Suzuki Roshi Transcripts

Sunday, February 01, 1970

Morning Sesshin Lecture

City Center

How do you-how do you like zazen? [Laughs, laughter.] And maybe-maybe better to ask you how do you like brown rice? [Laughs, laughter.] I think this is better question, you know. Zazen is too much. [Laughs, laughter.] Brown rice, I think, just right. [Laughter.] But actually not much difference. [Laughter.] Zazen has strong f- [partial word]-zazen is strong food like brown rice. And I was very much interested in the way you eat brown rice. [Laughs.] I'm-I'm very much impressed, you know, the way you eat brown rice.

Can you hear me?

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Afternoon Sesshin Tea Lecture

Sunday, February 1, 1970

Sesshin is almost-sesshin has almost completed. In this sesshin, we have learned many things. I want to-can you hear me?-I want to, you know, say something about what I noticed.

Here we are-each one of us is a cook. In turn we work in the kitchen, and here, you know, in zendo we take care of this zendo by ourselves mostly. Right now, we carrying our stick in turn, and I want-I explained, you know, how to eat brown rice, you know. The more you chew it, you will have the taste of the brown rice. And in zendo, you are food [laughs]. You are rice and vegetables from various states, and we must cook ourselves [laughs], you know, some MORE ...

Sunday, February 08, 1970


Each time we-we start lecture, we recite "an unsurpassed, penetrating Buddha," and so on. This is the essential-pointing at essential teaching of Buddha. And it is not just opening of the [laughs] lecture. It is-this gyata[1] itself is perfect dharma.

When we start-before we start lecture, or when you-when someone start lecture, and when you listen to it, and when we speak and listener start to study Buddhism, we-we must have this understanding-perfect understanding. Only when we, you know, we give up the idea of "we," you know, and when we have converted in-"we" in its true sense, this dharma, whatever it is, MORE ...

Sunday, February 22, 1970

The Background of Shikantaza

San Francisco

I think most of you participate one-week sesshin from tomorrow.[1] So far, we have been practicing counting breathing or following breathing. But maybe tomorrow-from tomorrow, in one-week sesshin, we will, you know, practice shikantaza.

I want to explain, you know, what is shikantaza. Shikantaza is, as you know-excuse me-just to sit, you know. We say "shikantaza." Just to sit. But there is-if you, you MORE ...

Monday, February 23, 1970

Sesshin Lecture #1

Selflessness, Being and Non-Being: The Background of Shikantaza

San Francisco

In this sesshin I suggested to practice shikantaza. For-anyway for beginner, you know, it doesn't make much difference [laughs]. I am sorry to say so, but shikantaza or counting breathing-it doesn't make much sense. But anyway, you know, to have strong determination to sit, you know, for seven-six days is enough, you know. If you have that much conviction in your practice I think that is pretty good.

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Wednesday, February 25, 1970

Sesshin Lecture #3

Non-Dualistic Practice

San Francisco

Yesterday I talked about how to, maybe-two ways of practice: one is zazen practice under the guidance of the right teacher, and the other is how to extend our practice in our everyday life. And the-it-our teaching mostly-especially Mahayana Buddhist teachings-mostly directed how to extend our practice to our everyday practice.

The teaching of emptiness or teaching of interdependency-those MORE ...

Saturday, February 28, 1970

Last Lecture of Sesshin

Practice to be Like a Stone

San Francisco

Before we sit, six-day sesshin was too long. But after we completed, it was too short [laughs, laughter]. I think you feel, you know, quite different feeling. For an instance, when you walk, you know, you have quite different feeling. You feel as if you-your legs have become shorter [laughs, laughter], and your legs stick to floor, you know, and you feel very heavy [laughs] in your walking. It should be, you know, great joy for you, you know, when you completed such a long torch,[1] you know. But, you know, it is strange, you know, not to MORE ...


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

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