Zenkei Blanche Hartman

‘The first time I heard Suzuki Roshi speak, he said, “You are perfect just as you are.” I thought, “He doesn’t know me. I’m new here.” But again and again he would keep pointing in that direction, saying, “You have everything you need,” “You are already complete,” “Just to be alive is enough.” I finally had to assume that I was not the sole exception to these assertions, but I was still dubious. And as I continued to practice and to talk with other students of the buddha dharma, I found that many people share the conditioning that leads us to think that there’s something wrong with us. If we could only get, do, or be something more, then we would be alright. It’s so easy for us to get the idea that there’s something wrong with us. And it’s so hard to let go of that and just appreciate this one life, as it is, as a gift. In fact, not only is life a gift and practice a gift, everything we have, without exception, has come to us through the kindness of others.’ (Seeds for a Boundless Life)

I have often heard students of Suzuki Roshi say that it was his capacity to see them as they truly were, not as they thought they were, that inspired them to practice with him;  I heard Blanche speaking on this topic many times, and I am grateful to her for continuing this profound teaching of his.

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