Suzuki Roshi

‘It is necessary for you to follow some rules, you know. And you should have some purpose. We say “gan” [pranidhana, vows to some particular end]. Gan means to purpose—to have some purpose. For—for Buddhists, to save all sentient being, even though it is not possible. To save them all, is our final desire. Our effort should be directed to that direction. So, if the purpose of [laughs] making garden is to help hungry people [laughs], you see, you—you should protect the plant from hail and insects.

So, there should be some purpose, or else we cannot live. To live means to have some purpose. And that purpose sometime, you know, not complete, or not wide enough. Everyone works for someone else at the same time. Even a thief will be kind to his wife or [laughs] at least to himself. But he is not kind enough to—to be kind to his neighbors [laughs]. That is why he steals something from neighbor. So, we should have some ultimate desire for which we strive.’ (from the Suzuki Roshi archives)

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