110+ Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Friendship, Happiness And Practice

Top 10 Shunryu Suzuki Quotes (BEST)

  1. Leave your front door and your back door open. Allow your thoughts to come and go. Just don't serve them tea.
  2. When you do something, you should burn yourself up completely, like a good bonfire, leaving no trace of yourself.
  3. Treat every moment as your last. It is not preparation for something else.
  4. The most important point is to accept yourself and stand on your two feet.
  5. It must be obvious...that there is a contradiction in wanting to be perfectly secure in a universe whose very nature is momentariness and fluidity.
  6. When my master and I were walking in the rain, he would say, 'Do not walk so fast, the rain is everywhere.'
  7. It is easy to have calmness in inactivity, it is hard to have calmness in activity, but calmness in activity is true calmness.
  8. Everything is perfect, but there is a lot of room for improvement.
  9. Whereever you are, you are one with the clouds and one with the sun and the stars you see. You are one with everything. That is more true than I can say, and more true than you can hear.
  10. The true purpose of Zen is to see things as they are, to observe things as they are, and to let everything go as it goes. Zen practice is to open up our small mind.

Shunryu Suzuki Short Quotes

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  • Moment after moment, completely devote yourself to listening to your inner voice.
  • Nothing we see or hear is perfect. But right there in the imperfection is perfect reality.
  • What we call "I" is just a swinging door which moves when we inhale and when we exhale.
  • You are perfect as you are and there is always room for improvement.
  • Ego is a social institution with no physical reality. The ego is simply your symbol of yourself.
  • Preparing food is not just about yourself and others. It is about everything!
  • We have to study with our warm heart, not just with our brain.
  • People who know the state of emptiness will always be able to dissolve their problems by constancy.
  • To give your sheep or cow a large, spacious meadow is the way to control him.
  • The world is its own magic.

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Life

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Moment after moment everything comes out of nothingness. This is the true joy of life. — Shunryu Suzuki

When you do not realize that you are one with the river, or one with the universe, you have fear. Whether it is separated into drops or not, water is water. Our life and death are the same thing. When we realize this fact, we have no fear of death anymore. — Shunryu Suzuki

Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine. — Shunryu Suzuki

Real Freedom is to not feel limited when wearing this Zen robe, this troublesome formal robe. Similarly, in our busy life we should wear this civilization without being bothered by it, without ignoring it, without being caught by it. — Shunryu Suzuki

Christopher McCandless:"I will miss you too, but you are wrong if you think that the joy of life comes principally from the joy of human relationships. God's place is all around us, it is in everything and in anything we can experience. People just need to change the way they look at things. — Shunryu Suzuki

Life is like stepping onto a boat which is about to sail out to sea and sink. — Shunryu Suzuki

The teaching which is written on paper is not the true teaching. Written teaching is a kind of food for your brain. Of course it is necessary to take some food for your brain, but it is more important to be yourself by practicing the right way of life. — Shunryu Suzuki

The goal of our life’s effort is to reach the other shore, Nirvana. Prajna paramita, the true wisdom of life, is that in each step of the way, the other shore is actually reached. — Shunryu Suzuki

Zazen practice is the direct expression of our true nature. Strictly speaking, for a human being, there is no other practice than this practice; there is no other way of life than this way of life. — Shunryu Suzuki

In your everyday life you always have opportunities for enlightenment. If you go to the rest room, there is a chance to attain enlightenment. When you cook, there is a chance to attain enlightenment. When you clean the floor, there is a chance to attain enlightenment. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Practice

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It is only by practicing through a continual succession of agreeable and disagreeable situations that we acquire true strengths. To accept that pain is inherent and to live our lives from this understanding is to create the causes and conditions for happiness. — Shunryu Suzuki

The true practice to meditation is to sit as if you where drinking water when you are thirsty. — Shunryu Suzuki

Our way is to practice one step at a time, one breath at a time, with no gaining idea. — Shunryu Suzuki

Even though you have pain in your legs, you can do it. Even though your practice is not good enough, you can do it. — Shunryu Suzuki

Our practice should be based on the ideal of selflessness. Selflessness is very difficult to understand. If you try to be selfless, that is already a selfish idea. Selflessness will be there when you do not try anything. — Shunryu Suzuki

If your practice is good, you may become proud of it. What you do is good, but something more is added to it. Pride is extra. Right effort is to get rid of something extra. — Shunryu Suzuki

Bowing is a very serious practice. You should be prepared to bow, even in your last moment. even though it is impossible to get rid of our self-centered desires, we have to do it. Our true nature wants us to. — Shunryu Suzuki

The secret of Soto Zen is just two words: not always so.... In Japanese, it's two words, three words in English. That is the secret of our practice. — Shunryu Suzuki

Let your ears hear without trying to hear. Let the mind think without trying to think and without trying to stop it. That is practice. — Shunryu Suzuki

The more you practice zazen, the more you will be able to accept something as your own, whatever it is. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Suffering

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Without accepting the fact that everything changes, we cannot find perfect composure. But unfortunately, although it is true, it is difficult for us to accept it. Because we cannot accept the truth of transience, we suffer. — Shunryu Suzuki

Because we cannot accept the truth of transience, we suffer. — Shunryu Suzuki

A student, filled with emotion and crying, implored, "Why is there so much suffering?" Suzuki Roshi replied, "No reason. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Zen

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Zen is not some fancy, special art of living. Our teaching is just to live, always in reality, in its exact sense. To make our effort, moment after moment, is our way. — Shunryu Suzuki

To accept some idea of truth without experiencing it is like a painting of a cake on paper which you cannot eat. — Shunryu Suzuki

To have some deep feeling about Buddhism is not the point; we just do what we should do, like eating supper and going to bed. This is Buddhism. — Shunryu Suzuki

Wabi means spare, impoverished; simple and functional. It connotes a transcendence of fad and fashion. The spirit of wabi imbues all the Zen arts, from calligraphy to karate, from the tea ceremony to Zen archery. — Shunryu Suzuki

For Zen students, a weed is a treasure. — Shunryu Suzuki

Those who sit perfectly physically usually take more time to obtain the true way of Zen. — Shunryu Suzuki

If you want to study Zen, you should forget all your previous ideas and just practice zazen and see what kind of experience you have in your practice. That is naturalness. — Shunryu Suzuki

Things are always changing, so nothing can be yours. — Shunryu Suzuki

The secret of zen is just two words: not... always... so. — Shunryu Suzuki

Zen is everywhere.... But for you, Zen is right here. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Possibilities

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In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert's mind there are few. — Shunryu Suzuki

In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few. — Shunryu Suzuki

The mind of the beginner is empty, free of the habits of the experts, ready to accept, to doubt, and open to all possibilities. — Shunryu Suzuki

After you have practiced for a while, you will realize that it is not possible to make rapid, extraordinary progress. Even though you try very hard, the progress you make is always little by little. — Shunryu Suzuki

So it is not a matter of whether it is possible to attain Buddhahood, or if it is possible to make a tile a jewel. But just to work, just to live in this world with this understanding is the most important point, and that is our practice. That is true zazen. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Quotes On Mind

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If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything. — Shunryu Suzuki

When you are just you, without thinking or trying to say something special, just saying what is on your mind and how you feel, then there is naturally self-respect. — Shunryu Suzuki

Concentration comes not from trying hard to focus on something, but from keeping your mind open and directing it at nothing. — Shunryu Suzuki

The beginner's mind is the mind of compassion. When our mind is compassionate, it is boundless. — Shunryu Suzuki

When you try to attain something, your mind starts to wander about somewhere else. When you do not try to attain anything, you have your own body and mind right here. In Buddhism it is a heretical view to expect something outside this world. We do not seek for something besides ourselves. — Shunryu Suzuki

Nothing outside yourself can cause any trouble. You yourself make the waves in your mind. If you leave your mind as it is, it will become calm. This mind is called big mind. — Shunryu Suzuki

To stop your mind does not mean to stop the activities of mind. It means your mind pervades your whole body. — Shunryu Suzuki

If you think your body and mind are two, that is wrong; if you think that they are one, that is also wrong. Our body and mind are both two and one. — Shunryu Suzuki

Our mind should be free from traces of the past, just like the flowers of spring. — Shunryu Suzuki

Big mind is something to express, not something to figure out. Big mind is something you have, not something to seek for. — Shunryu Suzuki

Shunryu Suzuki Famous Quotes And Sayings

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In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities; in the expert's mind there are few.... 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. We can really learn something. — Shunryu Suzuki

Our tendency is to be interested in something that is growing in the garden, not in the bare soil itself. But if you want to have a good harvest, the most important thing is to make the soil rich and cultivate it well. — Shunryu Suzuki

So the secret is just to say 'Yes!' and jump off from here. Then there is no problem. It means to be yourself, always yourself, without sticking to an old self. — Shunryu Suzuki

To cook is not just to prepare food for someone or to cook for yourself; it is to express your sincerity. So when you cook you should express yourself in your activity in the kitchen. You should allow yourself plenty of time. — Shunryu Suzuki

Happiness is sorrow; sorrow is happiness. There is happiness in difficulty; difficulty in happiness. Even though the ways we feel are different, they are not really different, in essence they are the same. This is the true understanding transmitted from Buddha to us. — Shunryu Suzuki

It is a big mistake to think that the best way to express yourself is to do whatever you want, acting as you please. This is not expressing yourself. If you know what to do exactly, and you do it, then you can express yourself fully. — Shunryu Suzuki

Tai Shimano visited Shunryu Suzuki. "How are you feeling these days?" Suzuki replied, "They have a new name for me: Cancer!" — Shunryu Suzuki

If you were not born in this world, there would be no need to die. To be born in this world is to die, to disappear [laughing]. — Shunryu Suzuki

The seed has no idea of being some particular plant, but it has its own form and is in perfect harmony with the ground, with its surroundings ... and there is no trouble. This is what we mean by naturalness. — Shunryu Suzuki

When you say, "Wait a moment," you are bound by your karma; when you say "Yes I will," you are free. — Shunryu Suzuki

True communication depends upon our being straightforward with one another... But the best way to communicate may be just to sit without saying anything. — Shunryu Suzuki

You can't make a date with enlightenment. — Shunryu Suzuki

The best way to control cow and sheep is to give them a big grazing field. — Shunryu Suzuki

A tiger does not ignore or slight any small animal. The way he catches a mouse and catches and devours a cow are the same. — Shunryu Suzuki

When we inhale, the air comes into the inner world. When we exhale, the air goes out to the outer world. The inner world is limitless, and the outer world is also limitless. We say "inner world" or "outer world" but actually, There is just one whole world. — Shunryu Suzuki

Because all existence is founded upon the ever-present state of union, everything already exists in a state of tranquility. However, this state of tranquility is masked from us by our assumption that there is a separation, that there is a problem. — Shunryu Suzuki

The Zen way of calligraphy is to write in the most straightforward, simple way as if you were a beginner, not trying to make something skillful or beautiful, but simply writing with full attention as if you were discovering what you were writing for the first time; then your full nature will be in your writing. — Shunryu Suzuki

From True Emptiness The Wondrous Being Appears — Shunryu Suzuki

No matter what god or doctrine you believe in, if you become attached to it, your belief will be based more or less on a self-centered idea. — Shunryu Suzuki

The highest truth is daiji, translated as dai jiki in Chinese scriptures. This is the subject of the question the emperor asked Bodhidharma: "What is the First Principle?" Bodhidharma said, "I don't know." "I don't know" is the First Principle. — Shunryu Suzuki

To find perfect composure in the midst of change is to find nirvana. — Shunryu Suzuki

Take care of things, and they will take care of you. — Shunryu Suzuki

Although we have no actual written communications from the world of emptiness, we have some hints or suggestions about what is going on in that world, and that is, you might say, enlightenment. When you see plum blossoms or hear the sound of a small stone hitting bamboo, that is a letter from the world of emptiness. — Shunryu Suzuki

I discovered that it is necessary, absolutely necessary, to believe in nothing. That is, we have to believe in something which has no form and no color--something which exists before all forms and colors appear... No matter what god or doctrine you believe in, if you become attached to it, your belief will be based more or less on a self-centered idea. — Shunryu Suzuki

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

A garden is never finished. — Shunryu Suzuki

An enlightened person does not ignore things and does not stick to things, not even to the truth. — Shunryu Suzuki

If it is raining out, do not walk fast, because it is raining everywhere. — Shunryu Suzuki

For Zen students a weed is a treasure. With this attitude, whatever you do, life becomes an art. — Shunryu Suzuki

To express yourself as you are, without any intentional, fancy way of adjusting yourself, is the most important thing. — Shunryu Suzuki

If you think you will get something from practicing zazen, already you are involved in impure practice. — Shunryu Suzuki

How much 'ego' do you need? Just enough so that you don't step in front of a bus. — Shunryu Suzuki

A flower falls, even though we love it; and a weed grows, even though we do not love it....In this way our life should be understood. Then there is no problem. — Shunryu Suzuki

As long as we have some definite idea about or some hope in the future, we cannot really be serious with the moment that exists right now. — Shunryu Suzuki

You may say that things happen just by chance, but I don't feel that way. — Shunryu Suzuki

In reflecting on our problems, we should include ourselves. — Shunryu Suzuki

We die, and we do not die. — Shunryu Suzuki

Hell is not punishment, it's training. — Shunryu Suzuki

Religion is not any particular teaching. Religion is everywhere. — Shunryu Suzuki

Enlightenment is not a complete remedy. — Shunryu Suzuki

Everything you do is right, nothing you do is wrong, yet you must still make ceaseless effort. — Shunryu Suzuki

Life and death are the same thing. When we realize this fact, we have no fear of death anymore, nor actual difficulty in our life. — Shunryu Suzuki

No teaching could be more direct than just to sit down. — Shunryu Suzuki

We should not be just a fan of dragons; we should always be the dragon himself. Then we will not be afraid of any dragon. — Shunryu Suzuki

The way that helps will not be the same; it changes according to the situation. — Shunryu Suzuki

The purpose of studying Buddhism is not to study Buddhism, but to study ourselves. — Shunryu Suzuki

Time goes from present to past. — Shunryu Suzuki

The purpose of our practice is just to be yourself. — Shunryu Suzuki

There will always be war, but we must always work to oppose it. — Shunryu Suzuki

Instead of respecting things, we want to use them for ourselves and if it is difficult to use them, we want to conquer them. — Shunryu Suzuki

If you continue this simple practice every day, you will obtain some wonderful power. Before you attain it, it is something wonderful, but after you attain it, it is nothing special. — Shunryu Suzuki

Only when you understand people, they may understand you. So even though you do not say anything, if you understand people there is some communication. — Shunryu Suzuki

Life Lessons by Shunryu Suzuki

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  1. Shunryu Suzuki taught the importance of living in the present moment and embracing simplicity. He encouraged his students to focus on the present and to find joy in the small moments of life.
  2. He also taught the importance of having an open mind and being willing to learn from others. He believed that all people have something to teach us, and that we should be open to learning from everyone.
  3. Finally, he emphasized the importance of taking time for self-reflection and meditation, as this can help us to gain clarity and insight into our lives.

In Conclusion

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