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from Shunryu Suzuki lectures - 2014-5
[laughs] = Suzuki laughs [laughter] = students laugh
Things as they are as it is
12-22-14 - Shunryu Suzuki used the phrase "things as it is" a lot. One of the anecdotes in Zen Is Right Here illustrates that he did so on purpose. He also used "things as they are" and so I saw it as him going back and forth. But reading through all of his lectures on shunryusuzuki.com recently, it became more and more clear that he favored "things as it is." In this most complete collection of his lecture transcripts, according to our count, he used "things as it is" 137 times and "things as they are" 31 times. The first instance of the former is in 65-07-27-B which is also one of the first verbatim transcripts from one of the earliest recorded lectures with a surviving audio. I wonder if any of the instances of "things as they are" in versions without audio to check against, were changed by transcribers or editors. Using the New Search Form in shunryusuzuki.com we find 11 instances of "things as they are" from verbatim lectures - and another one in a student question.
Here's the earliest instance found of "things as they are" from Blue Cliff Records-40, Rikko's Heaven And Earth, Dec 1963 [63-12-00].
And here's the first instance found of "things as it is" along with "things as they are" from In our way of Zen, we emphasize the way-seeking mind, Jul 1965 [65-07-27-B] (verbatim transcript). It does sort of seem like he's feeling his way with these usages here.
Neither excerpt edited by DC - posted 12-22-14