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Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki was undoubtedly more influential than any other single individual for the popularization of Zen in the West in the early and mid-20th century and thus an important figure in the globalization of religion. Fluent in English and other languages as well as his native Japanese, his many translations, essays, and lectures helped make Zen a household word by the 1950s.

Although never a Zen priest or monk in the strict sense, Suzuki received intensive Zen training early from the famous monk Shaku Soen, who also represented the tradition at the important World's Parliament of Religions in Chicago in 1893. There, he recommended Suzuki to Paul Carus, a publisher who wanted help in translating Asian spiritual classics. Suzuki spent 1897–1909 in America living and ...

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