February 17, 1966
Rev. S. Suzuki
The message for us for today was ‘cultivate your own spirit’. It says there on the calendar…Cultivate your own spirit. This is very important point and this is how we practice zen. When…for us to hear lecture, to give lecture or to recite sutra, or to sit, of course, is zen. Each of those activities should be zen, but if you do not…if your effort or practice is not…does not have right orientation it does not work at all… not only it does not work…it may spoil your pure nature. The more you know something about it the more you will get spoiled…you will have just stains on your mind, and your mind will be filled with rubbish. That is not…that is quite usual for us…gathering various information from various source, and you think you know many things, but you don’t know anything at all. That is quite usual. So we should not be…our understanding of Buddhism should not be just gathering many information and knowledge. Instead of gathering various knowledge we should accept it as you listen to something which you have already known, or you have already knew. This is so-called emptiness or you may say omnificent self…you know everything. You are like a dark sky…some time a flashing come through the dark sky and you forget all about it. After flashing gets through it there is nothing, but the sky will not be surprised even though thunderbolt break out all of a sudden. It does not make…it will not cause any surprise for the sky. But when the lightening hits though we will see the wonderful sight of it, but we do not…we are not…we are always prepared for watching the flashing.