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Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Pure Practice

How you then, you know, how you arise bodhisattva mind will be the next point. You will ask me how you arise bodhisattva mind. Many people ask me, you know, about this point. Aquestion will be something like this:

“I have various problems and you always say you should not, try to attain enlightenment. You should not involved in selfish practice. If so, to try to save others is also gaining idea because you have some purpose or some idea of doing something. So that will not be actually bodhisattva mind.”

Actually, we will have this kind of question always. To practice purely you start to try to do something, to help others. But you may wonder whether you are doing something to help others or to help yourselves [laughs]. It is very difficult to know which. I think you may suffer on this point a lot, as I did when I was young. Whatever I tried, while I was trying continually doing something, more and more, I lose my confidence. For instance, if you clean a restroom, you know, as your task—everyday task. You get up before your friends get up, and you clean our restroom. Why we get up so early is to keep our practice pure, so that we are not involved in selfish practice. So, if no one can see our practice, then my mind is pure and the pure practice will go on. But when someone sees you doing something, immediately some conflict arises, especially if he is your teacher [laughs]. You don’t know how to feel. The feeling is very complicated. In one way, you will be glad to be found out by your [laughs] teacher, and on the other hand, you may feel very bad when you have a kind of good feeling or joy of being found out by someone. “Now, [laughs] what you are doing?”    --------------------------- Excerpt from Shunryu Suzuki  lecture 70-08-03 - as found on shunryusuzuki.comfrom one of the newly discovered (2021) or recently significantly added to or changed lecture tapes. 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. Go to for more daily Shunryu Suzuki lecture excerpts - with a photo

DC Comment: I didn't know quite what to do with this so I left a lot of it as one post. Changed his use of pronouns and singular/plural some. Took out a zillion "you know." He's talking about what he did at Komazawa, the Soto Zen college in Japan. It's continued tomorrow.