Archive for October, 1965

October 28 1965

Thursday, October 28th, 1965

Suzuki-roshi

Suzuki-roshi

October 28, 1965

Rev. S. Suzuki

Thursday morning lectures

In the past, in Hinayana practice in the first stage we still have consistent thinking faculties.  We do not stop our pure thinking.  This is interesting, very interesting point.

Usually we stop thinking when we sit but in the first state we can retain our thinking in sitting.  For instance when you contemplate on koan in Rinzai school they still think that thinking should be pure thinking.  Pure thinking is the characteristic of human being.  Pure thinking – no emotional faculty.  There is no emotional or sensed function.  When we see clear we know even though it is like this (draws a rectangle) it is clear for us and we know the four angles will make 360 degrees.  That kind of thinking is pure thinking.  But usually we concern if the square is right square or not.  If we think in this way, some discrimination involved in it, that is not pure thinking, which is limited in our pure human being thinking.

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October 21 1965

Thursday, October 21st, 1965

October 21, 1965

Rev. S. Suzuki

Thursday morning lecture

As you know, in Buddhism there are many schools.  But you can classify Buddhism into Mahayana and Hinayana schools.  Almost all schools in Japan belong to Mahayana school.  Mahayana people called original Buddhists, old Buddhists or direct disciples of Buddha, called Hinayana Buddhists.  It means small vehicle while Mahayana is big or large vehicle.  But Mahayana school originated from Hinayana school.  Development of Buddhism take place and Mahayana school is supposed to be more advanced school.  But it is not exactly so.  Even in the time of Buddha there were many Mahayanistic disciples.  And it is pretty difficult to say which is better, Mahayana or Hinayana.  So in Soto school we do not say Mahayana is good or Hinayana is good.  Just the same, and from standpoint of zen Buddha practiced zen, and Hinayana Buddhists and Mahayana Buddhists have been practicing zazen.  So, if we become…if we discriminate the teaching which was told by him, or forms which he set up at the time of Buddha, or the rules which were set by some other disciples is based on his character, and his character is based on his practice.  And so, from this standpoint, for zen Buddhists, there is no need to say Mahayana Buddhism or Hinayana Buddhism.

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October 16 1965 2nd Talk

Saturday, October 16th, 1965

Suzuki-roshi at Tassajara

OCTOBER SESSHIN LECTURE

Shunryū Suzuki

October 16, 1965 (Wind Bell, Nov.–Dec. 1965)

Transcribed by Trudy Dixon

Late Afternoon Lecture:

We have finished sesshin with unusual results. We have practiced in our own way and our Patriarch’s way, expressing our true nature, transmitted by Buddha to us. Our responsibility as Buddha’s disciples is to manifest his way according to time and age, according to circumstances. Although how we express his way is not the same, that which is expressed is one true nature, which is universal for everyone and every existence.

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October 16 1965

Saturday, October 16th, 1965

OCTOBER SESSHIN LECTURE

Shunryū Suzuki

October 16, 1965 (Wind Bell, Nov.–Dec. 1965)

Transcribed by Trudy Dixon

Afternoon Lecture:

It is a great joy to practice sesshin with you in this way. I think this is quite unusual to be practicing zazen with many students in this room. Even in Japan I don’t think this is always possible. Japan and America are not so far away today, although the ways of life are quite different from each other. I have studied many things in America which I could not study in Japan. And I think that you will study many things from us which you cannot study in America. In this way our effort will bring some result if we keep our straightforward way in practice.

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October 14 1965

Thursday, October 14th, 1965

Suzuki-roshi in an airport with his family in Japan

Suzuki-roshi in an airport with his family in Japan

October 14, 1965

Rev. S. Suzuki

Thursday morning lectures

I don’t feel to speak after zazen.  I feel the practice of zazen is enough but if I should say something, I think what I shall talk will be how wonderful it is to practice zazen in this way.  Our purpose is just to keep this practice forever.  This practice is started from beginningless time and it will continue for endless future.  Strictly speaking, for human being there is no other practice than this practice.  There is no other way of life than this way of life, because zen practice is direct expression of our true nature.  Of course, whatever you do, it is the expression of our true nature, but without this practice it is difficult to realize what is our life.  As long as you think, ‘I am doing this.  I have to do this’, or ‘I must attain something special’,  actually you are not doing anything.  When you give up, or when you do not want to, when you do not do anything, you do something.  When you do not do anything with some gaining idea, you do something.  Actually what you are doing is not for sake of something.  You feel as if you are doing something special but actually it is the expression of true nature, or that is the activity to appease you inmost desire.

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October 7 1965

Thursday, October 7th, 1965

October 7, 1965

Rev. S. Suzuki

Thursday morning lecture

I am so glad to see you again.  For two weeks I studied many things and I found that to have so many friends in this area is quite unusual.  Back East they find pretty difficult to have good students.  Of course there are many people who are interested in Buddhism, but quite few people are interested in pure form of Buddhism.  They are interested in studying the teaching of Buddhism, or philosophy of Buddhism and they are comparing our Buddhism to another religion and they understand intellectually how Buddhism is good for intellectual mind.  But whether Buddhism is philosophically deep or good or perfect is not our point.  To keep our practice in its pure form is our purpose.  When I felt something even blasphemous when they talk about how Buddhism is perfect as a philosophy or teaching without actually knowing what it is.

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