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Poems - Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971)

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Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971)

by badmalthus

waiting for the frog
the old fly
sits in silence





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Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by ocuana on Monday, January 02, 2012 (05:13:10)
How powerful is this for something so simple?
Blimey, it might be because I've just woken up but I didn't know so few words could amplify so loudly.
Will the frog sit in silence one day, just as the fly does?

**Edit**
Just seen this was yours Harry. I understand more now.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (23:43:47)
    I thank you very very much Will.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by FuchsiaFestival! on Monday, January 02, 2012 (07:33:42)
Hmm, very gentle metaphor here used. You've expressed the simple emotion of a (beginner's) mind quite well, I think. Also, an excellent crossover between curiosity and the importance of nature, as if it is expressed from a broader perspective.

However, another part of me feels a sense of laziness, (the reason it is the beginner's mind--because that mind can only see so much, even if it is tranquil--which is beautiful). Is the fly supposed to represent the littler of two qualities or objects?

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (23:50:19)
    Hi Sammi...I like your interpretation. The title is the title of a book on Zen that was printed after he died by his American students...it was the first book on zen that I ever read some 20 years ago. THe entire poem is about the Soto School of Zen which sees satori (enlightenment) as being a gradual thing, unlike the Rinzai School that sees it as sudden.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by deepali on Monday, January 02, 2012 (08:52:10)
pondering on each word, seems the final stage of meditation....when the fly is ready to be taken by the frog...but the title says otherwise.
seems deeper than what i can comprehend...please help.
warm wishes,
D.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (23:57:17)
    Hi Deepali...in zen there is no stages of meditation...there is just meditation...that's what the word zen means...comes from the Chinese word chan...sanskrit Dhyana? Zazen is sitting meditation the experience of which should become part of your daily life...thus zen. Beginners mind is the mind that isn't full of memories...isn't attached and thus can learn...like a child I guess...haha.
    Many many thanks D.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent
      Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
      by deepali on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:12:00)
      Got it. Thanks!
      D.

      | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by rondo on Monday, January 02, 2012 (11:40:54)
thought provoking Very Happy

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (23:58:01)
    I'm glad...a million thanks Ronald.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by kenmoorecowboypoet on Monday, January 02, 2012 (11:51:38)
Ten words speakin' fifteen thousand in our minds. Wow!

wabl
KenMoore
cowboypoet

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (23:58:42)
    Haha...thanks so very much Ken.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by omegapaf on Monday, January 02, 2012 (13:50:57)
took it literally harry, as i'm all metaphoricalled ( is there such a word? ha ha ) out today. as my hound is waiting for our friend mr froggy to wake up from hibernation and keeps staring at my pond waiting...hey, maybe i did get metaphoricalized after all ha ha - splendid, my friend...as always - paul and hound and woodstock and mr froggy.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:00:18)
    What a great word you have come up with Paul Laughing
    Better a frog than a cane toad...a big thanks mate.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by TygerTyger on Monday, January 02, 2012 (15:19:28)
Love the twist with this one. Well done. Pete. LOL .

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:01:18)
    G'day Pete...glad you enjoyed...thanks very much.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by wordsmithwannabe on Monday, January 02, 2012 (15:38:02)
wow, Harry. just, wow...i'm speechless.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:09:39)
    You are very kind Chris...thank you my friend.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by maryanns on Monday, January 02, 2012 (16:30:19)
Picture perfect, Harry...
Cheers, Mary Ann

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:08:44)
    I thank you very very much Mary Ann.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by dav.smith on Monday, January 02, 2012 (16:49:45)
Fav+ 10 Harry. Truly a remarkable Haiku, Are you referring to the scientist Suzuki? As I did enjoy his programs and was un aware of such a loss to the world. Peace be yours dAVE

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:12:45)
    Thank you a million dAVE...no not that Suzuki...very popular name in Japan...like Smith haha...Shunryu was a Zen monk who taught zen in the USA during 60's...Beginner's Mind is a very famous book published by his American students.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent
      Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
      by dav.smith on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:34:56)
      Thanks I shall seek him out. Cheers dAVE

      | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by graphitegirl on Monday, January 02, 2012 (17:09:07)
Just exactly what I like to see. I never grow tired of the frog and fly. Simplistic and meaningful. Awesome write Harry. Michelle

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:13:55)
    I'm a big frog fan...and snails...thank you so very much Michelle.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by Dgdag on Monday, January 02, 2012 (21:20:41)
Hi, I just joined today and was delighted to find this poem. I also practice Buddhism and find the image of the old fly hits close to home. I practice in the Tibetan tradion and just posted a poem on the Jokhang Temple in Lhasa. Reading over both poems I wonder to what extent the traditions we practice influence the style we choose when writing about them? Dan

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:16:11)
    Welcome to GPLand Dan. I will check out your poetry my friend...I actually was introduced to Buddhism via Tibetan School here in Adelaide some 25 years ago. Many thanks for reading my friend.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by Leggolas on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (05:12:01)
Awesome in its simplicity Harry. A real Gem. Fond Regards. Mark.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:17:05)
    Hullo Mark...happy new year. Many many thanks mate.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by butterflyzrfree on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (09:31:37)
Looking forward to his death
the still fly
sits in wisdom.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:18:20)
    The old fly knows that it's coming...haha.
    A great big thanks Gail.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by fogglethorpe on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (16:35:37)
Outstanding..the wisdom of knowing and accepting the inevitable.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:19:00)
    Thank you so very much Hugh.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by Ozymandias on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (16:37:35)
Can't really add to what others have said, but I presume this is a sort of development of the famous Basho haiku, which gives it even more depth. Marvellous work, Harry.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:20:46)
    I do like Basho's use of the frog and satori...splash! Thank you very much Rory.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by BrokenWordsPoet on Tuesday, January 03, 2012 (20:47:32)
I looked at this, this morning before I left home for the day; I wanted to see what others had to say.

Why would a fly look forward to death?
For sure the fly does not want to die.
Does the fly even know it is waiting on the frog?
It is not like someone said, "Wait here fly for the frog.
Flies and frogs are only mechanisms in a clock,
that nature put together.

The still fly sits in wisdom? I think not. Sits smelling for a fresh pile. For sure the fly may get ambushed while waiting; but death is not what the fly is waiting for. We are the only ones waiting on death.

BWP...

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (00:27:49)
    Hullo James...Haha...no the old fly is Suzuki who up until the day before he died in the California still sat in meditation with his students even though his liver was hardly functioning...whenever he was asked if he had experienced satori (enlightenment) he always said no and smiled...so mwhat is the frog? Very Happy
    Many many thanks James.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by Ramonez on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (02:16:27)
Beauty, Harry. Cheers!

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Sunday, January 08, 2012 (21:15:28)
    Hullo Ramon...a great big thanks mate.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by kanica_xD on Wednesday, January 04, 2012 (03:43:09)
Brilliant .

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Sunday, January 08, 2012 (21:14:33)
    A million thanks kanica.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by mamta on Thursday, January 05, 2012 (18:57:38)
WOW!!!

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Sunday, January 08, 2012 (21:13:04)
    Hullo my old friend mamta...thank you.
    Peace...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by marek on Saturday, January 07, 2012 (07:56:15)
Like, what I don't get is like why is the fly silent? I mean like usually ain't they buzzin? And like why is waitin for the frog? Like, has it lost its reason as well as its voice. Lovely, Cheers M.

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Sunday, January 08, 2012 (21:11:55)
    Haha...many many thanks Mark.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by starstruck13 on Monday, January 23, 2012 (11:22:28)
a cute one i liked it kind of makes my mind stop and think a bit..thank you for your comment on my poem

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Monday, January 23, 2012 (23:15:36)
    I am glad it made you think...a big thanks S.
    Peace & Laughter...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by starstruck13 on Thursday, January 26, 2012 (12:16:27)
this is tooo cute

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Thursday, January 26, 2012 (19:58:42)
    Haha...thanks a bunch S.
    Peace & Laughter...Harry

    | Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by doris on Sunday, September 16, 2012 (10:28:16)
I love Suzuki. I almost wrote, "I loved Suzuki", but changed my mind. Beginner's Mind changed the way I saw things in the world. That old fly is dear.

| Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by hypatia on Thursday, December 13, 2012 (20:38:25)
perfection lies within it, tks

| Parent

Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
by zbird on Thursday, September 18, 2014 (19:55:23)
wow! that's all I can say is wow! powerful little poem!

| Parent
    Re: Beginner's Mind (for Shunryu Suzuki 1904-1971) (Score: 1 )
    by badmalthus on Sunday, September 21, 2014 (18:24:47)
    Many thanks Z.
    Cheers...Harry

    | Parent


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