Video Page

Below are links to all known to us film from the Suzuki era.
Other films are listed in The-Arts Film and Video on

Cuke Video on YouTube - much easier to use than herein which is more of an archive and info center - in progress (9-30-15). Videos can be played directly on YouTube. Individual film links marked with 🎥 below are to download and play on your own device.

Sunseed - "Rare Footage of the world's most Influential Spiritual Teachers." Sunseed was a film made in 1970 by Amertat Cohen on popular spiritual teachers with a section called Zen in America that focuses on Shunryu Suzuki. It was remastered about 50 years later with voiceover by Peter Coyote.

Tassajara - a meditative portrait - 1997 - a film by Frazer Bradshaw
read how this film came to our attention in 2023

Rite - A 6-minute "tone poem" with film and stills from 1968 at Tassajara.

Zen Mountain Center - KQED 16 mm film - summer 1968 (45:24)  - 1968. Now redone and expanded, presented in full and in segments with slide show and stills. Updated 11-16

Shunryu Suzuki and students at Tassajara - Shunryu Suzuki and Tassajara (1970) presented in full and in segments plus outtakes and stills (9-25-15). Not on YouTube.

San Do Kai - black and white 16 mm no sound in original - of Suzuki giving talk in Tassajara zendo 1970 (15:56) - now in this section is Branches of the Sandokai, the O'Connor and Wenger production with Shunryu Suzuki's voice from the June 3, 1970 lecture synched with excerpts from the film and stills.

Tassajara Spring 68 - A 4.5 minute film made by a guest in the spring of 1968 at Tassajara.

Nona Ransom films from c.1935

Shoganji - the temple where Shunryu Suzuki was born - 1998 video by Mark Petchey [posted 9-19-15]

Mitsu suzuki slide show and stills

Five Shorts made by students at San Francisco State University Cinema Department in 1998 using the source film plus new footage. [all MP4]

🎥 2006 video of Tassajara (10:01) clips from Mel Van Dusen's Present! - Talks of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi at Tassajara Zen Mountain Center (26:18) at Mel Van Dusen's YouTube channel (higher quality video here). It's a very good composite of old and new footage. It includes video synched with audio from three of Suzuki's lectures (69-09-16, 70-06-03 and 68-06-00-V). Also includes a brief talk on Beginner's Mind by Kosho McCall. Most of the footage is available on this page already, but his 2006 video of Tassajara is unique. Put together by Mel Van Dussen. Thanks for the tip to Howie Klein.

The Suzuki footage was taken at Tassajara, Zen Mountain Center, in the summer of 1970, while Suzuki was giving a lecture on the Sandokai. It was 16 millimeter, I believe, with no sound. A skilled video-savvy SFZC student named Timothy O'Conner Fraser under the sage guidance of Michael Wenger synched the audio tape with the lecture. We should get the story on that cause he did a great job.

Need to do a better report on the history of this film. Like who did it. I had always thought that Jack Weller took it, but I think that was wrong. The film was of a June 3rd, 1970, talk, and the talk to Jack's class was June 6th.

You can also see a 2007 interview Mel Van Dusen did with me at his channel, Present! Zen Failure. - dc. Also, a what's new post about this from 2007.

One Particle of Dust (1:14:11) - 2005 - This was a DVD made available by the SFZC under Michael Wenger's supervision. He and Timothy O'Connor Fraser produced it. It included the entire Zen in America, Zen Mt. Center, and Beginner's Mind films and contained much from the Sandokai black and white film with Suzuki's voice from that lecture synched with his image plus stills. The unique material from this film is the excellent Branches of the Sandokai which is now presented as a whole in the Sandokai section above. The entire contents of that DVD are available from links on this page. It's no longer practical or necessary to view it all together though for a while it was the only way for most to view these films outside of a ZC presentation and those were rare. The DVD may still be available from the SFZC Bookstore.

Had the film professionally copied on high quality VHS and Beta back in 2000 or so and around 2008 had it all transferred to high resolution standard US DVD digital both at Fiske Video in Mill Valley, CA. Richard Baker had the Nona Ransom Japan film transferred to video in Colorado. In 2013 had the original film digitized. There had been such deterioration that the older digitizing from hi def video was better in almost every case. But new footage from the Unnamed outtakes was added and discovered the 1968 short film made at Tassajara (which was serindipitously sent to me by the maker a half year later so it's his version with further work we're using here).