This Sunday, February 7, a special ceremony will take the place of the usual Sunday service and Dharma Talk. It includes a procession where the incoming Co-Abbot Pro Tem arrives at the temple, doing bows, intoning dharma phrases, and is greeted by the sangha amidst much ceremonial. The procession includes temple officers and representatives from… Read more »
This Sunday Kakumyo will speak about his upcoming kessei term as part of the preparation for becoming co-abbot. His taking up this challenge suggests a question for all of us: How do we blend the depth of insight and the routine of integrity with the complexities and inadequacies of our embodied lives? Drawing beauty from… Read more »
Once a year we hold an all-night vigil in honor of our founders Keido Chisan and Jiyu Kennet, both of whom died during the first week of November. This year, for the first time, we will hold this vigil in the Sodo, as we carry their work forward. Morning service on Sunday will be a… Read more »
In zen practice we often try ‘to come back to center,’ or ‘to calm down,’ or ‘to open up,’ because if we’re in such a state then our thought, speech and action causes less problems. These kinds of shorthands refer to varieties of experience that we’ve learned to trust. But isn’t that conditioning? A subtle… Read more »
Buddha saw that attachment led to suffering, and taught equanimity as an antidote. He was deeply committed to this effort. It’s easy to lose the deep commitment when we’re trying to lose the attachment. On Sunday we’ll look at how we relate to and practice equanimity, and how the likely mistakes and appropriate corrections look… Read more »
We all share a yearning to feel harmony within ourselves, with our relations, and with the situation around us. We find as we try to express this yearning that the sense of congruence and alignment comes and goes. Stepping onto this path of practice we notice and gradually shift behaviors so that that congruence happens… Read more »
When we’ve tasted the benefits of something that we care about, it’s normal to want to get more of it or make it work better. In the practice sphere, this impulse can show up as trying to figure out the right way to practice: What are the key ingredients to produce compassion, wisdom, equanimity? (And… Read more »
Many Zen metaphors point to the insubstantiality of reality and our attempts to fix it. Zen practice offers a kind of clarity and centeredness to one’s life that comes from a lots of determined looking at what is. But all that looking doesn’t tell us what it is, in fact, it does quite the opposite.… Read more »
Now that we’re sitting on-site, sometimes the zendo is cold in the mornings. Discomfort arises. What then? Buddhism has a long history of mining this dilemma. We’ll look at some of these approaches and how this applies to the rest of life. This talk was given on Sunday, April 12.
Last Sunday we celebrated our annual Nehan Festival, and Gyokuko gave the Dharma Talk. This week Kakumyo picks up two themes that Gyokuko talked about, and explores them further. This talk was given Sunday, February 15.
One of the fruits of spiritual practice is that we trust those around us. It’s not that we become gullible, but we see more layers. It’s important to look at trust because we tend to undervalue its place in our lives. This talk explored who trusts, and where that trust lands, rather than how we… Read more »
If you watch your mind with any regularity, you’ve noticed that awareness is heightened when we realize that things are not as we expect, and is lowered when we perceive things as routine. But, like all generalizations, there are exceptions. Understanding these provides some useful handholds for practice. This talk was given on Sunday, November… Read more »
People often use the metaphor of climbing a mountain when describing spiritual practice. For example: “there are many paths but they lead up the same mountain.” There are number of problems with this view. The main one is that spiritual attainment has many different facets, and we confuse ourselves by rolling them together. “Mountain” might… Read more »
This Dharma Talk is about Gratitude. Kakumyo finds much to be thankful for. The talk was given on Sunday, August 10.
Holding awareness that “This is not mine. This is not my self. This is not what I am” is a classic meditation on anatta, the lack of an independent self. Gradually we learn to hold the self more lightly. But without a self, where does responsibility or integrity land? We’ll explore how agency and choice… Read more »
Shakyamuni encouraged all of us to be a lamp unto ourselves; to steadily notice what is wholesome, and how we are affected, as we try to walk this spiritual path. How does this advice intertwine with Buddhism’s reliance on those who have gone before to point the way? We’re confronted with the choice to engage… Read more »