Shunryu Suzuki letter to Grahame Petchey 63-10-22
My dear Tokujun
I am very sorry to hear that you are not well. But it will not be the matter of so worried because many of them who enter Eiheiji Monastery become sick and go to a hospital in Fukui. But after they come back to Eiheiji become better. Actually three months are not long enough, for first one month will be wasted. Please fix your mind as if you are staying there for ten years, and you will get accustomed to the monastic life. But the difference between your way of life and Japanese way of life is so great that it may be difficult to ajust yourself to it.
Please relax and do it as much as you can. Even if you come back without doing sessin, I think you have had many valuable experiences which you cannot have otherwise. First of all the sincerity that you determind to go to Eiheiji is the most admirable thing. And I am very pleased with the understanding and help of your wife Poline to let you go and study.
I wrote to Rev. Sato, Kanin-sama to give you a good advice, so please ask him what you should do when you have some difficulty. He is the kindest and the most considerate person.
To study Buddhism is our whole life work. Don’t be concerned to much what you have acquired now. No one knows what you have acquired is good or bad. I think you have learned the most important thing for you.
Your wife is not discouraged at all.
Rev. Sunryu Suzuki
If there is something to ask my boy to do for you, please ask him.