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D. T. Suzuki

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Though perhaps less universally known than such figures as Einstein or Gandhi (who became symbols of our time) Daisetz Suzuki was no less remarkable a man than these. And though his work may not have had such resounding and public effect, he contributed no little to the spiritual and intellectual revolution of our time.
--
Thomas Merton, Zen and the Birds of Appetite. The Abbey of Gethsemani, New Directions, p. 59. (1968)

 
D. T. Suzuki

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One feels of him that there was much he did not understand, but not that there was anything that he was frightened of saying or thinking. I have never been able to feel much liking for Gandhi, but I do not feel sure that as a political thinker he was wrong in the main, nor do I believe that his life was a failure. … One may feel, as I do, a sort of aesthetic distaste for Gandhi, one may reject the claims of sainthood made on his behalf (he never made any such claim himself, by the way), one may also reject sainthood as an ideal and therefore feel that Gandhi's basic aims were anti-human and reactionary: but regarded simply as a politician, and compared with the other leading political figures of our time, how clean a smell he has managed to leave behind!

 
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He was undoubtedly one of the liveliest figures on the British philosophical scene in his time and, when he appeared on it, it was in need of enlivening. He was not a highly original thinker. His impact was due to the brilliance with which he arranged and expressed the ideas he had acquired from others. Perhaps his greatest intellectual virtue was his unremitting adherence to clarity and to rational argument. His work is without allusions, undeveloped suggestions, obscurity, and mannerism. Through his books and his teaching he sets a fine example of intellectual discipline.

 
Alfred Jules Ayer
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