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Saturday, August 15, 2020

Stage

I have come to the conclusion already, but let us think more calmly and understand clearly what we have been studying in these two lectures. There are several things I want to point out. One is that when we read Buddhist scriptures, it is necessary for us to know at what kind of historical stage each sutra was told-- to know, in other words, who spoke the scripture.

For instance, when Westerners started to study Buddhist scriptures, they thought they were a kind of myth. That may be so, a kind of myth, nothing but a myth. If someone studies a scripture literally, without knowing what kind of background the scripture has, and if someone has compiled the scripture in a very emotional way, the description will be very mysterious. So we should know what kind of people described Buddha in this way, and whether this sutra is based on Mahayana or Hinayana teaching. I am not comparing, and I am not saying which is better. But we should know with what feeling, and what kind of attitude, this scripture was presented, or else we will not understand what it is. --------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki lecture - 68-10-21 as found on shunryusuzuki.com. Edited by DC  - Going through Suzuki lectures and posting anything that can stand on its own. Not looking for zingers or "the best of." I find that following these excerpts daily provides another way to experience Suzuki's teaching. - DC