Shunryu Suzuki Quotes

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Image, If you understand real practice, then archery or other activities can be

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If you understand real practice, then archery or other activities can be zen. If you don't understand how to practice archery in its true sense, then even though you practice very hard, what you acquire is just technique. It won't help you through and through. Perhaps you can hit the mark without trying, but without a bow and arrow you cannot do anything. If you understand the point of practice, then even without a bow and arrow the archery will help you. How you get that kind of power or ability is only through right practice.

Shunryu Suzuki

Image, In the beginner’s mind there is no thought, “I have attained something.”

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In the beginner's mind there is no thought, "I have attained something." All self-centered thoughts limit our vast mind. When we have no thought of achievement, no thought of self, we are true beginners. Then we can really learn something. The beginner's mind is the mind of compassion. When our mind is compassionate, it is boundless. Dogen-zenji, the founder of our school, always emphasized how important it is to resume our boundless original mind. Then we are always true to ourselves, in sympathy with all beings, and can actually practice.

Shunryu Suzuki

Image, And we should forget, day by day, what we have done; this

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And we should forget, day by day, what we have done; this is true non-attachment. And we should do something new. To do something new, of course we must know our past, and this is alright. But we should not keep holding onto anything we have done; we should only reflect on it. And we must have some idea of what we should do in the future. But the future is the future, the past is the past; now we should work on something new.

Shunryu Suzuki

Image, In Japan we have the phrase, “Shoshin,” which means “beginner’s mind.” Our “

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In Japan we have the phrase, "Shoshin," which means "beginner's mind." Our "original mind" includes everything within itself. It is always rich and sufficient within itself. This does not mean a closed mind, but actually an empty mind and a ready mind. If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything. It is open to everything. In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities; in the expert's mind there are few.

Shunryu Suzuki