Posts Tagged ‘Love’

October 14th, 1969

Tuesday, October 14th, 1969

Suzuki-roshi talking to a park ranger

Shunryū Suzuki-rōshi

Tuesday, October 14, 1969

San Francisco

 Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 69-10-14 part a

 Listen to this talk: Suzuki-roshi 69-10-14 part b

Suzuki-rōshi:  Since I resigned from Soko-ji Temple, I—my mind become more busy than before.  It is ridiculous, but actually it is so.


Physically I am feeling much better.  But mentally [laughs]—I’m not confused, but I’m reflecting on what I have been doing for ten years.  And as I do not stay with you so long time when our members [are] increasing a lot, I feel a great distance, you know, between you and me.  That is another problem for me.  Anyway, I think we must find our way.  And I think it is a time for us to find out some way to develop our buddha’s way.


As I have nothing to talk about tonight, so I want you to give me some question.  And I want especially new students to give me some questions.  Whatever it is, that is all right.  So please give me some questions.  Hai.


Student A:  I just finished reading something that said everything in life is necessary.  Do you agree?


Suzuki-rōshi:  Excuse me?


Student A:  I just finished reading something that referred to everything in life as necessary:  the actions, the things that happen, are all necessary.  In other words, the war, peace, love, hate, they’re all necessary in life.  Is that right?


Suzuki-rōshi:  Necessary.  You mean there is some reason for everything to happen?  Or—


Student A:  I guess you could call it that, or something that—no matter what happens, it’s the individual that counts.  It doesn’t matter what’s happening in the whole.  It’s just the individual that will eventually count in the end.  That’s what I’m referring to—that you can’t do anything about the whole but you can do something about yourself.


Suzuki-rōshi:  That’s pretty big question.  It is—I think you are asking me about Buddhist view of life—human life.  Is it?


Student A:  I guess I’m asking a question about the way I’ve felt in the past months—the way I look at things.  And it seems as though when I look at things in this way, everything seems to have fallen in place.  Everything seems to have meaning.  It doesn’t seem to trouble you at all.


Suzuki-rōshi:  Meaning.  Yeah.  When we say—you know, you—your question, I think, more than, you know—actually what you mean—that question may be the question of why we practice zazen, you know, or why is it necessary to set up some rules or why is it necessary for human being to have some certain culture.  The meaning of life—when we say “meaning,” it is already problem of—question of some certain view of life.  When you see or when you understand our life from some certain viewpoint, we say, “It is meaningful,” not “It does not mean anything.”  But when you say, “Everything is meaningful,” maybe it means we should have a wider viewpoint without sticking to some certain viewpoint.  Then everything will have some—will have meaning.  Everything which happens in our human life or in nature has some meaning—has meaning.


December 9 1965

Thursday, December 9th, 1965

December 9, 1965

Rev. S. Suzuki

Thursday morning lecture

Here we recite the sutra just once but in Zen Center we recite three times.  The first one is for direct disciples of Buddha.  We call them arhat.  Arhat means the disciples who completed their way.  Arhat.  But Mahayana Buddhists called them Hinayana which means small vehicle.  Small vehicle means Hinayana.  They called themselves great vehicle while direct disciples of Buddha was called Hinayana or small vehicle.  That is not so fair but actually they called themselves great and called other Buddhists small vehicle.  But in Soto way we respect the direct disciples.  So first of all we recite the sutra for the Hinayana Buddhists.  This is one of the characteristics of Soto way.  And our way is not Hinayana or Mahayana.  Our way is Buddha’s way – not small vehicle or great vehicle.  There’s no vehicle in Buddha’s way.  Our way is not only Buddha’s way, but also it is, maybe, we, human beings way.  So before Buddha we count seven Buddhas.  Buddha is the seventh one.  Buddha is not the first one.  But this is another characteristic of our way.  So teachers of Buddha is also…we should respect them, but….so Dogen Zenji did not like to call Zen…to call themselves Zen.  He says, “We are just disciples of Buddha”.  So some people say Soto zen….zen which transcend zen is Soto zen.