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Don't Kill, even though you Can't

From a Q and A 

SR: When we kill-- try to kill, there is a mistake, you know, in understanding our life. Because we do not know it is impossible to kill - so we try to kill.

Nyepi coming up!

Excited about Nyepi this weekend! (Like getting excited about an upcoming sesshin - this is all from a friend's Facebook Page and she got it from somewhere else). Balinese Nyepi day or “Day of Silence” is an important religious event in Balinese Hindu culture and marks the celebration of the New Year in the Hindu Lunar calendar.

Two Poems Presented Two Ways

It's said there are more poets than readers of poetry these days. We're all in such a hurry and who has time to reflect on the deep sentiments contained in such inspired creations. I asked son Kelly if he noticed an underlying theme in the Valentine's Day poem for Katrinka and he said no. He was probably trimming a tree and didn't have time to let the spirit of the message penetrate. So I did some work on it and feature it here again along with a bonus poem. So please enjoy these two poems presented two ways. 

Monday, March 16, 2015

PDF of Early Draft of ZMBM reduced in size - now fixed

PDF of part one of an early draft of "Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation mentioned on March 14th - see below - is now reduced in size, easier to load, and with OCR for searching. Thanks Peter Ford.

Truth on your Back

If you don't work hard, it will be too late. You must not be always too late [laughs, laughter] or too fast [hurried]. Truth is here, you know, right here. You should not be too late or too fast. Right here. It is written on your back [laughing, laughter]. All the scriptures is written on your back and front.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-B as found on - Edited by DC  

More from Peter on that Suzuki quote

Peter adds more exciting details to his remarks concerning the Suzuki quote about him reading ZMBM to see what his students' understanding is - on Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev with DC comments, Just go down a bit to 3-`6-15 for his new comment which led to me (DC) correcting the presentation in his interview to

Suzuki Roshi said it wasn’t his book. He said "It’s interesting for me to look at Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind to see how students understood him."


There was a spider in the bathroom about two inches across, long legs.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Understanding Buddha Nature

I think you are trying to figure out what is buddha-nature. Is that so? Because I do not explain what it is, but I just point it out: “This is buddha-nature.” But I didn't say what it is. That is buddha-nature, you know. Buddha-nature is impossible to understand in a psychological way or a philosophical way or a scientific way. You cannot understand in this way.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-B as found on - Edited by DC 

Peter says Suzuki said it

Regardless of how it reads in his interview (as if Peter Schneider had said it and I'd remembered it wrong as something Suzuki had said), Peter emailed me that yes Suzuki did say to him that he read ZMBM to see what his students understanding was. Have now sent Peter the whole exchange between Victor and me to see what he says. Here are my comments for today on this exchange in Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev with DC comments,

That Last Trip

I remember on my last acid trip in 1967 February on a hillside above Muir Woods,

Kids the Same

I've likely writ this before, but I notice often in foreign cultures how similar the sounds and energy of babies and children are. I can close my eyes and imagine we're anywhere. There must be cultures where that wouldn't hold but there are so many places where it does. I think it's true for adults too but we've grown more far apart. Still I see them all as just others mes. Actually, the dogs too. I guess the trees and the rocks and clouds. But the kids for sure. - DC

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Eternal Teaching

When we become lazy, Buddhism looks like it is no more. But when we are sincere, Buddhism will come out, Buddhism will be understood. You may say there is no more Buddhism in India or China or even in Japan, but Buddhism is eternal teaching. 

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-A as found on - Edited by DC 

Late Draft of ZMBM - part one

Go to the cuke page with a PDF of part one [and now part two] of a late draft of "Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation - by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. Editors: Richard Baker, Marian Derby, Gertrude Dixon." [before the final name - Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice by Shunryu Suzuki. Edited by Trudy Dixon.]

Inhabited Hairy Fruit

I often get the fruit called rambutan - rambut is hair and the red olive to egg sized oval fruit is hairy. Often I've noticed it comes with ants.

Freedom Songs X - SDS

Freedom Songs - my Journey through 1964 - part X - SDS

Friday, March 13, 2015

Continuing from yesterday's Suzuki lecture excerpt

This is fifth precept. In fifth precept we say, “Don't take, don't sell, or don't buy intoxicating liquor.” Don't buy [laughs]-- don't buy some images, or don't sell some images, some intoxicating liquor, some attachment. Don't sell any attachment to anyone. Don't buy any attachment from outside. 

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-A as found on - Edited by DC 

Responded to Remarks on ZMBM

Have responded all I can for now to Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev.

Bali Prison Art Sale Busted

We went to Kuta today - Katrinka, Olga from St. Petersberg, Blondine and her son Max from France, and me, courtesy of the Nyoman express (a delapidated bemo open sided mini bus) to attend the sale of prison art at the Hard Rock Cafe.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

More on Beyond Pure and Impure

Our buddha-nature is beyond pure or impure. It means just to be aware-- just to be aware of your true nature which is beyond pure or impure. Do you understand? To attach to purity is good, but buddha-nature is not pure or impure. Do you understand this point? If you understand this point, just to sit without thinking-- without being bothered by something which comes or images. Don't try to escape from it. Just sit. It will go. And you are beyond it. Those come in and come out. You are beyond intoxicating liquor.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-A as found on - Edited by DC 

DC Slowly Responding to Remarks on ZMBM at 40

As the title above states, I'm responding to Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev and posting my responses as I go. Getting a bit verbose and surely adding more contradictions but what the heck. - DC 

Good for Richard Branson

Breaking News

One-man rule in Israel's hippy micro-state - just thought I'd share this.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Don't Even Try

Don't-- don't even try to clear up your mind, even though you have something there. Don't want to be pure. If you want to be pure, it means you have attached to pureness -- purity. That is also not so good. Don't attach to purity or impurity.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-A as found on - Edited by DC 

More Questions on ZMBM

Adding to Victor Sergeyev's keen observations and detailed questions concerning the creation of Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind. I told him that he's really more of an expert on it than I am but I think we may be able to uncover some of the material he's interested in and answers to some of his questions. This addiion to yesterday's post is at the bottom of that page. - DC

Dogs in Bali

Thanks to Steve Tipton for sending link to this article on dog problems in Bali.

Here's my response - DC:

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Purpose of Practice

The purpose of practice is to have direct experience of buddha-nature. That is the purpose of our practice. So whatever you do, it should be the direct experience of buddha-nature.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-29-A as found on - Edited by DC 

Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev

Remarks on ZMBM at Forty from Victor Sergeyev. Victor is Secretary, PH Ligatma, publisher of Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind in Russian. I should run everything I write through him. Good eye for detail and most thorough research. Hope to hear more from Victor whom I've had correspondence with for a few years but I'm just now getting to including his comments. Will include my responses right away. Stay tuned. - DC

Bali Prison Art Sale coming up

Korobokan Prison Art Facebook Page

It's at the Hard Rock. Our buds at Annapurna Restaurant were going to host it - Ben, part owner manager, was interviewed by ABC. There was some nervousness about what he said and the authorities here and all. He said he was rather non-commital. But now it's at Hard Rock in Kuta which is better for sales probably. - DC

Monday, March 9, 2015

Your Body Is Not Yours

Your body is not yours at all [laughs], in its true sense. “True you” has no form or no body to have pain. “True you” has no pain at all. Sometimes your true nature will tell your physical body to kill yourself [laughs], if it is necessary. That is true self. If you are fully enlightened in your true self, whether your body is painful or not is not the problem. So religious mind is so strong. If it is necessary, they will burn their physical body. It's all right [laughs]. When your true nature tells you to burn up your body, that's all right. It is so strong. It is much stronger than emotion. By emotion you cannot do that. Just, you know, your true nature can do it.

Excerpt is another from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on - Edited by DC 

Chinese Documentary on Smog

Viewed 100,000 times in two days, Under the Dome removed from Chinese web sites - BBC

View Under the Dome with subtitles on YouTube


Katrinka and I say the Japanese "Itadakimasu" and gassho before we eat. We always do it even if we're out though we might bury it beneath token mumbles with friends. It's very common for Japanese to say that even before having a treat, but in that case, especially with friends. And they don't gassho. I've been saying itadakimasu since maybe 1966 when I came to Zen Center and lived in SF's Japantown though we didn't say that at Zen Center or any of its centers. It's not really Buddhist. It's Japanese and means to humbly receive - no subject, no object. I've used it in all the homes I've lived in and places I've been since then unless there was some sort of other something to say like at Zen Center. Tonight we said it and then we said it again and realized oh we've already said it. We do that quite a bit. I asked Katrinka if we get extra credit for saying it twice and she said, "Yes, absolutely." [All opinion expressed herein was not fact checked]. - DC

Sunday, March 8, 2015

True Nature Incomparably Greater

There is a limit - a time for suffering to stop. But true nature will never cease to act. The terminology [laughs] of delusion is something which is not real and which can be put to an end. And true nature is something which is eternal. True nature will not be lost. And through suffering you can have direct experience of your true nature, how strong it is. Your true nature is much stronger than the suffering you created -- small you created. True nature is incomparably greater than small mind. 

Excerpt is another from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on - Edited by DC 

Beginner's Mind - a Piano Piece by Walter Zimmerman

 Beginner's Mind - a Piano Piece from the seventies by Walter Zimmerman with words by him and Shunryu Suzuki (taken from Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind) - no audio yet, just score and words and info.

Right to Vote for Blacks still a Major Problem in US

From White Sheets to Spreadsheets - A day after the historic Selma march, Greg Palast on how voter suppression is denying millions the right to vote and keeping the South Republican.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

On the term Crooked Cucumber

A page on the term Crooked Cucumber - Just made this today. - DC

Papua Conflict

I don't know anything about the Papua conflict. Here's a page for it on Wikipedia. Have seen a couple of other reports that make much more extreme claims. - DC

Friday, March 6, 2015

Fight it Out

The understanding of inmost request by your tears is actual feeling - it makes sense to you. And you can apply it. You will never forget it. So we should know that there is truth in our utmost distress and suffering. We should not forget that there is truth in suffering. And we should not try to escape from it. We should fight it out [laughs]. It is possible. When you, you know, hesitate, you will be lost. When you face to it, you will win. That is true [laughs].

Excerpt is another from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on - Edited by DC 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Suffering Again

Student: What kind of a form is suffering? How can we know it? And how can we see through it?

Suzuki: Why we suffer is because everything which will give you suffering is something created by our mind. Everything you see is something created by your mind. Your suffering comes from something which is created by your mind. You are participating in creating some suffering. May not be just you, but you are acting main part of the play. And you create suffering. And you suffer from it.

Excerpt is another from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on - Edited by DC 

Prison Time

Nyoman drove Katrinka and me to the prison here today to meet with others to get prisoner paintings to take to the Hard Rock Cafe in Kuta to be sold for some fundraising venture.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Easy Way Won't Help

Why Buddha told us the Four noble truths is to destroy our easy way of understanding of life, scientific understanding or philosophical understanding. Those understandings are the easy way, you know. Without any effort you can read books [laughs]. Even though you are lying down you can study. Very easy. But it will not help you, actually will not help you.

Excerpt is another from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on - Edited by DC 

Worst Ever

Katrinka and I went shopping at a big supermarket in Denpasar today cause we were near there anyway looking for a cheaper place to get Katrinka some prescription glasses - all were the same high price and no plus contacts maybe on the whole Island, maybe in the whole country.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The Dream and Suffering

Every constituent object, everything which we see, which we feel, which we can understand - because it is not true, is full of suffering, suffering itself because it is dualistic. When there is duality, there is suffering. In this sense, everything appears in the form of suffering. When you understand that it is not true existence, there is no more suffering. If you find out that it is just a dream [laughs], there is no suffering. The dream you created or you have dreamed - then there is no more suffering. 

Today's quote directly follows yesterday's excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on -  - Excerpt edited by DC 

Father Steve Frost new poetry

Steve Frost has some new poetry that's pretty out there. Check it out

A Neat Story from Ramblin' Jack

Remembering the Panama Hotel and Restaurant in San Rafael. My mate Katrinka worked there for six years or so up to a couple of months before we left for Asia. She booked people into the hotel, hosted, and was in charge of the music which was great. Mainly jazz but some folk and mixed. One person I enjoyed seeing there was Ramblin' Jack Elliot.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Three Notes from Fran Thompson

On E.L., Old Foggies Zen, and a question to Suzuki about what to do between morning and evening zazen. See the post for 3-03-15 on Fran's cuke page.

And check yesterday's post on the time and place for her memorial.

Big Self Only

When I speak like this, there is already some duality, you know. Small self or big self. But actually the small self does not exist. That which exists is big self only. We just create small self, and we say this is right [laughs]. But it is not right. So first of all we should be emancipated from the idea of small self. That is why Buddha says, “Every constituent existence is doomed to suffer.”

Today's quote directly follows yesterday's excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on -  - Excerpt edited by DC 

Greenhouse Gas Effect Measured

Greenhouse Gas Proof Positive - from the Climate News Network

Freedom Songs - part IX

Freedom Songs - my Journey through 1964 
part IX - Ohio

Posted the first eight parts of this story in 2012. Only have the final wrap up chapter left to do - XII. Will have it done by time its turn comes up. Thought I'd posted all but XII last year and 2013 and the files are on the site, but don't see any mention of them in past What's New posts. So here goes. - DC

Sunday, March 1, 2015

True Nature Recites Sutra

Your true nature should recite sutra. Big mind recites, not small mind. Small self should not recite sutra. The self which is universal to everyone should recite sutra with people.

Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture 65-07-28-D as found on -  - Excerpt edited by DC 

Memorial for Fran Thompson

Memorial for Fran Thompson coming up March 28th at the Muir Woods Park Community Association Clubhouse, Mill Valley, California - Read more on official announcement at the bottom of Fran's cuke page.

NRCAT - National Religious Campaign Against Torture - Report

Read what NRCAT and others are doing about torture in or by the US.

Another Fire in Bali

The Lembongan beach club and resort , 1/2 hotel is gone last night.14 villas and the spa together with the Restaurant burn to ground. Injured unknown for now. Here's a photo.php from Katrinka's Facebook page. She was just there yesterday.