July 2016 Archives


We are on Genzo-e Sesshin this week, studying Dogen’s fascicle Avalokiteshvara. In this talk, Kakumyo explores the interplay of witnessing and immediacy – how close do we get to our own experience? How many kinds of closeness are there? This talk was given Sunday, July 31.

Planting Zen in Siskiyou Square

This week we are on sesshin, with at least 20-30 people participating. Work practice includes gardening, sewing, putting up shelves and the kitchen door, watering, picking fruit, and of course making delicious meals for everyone. Yesterday the Oregon Tradeswomen were back for their second round of framing in the workshop/barn. We sit on the engawa […]

The Pivotal Opportunity of Human Birth

What is the value of a human birth? We are reminded now and then that to be born a human being is special, of high merit. Why? What does this say about other beings? What does it say about how we should be living our lives? This talk was given Sunday, July 24.

Planting Zen in Siskiyou Square

Yesterday we had two different non-profit groups working side by side on the property. Groundworks made raised beds for a community garden space that they will administer. And Oregon Tradeswomen is framing inside the Workshop (also known as the Barn). They will be coming one day a week for a month. Wednesday’s work party saw […]

Waking Up with the Morning News

What does it mean to practice with the daily news that arrives on the doorstep (or laptop) every day – tragedies from Orlando to Istanbul back to Dallas along with endless opinions and updates – and then return to our daily activity? Are we aware of our karmic habits receiving breaking news events and the […]

Identity and Belonging

Many of us find a sense of identity in being part of a group, a family, a tribe. But sometimes conflict arises when we want our own independent identity and distrust the tendency to succumb to group-think. This conflict leads right to the central koan that we all grapple with – Who Am I? To […]

Planting Zen in Siskiyou Square

At long last, we now have our own mailbox on the property and have notified the post office to begin delivering and picking up mail from that box. We are beginning the process of updating our stationery and web site so that mail can come directly to us on the property. We will likely keep […]

Balloon GPS Mapping

Look! Up in the Sky! It’s a bird! It’s a – uh – helium balloon??? Yes, it’s a helium balloon. It’s green, and floating high above Siskiyou Square, with a camera, attached to a tether held by PSU Geology students. They are studying GPS mapping, and are using our property as a training project. We […]

Becoming Buddha Bit by Bit: the Path of Discernment, part 2

Finding our way through life decisions and the spiritual quest means clarifying our ideals and aspirations. Rarely can we see very far into the future but we can find inner and outer guidance. This talk was given on Sunday, July 3.

Planting Zen in Siskiyou Square

We are finishing this stage of the “barn” (workshop) this week. All of the pieces are up, and Wednesday the repetitive “brrrrrrp, brrrrrrrp” went on all day long as volunteers tightened nuts and bolts. Kakumyo and Fujaku removed supports and scaffolding, and you can finally see how big it really is. In a few weeks, […]

Return of Monthly Sangha Movie Nights!

Held one Saturday evening each month, Movie Night is a chance to practice the dharma in an enjoyable way by gathering to watch a movie, snack on treats, and participate in a short discussion about the dharma points of the movie. We are currently looking for movie presenters who would be willing to bring a […]

Classes for Fall

Already?! Well, some people like to plan ahead, and it’s not a bad idea to start thinking now of what classes you might be interested in. Regular Wednesday night classes, open to everyone, are September 7-October 5 – “Song of the Grass Hut,” taught by Fumyo October 12-November 30 – Foundational Teachings, taught by Gyokuko […]