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Merton's Correspondence with:

Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki; D. T. Suzuki; D.T. Suzuki; Suzuki, D. T.; Suzuki, D.T.; Daisetz T. Suzuki

Suzuki, Daisetz Teitaro, 1870-1966  printer


Descriptive Summary

Record Group: Section A - Correspondence
Dates of materials: 1959-1965
Volume: 16 item(s); 23 pg(s)

Scope and Content

Merton began corresponding with D. T. Suzuki to ask some questions about Zen and to send him some quotes from the 4th Century Desert Fathers. These quotes would eventually go into Merton's book The Wisdom of the Desert. He asks Suzuki for his reactions and a possible introduction to the work, seeing a bond between Zen writings and the wisdom of the Christian monks of the desert. Suzuki's text would later be published in Merton's book, Zen and the Birds of Appetite.


Daisetz T. Suzuki was one of the most influential scholars in bringing Zen Buddhism to the West. He was born in Kanazawa, Japan. He taught at universities in Europe, Japan and the United States. Merton rarely traveled during his years at Gethsemani Abbey, but received permission in 1964 to visit Suzuki at Columbia University in New York. (Source: The Hidden Ground of Love, pp. 560-561.)

Usage Guidelines and Restrictions

Please click here for general restrictions concerning Merton's correspondence.

Related Information and Links

See also published letters from Merton to Suzuki in The Hidden Ground of Love, pp. 560-571.

Series List

This Record Sub-Group is not divided into Series and is arranged chronologically.

Container List

#DateFrom/ToFirst LinesPub ✓Notes
 y/m/dMerton Scan ✉ 
1. 1959/03/12 (#01) TL[x] from Merton Perhaps you are accustomed to receiving letters from strangers. I hope so, because I do not wish «detailed view»
2. 1959/03/12 (#02) other[x] from Merton Excerpts from "What Should I Do? - Saying from the Desert Fathers" [-] 1- Abbot Pambo questioned «detailed view»
3. 1959/03/31 TLS[x] to Merton Thank you for your letter of March 12 which interests me very much. Kindly send your MS and allow «detailed view»
4. 1959/04/11 TL[x] from Merton What a pleasure to receive your kind reply to my letter. I was very happy to learn that my «detailed view»
5. 1959/09/25 TLS[x] to Merton Thank you very much for your letter of recent date. I came back late in August from Honolulu after «detailed view»
6. 1959/10/10 TLS[x] to Merton I am in the midst of writing my promised paper for your contemplated book on the Desert Fathers. «detailed view»
7. 1959/10/20 TL[x] to Merton After much delay my paper is finally going under separate cover by this mail to you. I trust my «detailed view»
8. 1959/10/24 TALS[x] from Merton Your article arrived very promptly - yesterday when I returned to the monastery it was already here. «detailed view»
9. 1959/11/22 (#01) TALS[x] from Merton Thank you very much for your sympathetic paper. As you say, one's "intellectual antecedents" are «detailed view»
10. 1959/11/22 (#02) other[x] from Merton I am not well acquainted with all of the Christian literature produced by the learned, talented, ["Final Remarks" by Suzuki] «detailed view»
11. 1959/11/30 TL[x] from Merton I am so glad that you have added a few comments to your article. They are both very wise and I do «detailed view»
12. 1964/06/01 HLS  from Okamura, Mihoko / to Merton Dr Suzuki has asked me to inform you that he will be coming to New York, arriving June 6th [Mihoko Okamura was Suzuki's secretary] «detailed view»
13. 1964/06/11 TAL[c] from Merton I am really delighted to hear that you are in this country and that it is possible for me to meet «detailed view»
14. 1964/10/14 TAL[c] from Merton Two packages of books have arrived and I am most grateful to you for them and for the kind «detailed view»
15. 1965/03/04 TL[c] from Merton This year's Sengai Calendar reached me somehwat [sic] late with its intimations of the treasure ship «detailed view»
16. 1965/05/03 TL[c] from Merton I have been reading a remarkable passage in a Syrian Christian thinker of the 5th century, «detailed view»

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