Distinctly Ordinary

by Joan Greenblatt

One summer day I spent an afternoon going through some of the piles of books we have accumulated over the years. Somehow, the book The Training of the Zen Buddhist Monk, by Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki (originally published in 1934), caught my attention. The book opened to the section titled, “Life of Service,” and the following words jumped out at me:

"To serve as a cook in the Zendo life means that the monk has attained some understanding about Zen, for it is one of the . . .

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