Suzuki Roshi Transcripts

Tuesday, January 01, 1963

Ummon Zenji and the Teaching Given by Shakyamuni (Blue Cliff Record #14, #15)

First Question:

A traveling monk asked Ummon-zenji: What is this first teaching? (the Teaching told by Buddha during Buddha's own lifetime).

Ummon replied: The teaching confronts each. (Model Subject No. 14)

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Friday, March 01, 1963

Gutei's Lifting Up One Finger (Blue Cliff Record #19)

Gutei lived in a small hermitage to be free from the fierce persecution of the first part of the ninth century, A.D. in China.

One day a nun named Jissai came to visit him, entering with her hat on her head and her pilgrim staff in her hand. She looked around the seat where Gutei was sitting and said, "I will take off my pilgrimage hat, if you give me a satisfactory statement." When he could say nothing, she started to leave. He tried to stop her, because it was late and dark out. Then she said, "If you can offer one word good enough to stop me, I will be happy to stay."

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Monday, April 01, 1963

Blue Cliff Record #20

Zen may be said to be the practice of cultivating our mind to make it deep and open enough to accept the various seeds of ideas and thoughts as they are. When this kind of perfect acceptance takes place, everything will orient itself according to its own nature and the circumstances. We call this activity the Great Activity. Reality can be said to be the bed that is deep and soft enough to accept everything as it is.

When you accept everything, everything is beyond dimensions. The earth is not great nor a grain of sand small. In the realm of Great Activity picking up a grain of sand is the same as taking up the whole universe. To save one sentient being is to save all sentient MORE ...

Monday, July 01, 1963

Blue Cliff Record #25

Introductory word:

Engo introducing the subject said, "If a man comes to a standstill at some stage, feeling spiritual pride in his enlightenment; he will find himself in a sea of poison. If he finds his words unable to astonish men of lofty spirit, then what he says is quite pointless.

If one can discern the relative and the absolute in the spark of MORE ...

Sunday, September 01, 1963

Joshu's Large Radishes (Blue Cliff Record #30)

There is no Introductory Word to Model Subject No. 30 from the Blue Cliff Records, but I will apply the following statement from a Buddhist Guide for the Layman by Sita Paulickpulla Renfrew (publisher: Cambridge Buddhist Association, Cambridge, Mass.) as an introduction.

"According to Buddhist ethics, no person or authority can ever impose upon another any code of conduct lower in morality or humanity than the individual himself wishes. Neither can anyone MORE ...

Friday, November 01, 1963

Cho-sha's "Strolling about Mountains and Waters" (Blue Cliff Record #36)

Attention! One day Cho-sha went for a walk. When he returned to the gate, the gate-keeper asked, "Sir, where have you bee walking?" Cho-sha said, "I have been strolling about in the hills." "Where did you go?" asked the gatekeeper. "I have walked through the scent of herbs and wandered by the falling flowers." said Cho-sha. The gatekeeper said, "Very much like a calm Spring feeling." Cho-sha said, "It transcends even the cold Autumn dew falling on the lotus stems."

Setcho, the compiler of the Blue Cliff Records, adds the MORE ...

Sunday, December 01, 1963

Rikko's "Heaven and Earth are the Same Essence" (Blue Cliff Record #40)

Rikko is said to have lived from 764-834. He was a high official of the tang government in china. He was a disciple of Nansen Fugan. His writings and biography are in Koji-buntoruko. There were many famous lay Zen Buddhists during the tang Dynasty. The most famous of these lay Buddhists are:

Ho-Koji (Ho-un)--see Model Subject No. 42

Kak Rakten (Hak-Kyoi)--the most famous writer and poet of the Tang Dynasty.

Haikyu--Highest public official of the time. His teacher was Obaku (Huang Po).

Haykyu--Compiler of Obaku's Denshin Hoyo (a collection of MORE ...


Verbatim transcripts of lectures by Shogaku Shunryu Suzuki, Roshi, 1962-1971

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