Crooked Cucumber: The Life and Zen Teaching of Shunryu Suzuki
Since the, publication of the landmark Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind 25 years ago, the influence of Shunryu Suzuki has grown extensively. His followers have long hungered for a full portrait of the man whose wisdom touched so many, but until now no book has been published by or about this extraordinary individual. David Chadwick, who studied with Suzuki at the San Francisco Zen Center from 1966 until Suzuki's death in 1971, has interviewed his mentor's family, friends, and disciples and was granted full access to Japanese and American archives. Crooked Cucumber begins with Suzuki's earliest days in Japan, where his teacher nicknamed him Crooked Cucumber, claiming Suzuki was too absent-minded and dim-witted to ever become a successful priest. Chadwick follows Suzuki through his new life in San Francisco amid the cultural upheaval of the '60s, creating a context for his refreshing and profound teaching. Brief, illuminating chapters, with previously unpublished lecture quotes, convey the down-to-earth message of a man who continues to transform countless lives.