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Shunryu Suzuki letter to Grahame Petchey 66-11-19

Suzuki letters to Petchey   --  Suzuki Correspondence

Dear Tokunin

I am so pleased with what you accomplished while you were in Japan without my help. I found that you have had very good reputation in Eiheiji and in Antaiji with the unusual help of your wife and mother-in-law. After you left Rinsoin Yagisan came to see me and introduced his daughter who is coming to America next year to study photography. How was your trip through Siberia. It must have been very rough one. Obasan at Rinsoin was always worrying about your to children. When I returned to San Francisco, I found S.F. quite different place. It is so nice and warm here. Please tell your mother in law to come back here. And I found that Zen Center was more active than before. Rev. Katagiri made a very good effort for them. They said that his lectures were very good. Katsuzen-san came back to S.F. but is not going to Mass. Claude joined my order. His Buddhist name is KOKUZAN. His is still in Rinsoin helping my boy. I’m very grateful for his kindness. My boy’s Shinsan-shiki and my Taisan-shiki was held in fine clear weather of Oct. 23rd. It was very beautiful and much more than I thought. Thank you for your help at that time of hard preparation.

Now, at Zen Center, as you might already know, the Tasajara project is going. To Tasajara where you use to camp many Zen Center friends, some time 50, some time 5, are going. Baker said you were the first person from Zen Center to visit that area. Everyone of us is working on the project which is going very well. I have sent a letter with the brochure and its Japanese translation to our [?], Shyumucho, to explain the big event which is already happening in S.F. Richard Baker will give you information about it, but his too busy and I am worrying about his health. I wish you could come back to S.F. quite soon. I think we should be concentrated on this project right now because we have announced about it all over America and Japan. I think in England some people know about it already too. Especially if we fail, Japanese people will not trust us anymore. So for me now TASAJARA PROJECT is a matter of vital concern. And I think I am right. I want you to come back to San Francisco as soon as possible. And I hope your mother-in-law can help us too with the project.

"The establishment of Zen monastery in the wilderness aria near Carmel Valley is one of the important events in the history of religion in America. You are urged to join this oldest ventures - the establishment of a community for the cultivation of the spirit. Only your support will make it possible."

Paul Lee PH.P., Professor of Philosophy, U.C. Santa Cruz


P.S. Will you encourage Kobun-san at Eiheiji to come to S.F. next year for he can stay at Los Altos Zen Center Peninsula Branch, in one of Marian’s room. (I think it was Kobunsan you mentioned about. You said he is planing to stay at Eiheiji for 2, 3 years more.