Planting Zen in Siskiyou Square

Wednesday’s work practice was presented with the gift of a beautiful sunny day in the midst of a wet, windy week. 17 people came in from Great Vow Zen Monastery to work with us on various projects. (The photo of the courtyard was taken in Thursday morning’s rainy weather.)

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P1120-6-rock-600The courtyard needs to be able to have a fire truck drive on it if needed, but pouring concrete would be expensive. So we are using other materials (many of which are donated) and a lot of volunteer labor, which in addition to being cheaper should also result in a surface that is more pleasing than simple concrete.

P1120-3-engawa-1200The engawa is also moving along, and may be finished during Rohatsu.

Lights are being installed in the Sodo, and heat was turned on Thursday.

P1119-3-solarpanels-600Solar panels were installed a few weeks ago on the south side of the Sodo.

new-bell-600Marta Ferris donated a cloud bell (unpan) to us, which is traditionally used in Japanese temples for calling people to meals.

Note: We emphasize that work on the street is still going on, and Siskiyou Street is still closed. Even though it appears to be done, there is still a lot of construction of various sorts happening on the street, and it won’t be safe to drive on regularly until probably Rohatsu, a couple of weeks away. So please continue to enter the site by coming down 85th Ave from Fremont Drive. We thank you.
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Join Friends of Trees at the Dharma Rain Zen Center this Saturday, November 21, as we continue our efforts to plant this neglected parcel of Northeast Portland. As part of the street-scape improvements, we will be planting street trees along NE Siskiyou Street. Please arrive around 8:45am to be registered and assigned to a crew. The event will start promptly at 9:00am. We provide breakfast snacks and hot chocolate and coffee, as well as gloves, tools and guidance. Please come dressed for the weather and wear sturdy shoes and get ready to have fun!

Dharma Rain has work parties most Wednesdays from about 9:30am to about 3:30pm out toward the Sodo. Most of those days we also do zazen in Uji from 11:30am to 12:25pm, followed by vegetarian lunch at 12:30pm at the 85th house (3155 NE 85th, a block from the main gate).