dc misc. index
Early Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind history stuff
ZMBM.net and cuke ZMBM page
The earliest apparently verbatim lecture from Los Altos - no tape but obviously transcribed as he said it. Posted 5-21-08
5-31-13 - Yes - this box was Marian Derby's version I'm pretty sure now.
For one thing it had her name written on it though that could have come
later. But also the minimum editing in it is Marian's style, not Trudy's -
I think. But also, when I wrote all this I forgot that years earlier I'd
copied Marian's final draft of Beginner's Mind. And that's another story
that I'll try to get to soon. There are a few things I need to clear up on
the ZMBM making of story - some of it thanks to a Russian translator or
maybe he's the publisher. I need to clarify that too. - dc
4-23-11 - I probably should redo all this. It's not clear that the box I talk about here was what Trudy Dixon was working with. It could be what Marian Derby was working with though Marian did very minimal edits. Also, Trudy had all of the lectures re-transcribed.
5-17-08 - On finding the transcriptions - further
down on this page.
I think most were transcribed from tape by Marian Derby though some of the later ones might have been someone else in the city like maybe Trudy Dixon. So far I've seen one in which the tape remains though there wasn't a verbatim transcription of it - but I assume upon further inquiry a few more lectures will be found to have existing tapes. I did look into the edited set of lectures I found a few years ago and it is labeled, "MARIAN DERBY’S TRANSCRIPTS OF LOS ALTOS SUZUKI-ROSHI LECTURES (dates unknown)" I think that's the way I got it but I'll have to find the photocopy of them all to make sure - they were in a binder that an old Suzuki student let me copy. That's another story - it took months of begging to get her to let me copy it and until this box was pointed out to me in the library closet I had seen no other copies of these lecture edits. They were included in the box in identical or almost identical form so I think Trudy had Marian's editings. I had heard that they were transcribed again for the book and maybe the apparantly verbatim transcriptions were done by Trudy and not Marian, but the dates on them make me wonder because a lot of them are dated the day after a Thursday so I could see Marian dating them the day she transcribed them. But maybe Trudy transcribed them and used a date on the reel to reel tape box which was often off by a day. Tiny point. Doesn't matter.
In staying up all night at the City Center studying, organizing, and
copying this material, I reached a level of blissful exhaustion in which a
blood vein in the left eye burst so that even yesterday, five days later,
a woman behind a counter asked me what on earth happened to my eye. I'm
subject to that and I've been told it's nothing to worry about. Looks cool
too. That's all for today. Have to hand in two reports tomorrow on the
state of the Shunryu Suzuki lecture archive and the oral and written
history archive with recommendations as to how to proceed. More on this
later. Wonder if I'll sleep tonight.
Went to the City Center of the SFZC every day this week but Monday, working on a report on the Suzuki lecture archive Diana in the library showed me a box in a closet off the library reading room labeled "ZMBM ms." It contained what appear to be verbatim transcriptions of the lectures Trudy Dixon worked from to create Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind - 31 [correction - 48] in all and none of them that I've seen before except in edited form - though we did have the tapes for three of those lectures. I've entered them onto the data base I'm making and there were no lectures for any of those dates but when I get to entering first lines on that column I should find at least those three already in the archive. [Nope I didn't find three - just one]
Also there are Trudy's editing drafts with changes marked right on the transcripts and more finished editings with just titles and no dates. I spent 17 hours - staying up all night - going through, studying, organizing, making three copies of everything but the hand written notes which I'll get to later. I noted what order the various versions were in in the box - she had them divided up into five folders. There was also a folder with some lectures by Dainin Katagiri. I then reordered them putting all versions of each lecture together in chronological order. Most of them were marked "Thursday Morning Lecture" which is when Suzuki went to Los Altos to sit zazen and give a talk with the group there in Marian Derby's home. A lot of the others were dated on a Thursday or the day after a Thursday which I figured meant they were dated on the day the transcription was made.
Next must compare to what I think are Marian Derby's earlier versions of many of these - another and earlier find of a sole remaining copy. Or is that really Marian's version? Am going to look more into this. Marian got Suzuki to let her record his lectures with the idea of making a book. That's how taping his lectures got started. Up to that point that was thought to be a sort of sacrilege because they were for the moment and all.
I noticed that the dates were often the day after a Thursday and realized that that must have been when they were transcribed, not when they were given. That would mean they were dated from Marian's original transcriptions because she's the one who did that. Trudy worked on them later. My understanding was that they were re-transcribed for the book. Maybe that's because Marian's versions were edited. She'd presented them to Richard Baker in book for - very minimally edited and he decided that he and Trudy should do it but he was so busy with the newly opened Tassajara and all that Trudy did almost all the work. Not sure. Must talk to Baker Roshi and go through my prior communications with Marian and then write her about this - and I have to go through a mutual friend. Can't communicate directly with her. It's complicated.
There was a note on the front of the box by former SFZC archivist Bill Redican saying he and recently departed Celeste West had opened it up about eight years ago and that none of the lectures were in the archive. Bill never had time to get back to it. Michael Wenger's name was also involved. There was a card with a note signed "A" to Blanch Hartman from someone who found the box earlier while organizing a storage room. It kept getting forgotten and still there were not copies of anything in it. Michael Wenger's name was in the note too. I think he gave it to Bill who took it to Celeste. But nothing was copied or mentioned or noted elsewhere. As far as I could see, loose this box and loose these lectures.
I'm going to see that all these lectures get transcribed onto disk ASAP.
All but three of the ZMBM tapes are gone. Back when I started working on Suzuki lecture archiving, say twelve years ago, Les Kaye, abbot of the Los Altos Zen Center, gave them to a woman years ago whom he thought was going to take them to the City Center. But she never did. He said Yvonne Rand was really upset with him for doing that. He couldn't remember who it was. I asked Yvonne and she couldn't remember either. I wish I hadn't waited so long to look back into it again. I've gotten a little funding these days to work on this stuff so I've had more time - but still I could have done more. I think that Les should let himself be hypnotized to see if we can bring the memory out of who he gave those tapes to. If you have any idea of how we can find them or any tapes or transcripts of Shunryu Suzuki lectures, let me know: <email@example.com>
A most interesting project. - dc
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