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Comments on the letters by DC                               Shunryu Suzuki Letters to others
Reminder notes
for subjects mentioned in more than one letter

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

"I feel a great responsibility for future students of Zen in America." - letter of 67-01-16

Scanned image of letters   |     Typed, slightly edited version of letters with a few notes 

Letter of 64-05-14                         transcribed version                                                 NEW YEAR'S CARD*
praying for Elsie's husband to get well - Katagiri, Fujimoto, Inoue

Letter of 64-09-09                         transcribed version
intent to visit Elsie for first time in Cambridge

Post card of 64-09-17                   transcribed version
[wrong] date and time of arrival  - excited about coming 

Post card of 64-09-29                   transcribed version
items left behind at her house - secret hobby

Post card of 64-10-01                   transcribed version
tells his students about visit to Cambridge

Post card of 64-11-16                   transcribed version
thanks for sending coat and donation

Letter of 64-12-01                        transcribed version
wishes to join Cambridge Buddhist Asso.

Letter of 65-05-22                        transcribed version
about Fujimoto, Yasutani, Inoue and a sesshin

Letter of 65-09-17                       transcribed version                               
details about another planned trip to the East                                         

Letter of 65-12-01                        transcribed version                                
thanks for stuff left behind & donation - about Michiko - Katagiri's wife and son arrive

Letter of 66-01-20                        transcribed version
can Michiko really come back?

Letter of 66-04-20                        transcribed version
writes from nearby of U. of Mass. - thanks for travel money - coming soon

Letter of 66-07-00                        transcribed version
thanks for everything and copies of The Way of Zazen - apology - going to Japan - heartfelt comments on DT Suzuki's passing.

Letter of 67-01-16                        transcribed version   - poor copy, especially second page
More on Michiko - plans for bringing teachers to Tassajara - plan to go East in Feb.

Letter of 67-12-08                        transcribed version - poor copy - written in light blue pencil
about the unusual board [han] he'd sent her - Chino Sensei and sesshin - Tassajara fundraising update and thanks

Card of 69-05-12                        transcribed version
sorry I can't visit you this time - sending a Tassajara stone

Letter of 70-05-16                        transcribed version
reflecting on and remembering their relationship - Tatsugami - Yoshida - I miss you

* New Year's card - The two larger characters at the top right mean "Happy New Year." The characters literally mean "happy" and " spring," the old moon calendar new year beginning in the traditional spring which Japanese ancestors anticipated and celebrated in early February. The characters down the center say "Sokoji - Suzuki Shunryu." The "ji" in Sokoji is obscured and since Sokoji means "San Francisco Temple," it looks like it says "San Francisco - Shunryu Suzuki." Don't know what the bottom character which looks like a hiragana "nu" means. The card is undated. He didn't draw the bird or flowers. - dc

Elsie Mitchell main page         Shunryu Suzuki Letters to others