Posts Tagged ‘Bodhisattva Way’

August 4th, 1970

Saturday, August 8th, 1970

Shunryū Suzuki-rōshi


Tuesday Evening, August 4, 1970

San Francisco

 Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 70-08-04

In—in everyday life, to observe precepts and, in our practice, to continue our zazen looks like different, but actually it is same.  In actual zazen, whether—even though your practice is not perfect, if you practice our way, there there is enlightenment because originally, you know, our practice is expression of our true buddha-mind.


Because you—your—because of your discrimination, you say your practice is not good.  But if we do not, you know—if we do not discriminate [in] our practice, that is really the expression of the—our true nature, which is buddha-nature.


And in our everyday life, if we observe precepts even for a moment with this—with our mind—with our mind which is changing always, then the momentous change—on the momentous changing mind, real, you know, moon of the buddha-mind will appear:  bodhi-mind will be there.  So actually there is no difference.


May 10th, 1970

Sunday, May 10th, 1970

Shunryū Suzuki-rōshi


Sunday, May 10, 1970

City Center, San Francisco

Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 70-05-10


This morning I want to reflect on our long, long practice, which we started maybe more than ten years ago.  The purpose of Zen Center is, as you know, to provide a Zen meditation hall or whatever it is, you know:  some place to practice zazen, and practice with some teacher, was the original intention of Zen Center.  And with this purpose we organized non-profit organization.  And now, here, when we, you know, acquired this building, we named this building Mahābodhisattva Zendō.  It is—reflecting on our practice that was, you know, nothing but the bodhisattva way:  to help others and to help ourselves.


In the meantime we had Tassajara zendō because we needed some place where we can practice our way, putting everything aside and being completely involved in our practice—not—maybe not completely, but [laughs] more completely [laughs]—almost completely.  For a human being this “almost” is always necessary [laughs], or else we cannot survive.  “Almost” is, you know, actually the secret of practice.


But anyway, we can practice our way almost completely putting everything aside.  That was the purpose of Tassajara zendō, and that we have that—this special zendō means at the same time to—we can understand actually what is Zen—Zen practice in more traditional way, or else, you know, or else we do not know what we are doing here—unless we know some background of our practice.  In here, it is difficult to, you know, have—to have full understanding of our practice here and with—what we are doing here.


It is something like to know your family, you know.  When we know your friend’s family, you will know your friend, you know, much better.  Even though your—you know your friend—you think you know your friend, if you do not know the background of your friend, you—sometime it is difficult to understand your friend.


December 3rd, 1969

Wednesday, December 3rd, 1969

Suzuki-roshi monitoring Zazen at Sokoji

Shunryū Suzuki-rōshi


Wednesday, December 3, 1969


Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 69-12-03


I explained briefly about bodhisattva mind.  And we have also bodhisattva practice—bodhisattva practice—we count six and sometime four [bodhisattva practices].


Of course, [1] most important one is zazen practice.  That is the most important one, maybe.  And [2] to keep precepts and [3] to—to practice almsgiving—almsgiving, to offer something or to Buddha or to people to help, and to keep precepts, and [4] to vigorously practice all those practice, and [5] endeavorance to be patient, and [6] wisdom—to have wisdom.  Those are six practice of bodhisattva.


And Dōgen-zenji might [?] count four practices:  [1] and one is dāna-prajñāpāramitā, which is to give something; and [2] to give kind words; and [3] to benefit others; and [4] last one is to be friendly with others.  Those are four bodhisattva’s practice.  I want to explain it according to Shōbōgenzō.


The “to give something” does not mean just to give something—some words or some dharma.  Those are, you know—so, it may be divided, classified into:  one is material, the other is spiritual giving.  But when we practice this, we must not have any idea of selfish—self.  So it means that something—according to the nature of something, you know, if rice or food is something to eat, you know, let them eat the food.  Let the food go to something hungry—someone who is hungry [laughs].  That is—according to him, that is almsgiving.


So, you know, without any idea of “me” or “you,” you know, to give—let the things goes where the things want to go [laughs].  That is almsgiving.  That is bodhisattva spirit.  In this way, we treat things, we practice bodhisattva way.


July 28 1965

Wednesday, July 28th, 1965

Shunryū Suzuki-rōshi


Wednesday, July 28, 1965

Lecture C

Soko-ji Temple, San Francisco

Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 65-07-28

[1] Bodhisattva-mind, which is rather dualistic, but if you understand bodhisattva-mind in dualistic way, it is not right understanding.  When you try to understand bodhisattva way by thinking or philosophical way, it is dualistic.  Each school has its system of teaching, but Zen has no system of philosophy.  Although we have—Sōtō school have—has Shōbōgenzō, that is not possible to understand [in] just [a] philosophical way.  That is why when some scholar write something about Shōbōgenzō, he sub- [partial word]—he will submit what he wrote to some Zen master, you know.  He does not announce, or he does not print before a Zen master check-up.  This is—this point is pretty strict with our—in our schools because just philosophical understanding is not good enough as a work of Sōtō school. So we—we are pretty strict with this point.