Setting up for zazen at Sokoji
SESSHIN LECTURE NO. 1
Saturday, June 5, 1971
Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 71-06-05
First of all, I want to explain, you know, I want you to understand what is our practice. You know, our practice we say, “just to sit.” It is, you know, “just to sit,” but I want to try to explain as much as possible what do we mean by “just to sit.” Practice is usually, you know, practice to expect something: at least, if you practice, you know, some way, some practice, your practice will be improve. And if there is a goal of practice, you know, or if you practice aiming at something, you know, you will—your practice supposed to reach, you know, eventually, the goal of practice you expect. And actually, you know, if you practice, your practice itself will be improved day by day, you know.
That is very true, you know, but there is another, you know, one more, you know, understanding of practice, you know, like, you know, our practice is, you know, another understanding of practice. We practice it—our zazen—with two, with different, you know, understanding from this. But we cannot ignore the—our imp- [partial word]—progress in our practice. Actually, if you practice, you know, day by day, you make big progress. And actually it will help, you know, your practice will help your health and your mental condition, you know. That is very true.
But that is not, you know, full understanding of practice. Another understanding of practice is, you know, when you practice, you know, there there is—goal is there, you know, not, you know, one year or two years later. But when you do it right there, there is goal of practice. When you practice our way with this understanding, there is many things you must take care of so that you could be or you will be—you can—you will be concentrated on your practice. You will be completely involved in the practice you have right now. That is why you have various instruction, you know, about your practice, so that you can practice hard enough to feel, you know, the goal of practice right now, when you do it.