Sesshin with the Buffalo Zen Dharma Community
post by Shea Ikusei Settimi, MRO
The train ride from Rhinecliff to Buffalo took about six hours, with snow along the way whiting-out the view. Gwen Kimu Coe, MRO, was waiting for Zuisei and I at the Amtrak station. We made a brief stop at her house, where her husband Ray Eigen Ball, MRO, was finishing up assigning service positions to the roster of attendees for the Buffalo Zen Dharma Community’s (BZDC) annual sesshin, February 16-19, 2017.
On Saturday, February 11th, a group of 16 gathered at the Temple in Brooklyn to explore the color blue. An Overview of Blue: Introduction to Indigo and Shibori, a day-long workshop led by Robyn Ikyo Love, MRO and Bob Seiyu Lanaghan, MRO, offered an opportunity to explore the history and chemistry of indigo in a very hands-on way. The day started with a brief period of zazen and an invitation to take up working with the materials with a mind of zazen—directly and with awareness of how we handle them, our connection to them and to others.
On Saturday, January 21st, we saw a tremendous outpouring of support from around the US and the world for the rights and well-being of women and all who suffer injustice, discrimination and inequality. We would like to share some of the excitement from this momentous day with you.
The sangha chants the Four Vows during fusatsu, or renewal of vows ceremony.
Shugen Sensei officiated a fusatsu, or renewal of vows ceremony, shortly before midnight on Saturday, December 31st as the Monastery’s Rohatsu Sesshin drew to a close. The ceremony included a talk (video below) on the precepts, or moral and ethical teachings, and Sensei finished by encouraging the sangha to use the final minutes before midnight to reflect on their vow for the New Year.
On Sunday, December 11th, Shugen Sensei officiated a Dharma Successor Welcoming Ceremony for Ron Hogen Green, formally marking the transmission of the dharma to Hogen. This brief, simple ceremony was the culmination of the week-long transmission process, held mostly in private in the Monastery’s Buddha Hall.
Gikon Meets the Sangha in Dharma Encounter
photos by Joel Sansho Benton, MRO
On Sunday, November 20th, at the conclusion of a full and steady Shuso Hossen Sesshin, Chief Disciple Prabu Gikon Vasan offered his first talk and met the sangha in dharma encounter. After several sunny days that barely felt like autumn, Sunday dawned cold and snowy. Shoan, as head liturgist, declared it a most auspicious forecast for the Shuso Hossen Ceremony.
A Dharma Discourse by Shugen Sensei
One week following the US elections, many of us are still reeling with frustration, confusion, sadness, and anger. In the Karaniya Metta Sutta, the Buddha said:
This is what should be done by one who is skilled in goodness
And who knows the path of peace.
Let them be able and upright,
Straightforward and gentle in speech,
Humble and not conceited,
Contented and easily satisfied,
Unburdened with duties and frugal in their ways.
Peaceful and calm and wise and skillful,
Not proud or demanding in nature.
Let them not do the slightest thing
That the wise would later reprove.
Wild Grasses Women’s Sesshin 2016
Post by Kestrel Ali Mills; photos by Annelisse Fifi
It was over a year ago that I left the Monastery after a three-month residency. It was the last day of Spring Ango and Shugen Sensei offered a Dharma Encounter. When the line opened, Shugen said, “Shoan will lead off.”
On Sunday, October 16th, six Mountains and Rivers Order students received The Sixteen Bodhisattva Precepts from Shugen Sensei. The Jukai Ceremony was the culmination of a week of precepts training for these students who have been formally training in the Order for many years.
post by Robyn Ikyo Love, MRO
On Thursday night, after a period of zazen, Shugen Sensei introduced the theme of the Fall Ango Intensive weekend to the participants in the zendo. We would be studying Dogen’s Genjokoan—the Ango theme—but he asked us to examine it through the lens of faith, which he said could be cultivated through a combination of trust, confidence and honesty.