Suzuki Roshi Transcripts

Friday, August 01, 1969

Truth and Liberation


As a Buddhist, of course, the most important precept is to-to believe in Buddha and his teaching and his disciples. Buddha, you know, for us is someone who attained enlightenment-not only historical Buddha but also Buddha's disciples who attained enlightenment is buddha. And still this is its-in its narrow sense. In its wider sense, whether we attain enlightenment or not we are buddha-not only human being but also various beings, animate and inanimate. Even something like stone is buddha, in its wide sense. So everything is buddha in its wide sense.

But the religion is mostly for human being who saw-when we said "buddha" usually someone who attain liberation is buddha. It may be MORE ...

Saturday, August 02, 1969

Change and Suffering


I'm afraid I will-I am making you hotter [laughs] because I cough and my lecture is maybe pretty difficult to understand because of my English especially. Last night I was trying to-my skeleton of lecture was like this [laughs]. Can you read it?

The first teaching-the-we-we have four or three series of Buddhist teaching. The teaching-the teaching that [laughter]-the teaching that everything is changing-in Japanese, shogyo-mujo[1]-or Chinese shogyo-mujo-teaching that everything is changing. This teaching can be-could be understand in two ways: MORE ...

Sunday, August 03, 1969



As most of you know, this is Yoshimura Ryogen-sensei.[1] Ryogen Yoshimura-sensei. In Japanese way we say family name first, so Yoshimura Ryogen. But-Yoshimura is family name. Ryogen-sensei, or Yoshimura-sensei. He was appointed-he arrived at San Francisco as our teacher, or as our friend, March 27?

Off-mike: Yes.

March 27. And mostly he was in-he has been in San Francisco. I think he came here once? Twice?

Off-mike: Twice.

Twice. So most of you know, I think, know him. But as some of MORE ...

Wednesday, August 06, 1969

August Sesshin Lecture

San Francisco

I think you are facing actual problem in your zazen practice. The worst one may be the pain of your legs, maybe. It is some-not secret, but it is some certain way to sit in pain. Because it is so direct that you have no time to-to think of some way, you know. Before you think it comes, and you are involved in the pain. But that is so-called-it, you know-that you are involved in the pain immediately means that your way, your way of life, or your attitude towards your life is not well-trained.

For an instance, if you-I think some of you must have this kind MORE ...

Thursday, August 07, 1969

August Sesshin Lecture

San Francisco

[In][1] Buddhist scripture, you know, there is a famous story. Water is same, but-water is, for human being, is water [laughs], and for celestial being-for celestial being it is jewel. And for fish it is their home. And for people in hell or hungry ghosts it is blood or maybe fire. If they want to drink it, the water change into fire. So they cannot drink it [laughs].

Same water [laughs, laughter], you know, looks like very different. But you may-you may say, you know, our understanding of-of water is right. It-it should not be "home" or "house" or MORE ...

Tuesday, August 12, 1969

Question and Answer

[I did not][1] prepare for tonight lecture anything. So I want you to ask some questions, and I will answer for the question, as I have nothing in my mind right now. Hai.

Student A: Of the two types of meditation, the counting and the shikantaza-the counting-do you think that has more to do with ego purification?

Suzuki-roshi: The counting-if you-it looks like different from-counting-breathing practice looks like different from the MORE ...

Monday, August 18, 1969



Suzuki-roshi: Tonight I want to discuss about our way to attain liberation or enlightenment. When you study Buddhism through teaching or reading scriptures, it looks like Buddhist has some special way of thinking by which we attain liberation. If we understand Buddhism, and if we take the Buddhist standpoint or Buddhist way of thinking, that is the way to attain liberation.

Do you hear me?

Various Students: Yes.

Suzuki-roshi: Okay? [Laughs.] Most people may understand MORE ...

Thursday, August 28, 1969

Question and Answer


Suzuki-roshi: I want you to ask me a question. [Laughs.] I have nothing in my mind to say. Something-some question about our practice, maybe, or zazen practice, or our everyday practice. Hai.

Student A: I have two days-I am leaving Tassajara to live in the city after being here for one year. I wonder what you might have specifically to say to me about that right now.

Suzuki-roshi: Right now [laughs]. What time did you actually come back?

Student A: Come to-back?

MORE ...


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

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