Shunryu Suzuki Literature

“We say ‘shoshin’. Sho shin means beginner’s mind. If we can keep beginner’s mind always that is the goal of our practice…In beginner’s mind we have many possibilities, but in expert mind there is not much possibility. So in our practice it is important to resume to our original mind or inmost mind which we, ourselves, even we ourselves do not know what it is. This is the most important thing for us. The founder of our school emphasized this point. We have to remain always beginners mind. This is the secret of Zen and secret of various practices … If we keep our beginner’s mind, we keep our precepts…So if you can keep your beginner’s mind forever, you are Buddha. In this point, our practice should be constant…There is no need to have deep understanding about Zen. Even though you read Zen literature you have to keep this beginner’s mind. You have to read it with fresh mind. We shouldn’t say, “I know what is Zen” or “I have attained enlightenment.”. We should be always big enough. This is very important. And we should be very very careful about this point.”

– Shunryu Suzuki Roshi;  November 11th 1965, Los Altos  

Branching Streams Flow in the Darkness (Zen Talks on the Sandokai) – Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind – Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

Shunryu Suzuki Digital Archives

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