Recording Category: Dharma Talks

Kaishin’s student talk focuses on the mandala model that informs our organizational structure. The mandala comes to us from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, which is distinct in key ways from Zen. Within the Tibetan tradition the mandala provides a conceptual model for the energetic and inter-dependent underpinning of the human psyche. Kaishin considers a few… Read more »

Gyokuko works with the image of an eclipse, particularly at the stage of totality. As we find what is ours to do, searching for wholeness, we need to align both spatially and temporally in order to actualize it.

Sometimes it can be hard to receive a significant gift graciously. We squirm, we deflect, we point out pitfalls, we imagine inadequacies, both in the gift, and in our worthiness. The teachings of the third turning of the wheel that describe our buddha nature, are one of these significant gifts. Kakumyo explores this symptom and… Read more »

Our practice includes the big “yes” of acceptance and the big “no” of impermanence. Our daily lives also include yes and no, as we choose how to meet conditions. We are in a time of uncertainty, intense emotion and cultural confusion. Many people are wondering how best to respond to the political situation. How does… Read more »

Inspired by Dogen’s Dharma Hall Discourse #68, “Jumping and Stumbling in a Fragrant World,” Bukkai will examine the life of practice of an ordinary bodhisattva in this 21st century world.

Before we turn completely toward spring, it seems useful to pay attention to the winter just past to see what it has taught us. Genko looks back at the challenging weather, illness, and darkness with curiosity, and is also interested in hearing from others what they have learned.

Ango has begun again and so the bell rings for zazen. We are all called to intensify our practice and go deeper. How do we answer the call? Dip a toe? Dive in headfirst? Pretend deafness?

Bukkai says: from the Buddha’s time to our present day, finding examples is simple but following examples is not easy. On this day we also celebrated Nehan Festival, which commemorates the Buddha’s most profound teaching, offered on his deathbed.

This coming week, our sangha will launch its first Daijukai in the new Sodo. The community is invited to participate in a series of rare ceremonies throughout the week that express the breadth and depth of Zen path of training. The open retreat culminates in a precept ceremony the following Sunday where several students will… Read more »

Kakumyo offers a preview of one of the themes of the upcoming Prajnaparamita (perfection of wisdom) seminary class. He looks at the core Buddhist teaching that everything is changing, the process of coming to deeper appreciation of this fact, and what it means for navigating the world.

Bukkai takes a risk and talks about joy, in a talk that is part lecture from Buddhist sources and part practice advice and instruction.

Dharma Rain’s Sewing Master Genko Rainwater shares some of the research that has contributed to the Zen Sewing Study Group meeting on Tuesday nights. There’s a lot of interesting history behind the various kinds of robes that we wear. Beyond that, she will look at the practice of wearing robes (including rakusus and wagessas), the… Read more »

One of the attachments that many of us work hard to satisfy is an aversion to failure. This is a particularly interesting attachment for several reasons. This Sunday, Kakumyo will explore why, and make a dharmic case for failure as a crucial ingredient in one’s spiritual path.

This 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… Read more »

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… Read more »

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?

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