Dharma Rain Blog

On Chickens and Eggs

bonelesschickenThis Sunday, Genko explores bodhicitta, or Way-Seeking Mind. A few months ago, someone asked where it comes from, which brings to mind the old koan: “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?”

What is bodhicitta? Is it something we cultivate? Something that just happens if we sit still long enough? Where is it, and where do we find it? How does it fit with other aspects of our practice?

Join us this Sunday, December 4, for zazen, sanzen and Genko’s Dharma Talk. Genko and Jiko offer sanzen.

8:30am Zazen (with optional sanzen)
9:00 Kinhin (walking meditation)
9:10 Zazen
9:40 Full Morning Service
10:10 Break/Announcements
10:30 On Chickens and Eggs
11:45 Informal Community Lunch (vegetarian, no chicken) – all invited.

News at Dharma Rain

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p1201-barnsouthwall-900Visible progress on the barn! Yesterday’s work party did a lot of good work, and the north wall of the barn/workshop is now up. Its shape is clear, showing where window and doors will be. The south wall is well begun. In the Sodo, volunteers added shelves in the pantry to gain more usable storage space.

Having the barn usable will allow us to finally clear out Long Term Storage and have better space for organizing other things now stored in various buildings. It will also provide workshop space as well as a better space for gardening tools.

New Year’s Eve Celebration

nyegraphicNow that our Sodo is completed, for the first time we are able to offer hospitality and have our annual joint New Year’s Eve celebration here this year. Join us and Heart of Wisdom Zen Temple (along with some folks from Great Vow Zen Monastery) here at the Sodo for a wonderful way to bring in the new year.

We begin with a vegetarian potluck at 7pm, and move into sacred dancing, meditation, ceremonies, and end at midnight with formal tea where the priests serve sparkling cider to each person individually. We’d love to have you join us.

Meeting Ill-Will

Kakumyo Lowe-Charde
Kakumyo Lowe-Charde
This Sunday, Kakumyo will explore how we can look at the election in dharmic terms. Who are we now? Personally and collectively we are challenged to respond with clarity and integrity. What support, direction and perspective does Buddhism offer at this time? What might apply to us as individuals, as a temple, as members of a minority religion? This is a emotional and layered topic, so we’ll only pick out specific aspects for examination this week.

This talk was given on Sunday, November 27.

Member Spotlight: Brian Howard

bhoward“Dharma Rain has been a bright pathway for me in discovering the dharma and discovering how Zen practice is such a good thing for my life. The community is so inviting and helpful, it didn’t take long for me to see that this sangha was going to play a very important part in supporting and deepening my practice. I also saw how committed the sangha is to enriching the local community and providing a constant source for learning the principles of Buddhism. I’ve felt very grateful and fortunate to have a place like Dharma Rain. It was important to me to become a member because I wanted to give back and do what I could to help the community prosper and continue its mission.”

Membership is the steady foundation that allows Dharma Rain Zen Center to function on a day-to-day basis, and to continue to offer many of our programs at low or no cost. If you find value in what we offer here, please consider becoming a member. Many levels of membership are available, and signup can be done online.

News from Dharma Rain

p1123-polesign1-900On Wednesday, several people came out from Great Vow Zen Monastery to participate in our regular work practice day. Many got together to help move the tall pole sign from the back of the truck to where it will stand up on its base.
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Ropes were attached so people could hold it while it was seated on its base and secured. Finally, it is up and beautiful.
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Meanwhile, work on the barn framing continues. Joel and Fujaku work hard and steadily on needed tasks, hoping to get the inside framed and the ends enclosed soon.
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It is wonderful to have facilities, including parking, so that we can offer the variety of events you see here on our calendar. Much gratitude to our many donors, benefactors, and volunteers.

We continue to work on finishing details inside and outside the Sodo, as well as on landscaping tasks. Regular Wednesday work parties are a great way to spend time with sangha doing useful things on the property. There are plenty of tasks for everyone who shows up between 9:30am-3pm. We also have a mid-day sit from 11:30am to 12:30pm. If you are around for lunch time (12:30pm), you get lunch for free.

The Pivotal Opportunity of Growing Old

gyoshisept2016A sizable portion of our Sangha could be described as ‘growing old’. For those of us in that demographic, is this just the bad news of deteriorating body and diminishing capabilities or can it also present us with a unique opportunity to deepen our practice? Kyogen once said that there are certain aspects of practice that we can really only do when we get older. Gyoshi will speak to this koan of diminishing and growing, and explore with you the blessings, the challenges, and the practices of elder Zen. He intends that this conversation will offer something to all, no matter what age.

Join us this Sunday, November 20, for zazen, sanzen and Gyoshi’s Dharma Talk. Gyoshi and Bukkai offer sanzen.

8:30am Zazen (with optional sanzen)
9:00 Kinhin (walking meditation)
9:10 Zazen
9:40 Full Morning Service
10:10 Break/Announcements
10:30 The Pivotal Opportunity of Growing Old
11:45 Informal Community Lunch (vegetarian) – all invited.

News at Dharma Rain

p1117-barnwork-900Work continues, slowly, on the barn interior framing, as well as finishing tasks inside the Sodo. The tomato plants are all done and black, but a solitary pumpkin is still ripening. The seasonal changes invite us to turn inward and reflect on the year just past.
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It is wonderful to have facilities, including parking, so that we can offer the variety of events you see here and elsewhere on our calendar. Much gratitude to our many donors, benefactors, and volunteers.

We continue to work on finishing details inside and outside the Sodo, as well as on landscaping and gardening tasks. Regular Wednesday work parties are a great way to spend time with sangha doing useful things on the property. There are plenty of tasks for everyone who shows up between 9:30am-3pm. We also have a mid-day sit from 11:30am to 12:30pm. If you are around for lunch time (12:30pm), you get lunch for free.

Swallowing the Ocean

Sallie Jiko Tisdale
Sallie Jiko Tisdale
Buddhist history is filled with stories of mystical and supernatural power. Dogen said mystical power “is the tea and meals of Buddhists.” What can this mean for our practice today? Are there such things as miracles?

This talk was given Sunday, November 13.

News at Dharma Rain

p1019-benchesgemmonSherman and Gary work on painting benches while Gemmon continues work in the Japanese style garden in front of the Sodo. The benches have been a great addition to the engawa, providing both space to sit and places to store shoes while people are in the building. On sunny days, it’s especially nice to sit outside on the south side, even in November! Here five people enjoy one of our Sunday lunches.

engawa-lunch-by-eikoIt is wonderful to have facilities, including parking, so that we can offer the variety of events you see here and elsewhere on our calendar. Much gratitude to our many donors, benefactors, and volunteers.

We continue to work on finishing details inside and outside the Sodo, as well as on landscaping and gardening tasks. Regular Wednesday work parties are a great way to spend time with sangha doing useful things on the property. There are plenty of tasks for everyone who shows up between 9:30am-3pm. We also have a mid-day sit from 11:30am to 12:30pm. If you are around for lunch time (12:30pm), you get lunch for free.

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