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Letters and cards sent by Shunryu Suzuki to Elsie Mitchell - 1964 - 1970

Letters table of contents                        Elsie Mitchell main page                              see original                      next

Edited transcription

May 14th, 1964

Dear Mrs. Mitchell,

We are so surprised to hear that your husband suddenly became ill. All of us feel very sorry to know how you feel to have an such an expected event for your healthy husband.

Rev. Katagiri and I, with all our students, offer prayer for your husband every morning after Zazen.* I hope he is better now. I do not want to trouble you, but please let us know how he is.

Thank you very much for your contribution. I am so grateful to have the helpful assistance of Rev. Katagiri.* And I hope I can visit you in near future.

Roshi Fujimoto and Rev. Inoue *, who were very kind to me while I was in Japan last year, have sent me letters. Roshi Fujimoto wishes he could write a letter in English. He will be surprised too when he hears about your husband's illness. He will also pray for your husband.

Hoping for rapid restoration for your husband.

With Gassho,

Rev. Shunryu Suzuki

* offer prayer - This would mean that the morning service included Mr. Mitchell in some way in the eko, dedication, following the Heart Sutra.

* Dainin Katagiri had just arrived to help Suzuki run the temple.

* Rindo Fujimoto Roshi was Elsie's teacher in Japan and one of the few Soto Zen masters that Suzuki greatly admired. Tetsuya Inoue was Elsie's original host when she first went to Japan in 1957 to record the ceremonies at Soto Zen's great training temple, Eiheiji. Fujimoto eventually left his own temple to live at Inoue's. See article on Elsie for more on them. 

For more on Fujimoto, Inoue, and Katagiri see the article on Elsie and The Way of Zazen and The Way of Eiheiji.

Letters table of contents            Elsie Mitchell main page                              see original           next