Frozen rain chains by Ven. Mishin Roelofs ino
eMirror Vol 22, No. 48
Friday, November 30th, 2018
Edited by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho
The White Wind Zen Community:
An international community practising and teaching Dogen’s Zen since 1985.
The Buddhas met with beings and gave them instruction and people memorized these instructions and broke them down into lists. The Awakened Ancestors already had the Buddha’s sutras at hand to refer to as a foundation and so could respond directly to beings who could no longer directly understand the Buddha’s instructions.
The next kien mondo concerns Xuansha, the Master whose saying “This world of ten directions is a single bright jewel” became the basis for Dogen’s text “Immo” 恁麼 or “Suchness.”
Once a monk asked Xuansha,1 “Are the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras unnecessary? And what about the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west?”
Xuansha replied, “The Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras are completely unnecessary”.
The monk’s question, “Are the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras unnecessary? And what about the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west?” is based on the common assumption that the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras each represent a branching aspect of a single path while the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west is separate. There is no recognition that the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras are the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west. Therefore, how could the monk know that the eighty-four thousand Dharma-gates are the same as the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west?
We should look into this more closely.
Why are the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras unnecessary? When they are necessary what kind of principle is behind it? If the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions of the sutras are unnecessary is study through practise of the meaning of the First Ancestor’s coming from the west actualized? The monk’s question was not just a mischievous one.
So Dogen says that the Three Paths and Twelve Divisions and the meaning of the Ancestor’s coming from the West are not separate. Both are the expression of a single Reality and a single intent.
1 Xuansha Shibei (Hsuan-sha Shih-pei, Gensha Shibi), 835-90. A Dharma-heir of Xuefeng Yicun. He appears in Blue Cliff Records 22, 56, 88, Records of Silence 81 and in Wumen’s commentary in Gateless Gate 41. See Dogen’s Ikka Myoju, Gyoji, Bukkyo.
-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, continuing teisho 34 "Yes?" Monday, February 16, 2004 in the tesho series "The Thread of the Buddhas," commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji's Bukkyo.
Fusatsu: December 5th and 19th.
The Rohatsu O-sesshin will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 1st, and will end on Saturday, December 8th following Jodo-e (commemorating the Buddha's Awakening).
Cancelled General Sitting
The Monday, December 3rd general sitting that would normally begin at 7:30 p.m. is cancelled as the Rohatsu O-sesshin will be in progress.
Cancelled Associate Sitting
The Thursday, December 6th associate sitting that would normally begin at 7:30 p.m. is cancelled as the Rohatsu O-sesshin will be in progress.
For Associate and General Students:
A morning sitting will take place in the Zendo on Saturday December 1st. The sitting begins at 9:30 a.m. (please arrive by 9:15 in time for first Bell) and ends at 11:30 a.m. Students are reminded to remain on the first floor.
A Note to Preliminary and Public Students Concerning O-sesshin
During an O-sesshin the schedule is such that there is no time to meet face to face with preliminary students or to reply to email correspondence sent by public students. Public students are asked to send their weekly practice journals, as they will be reviewed. But unless there is something that needs an immediate reply, you will not receive an email reply until the week following the O-sesshin.
Jodo-e: December 8th
December 12th is the anniversary of the day on which the Roshi’s Teacher, Ven. Yasuda Joshu Dainen roshi died.
The Roshi will begin a period of hermitage on Monday, December 12th, which will end at 12 a.m. on Saturday, December 15th.
Introduction to Zen Workshop
The next Introduction to Zen Workshop will take place at Dainen-ji on Saturday, December 15th. For more information please see: http://www.wwzc.org/content/introduction-zen-workshop-ottawa
For information concerning our Long-distance Training Program, please visit this Web Page: http://www.wwzc.org/long-distance-training-program
Joya (New Year’s Celebration)
On Monday, December 31st at 10 p.m. until Tuesday, January 1st at 12:00 a.m., we will celebrate Joya or New Year's. Join Zen Master Anzan Hoshin, Ven. Shikai Sensei and Ven. Jinmyo osho and the monastics of the Northern Mountain Order in ringing in the New Year with 108 recitations of the Mahaprajnaparamita Hridaya sutra mantra. Following the sitting there will be an array of shojin-ryori (Zen vegetarian cuisine) dishes for an informal feast. All students are welcome to attend. There is no better way to begin the year. Dana is $25. Please register by sending an email to schedule at WWZC dot org, or telephone the Zen Centre office (613) 562-1568.
What to do if you arrive late for a sitting
You don't need to turn around and go home. Ring the bell once and then sit on the bench on the front porch. If possible, we will come and unlock the door for you right away. If we are in the middle of the chants or listening to a teisho, we will come to let you in as soon as the teisho finishes.
Leonardo Nobrega sat a two-day retreat on Saturday, November 24th and Sunday, November 25th. Shannon Morphew sat a two-day retreat on Sunday, November 25th and Monday, November 26th.
To Schedule a Retreat
Please visit this Web page for information about scheduling a retreat and an explanation of the different kinds of retreat (duration and timing) you can sit: https://wwzc.org/retreats. Please note that retreats should be scheduled one week in advance.
Public students sitting retreats should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm they sat a retreat so that notice of it can be included in the eMirror. Please include the location of the retreat and the duration.
Congratulations and deep gassho to Leonardo Nobrega on being accepted as a probationary formal student by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho-ajari, on Thursday, November 29th. Leonardo began practising as an associate student in May of 2015 and was accepted as a general student in February of 2017. He has also engaged in residential training at the monastery for most of the past year.
Fundraising for roof repair
Fundraising goal: The estimates we have received for this roof work total $30,653.63 for replacement of all three roofs. We hope to engage the contractor to do the work in spring 2019, but this will depend on whether sufficient funds have been collected.
Amount raised to date: $5,880
Three roofs at Dainen-ji are in need of replacement in the next twelve months: the roof of the Osho-ryo at the rear of the building, and the roofs of the bay windows in the first floor library and the covered balcony on the west side.
The roof above the Osho-ryo is currently covered in tar and gravel, an old roofing system that is in need of replacement with a modern membrane. UV light has (dried and) damaged quite a bit of the tar, especially at the edges of the roof, creating a danger of leaks. A leak into the Osho-ryo via the chimney flashing was patched recently. Due to sagging of the roof structure over time, water is pooling in a low spot that is no longer draining properly. This will be remedied with the installation of a new membrane. The old flashing has pulled away from the building and has been repaired many times, as you can see from the photos. Old wires and other fittings need to be removed safely or secured properly.
Detail of Osho-ryo roof showing flashing in poor repair,
unsecured wires, and the deterioration of the old tar and gravel covering
Detail of Osho-ryo roof showing failing flashing
and past patching; green is moss growing on gravel roof surface
The roofs of the bay window of the first-floor library and the covered balcony are made of metal and are very old. They are rusty, and the leaking joints and flashing have been patched with tar many times over the years. These roofs will be replaced with modern shingles or a membrane as suitable. Both roofs have sprouted leaks numerous times in recent years, damaging materials for the suiseki arrangements stored there and putting books and other materials at risk in the first floor library.
Roof of covered balcony on west side of building
showing rusting metal surface and patched seams
Roof of first-floor library bay window showing past patching and rusting metal surface
Recorded Teachings Schedule
- Saturday, December 1st: “Every Breath You Take” by Ven. Shikai Zuiko o-sensei: “Shedding the Clothing of Householders” (Dharma Talk 16)
- Saturday, December 8th: “Without Difficulty”: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's commentaries on Jianzhi Sengcan's “Xinxin Ming: Words on Trusting Awareness”: “Wise Up Down and All Around" (19 of 26)
Missed Sittings and Teisho
If associate students are unable to attend the Thursday evening associate sitting, they may attend one of the general sittings to make up for the sitting they missed. General sittings are held on Monday evenings at 7:30 p.m. (first Bell is at 7:15) and Saturday mornings at 9:30 a.m. (first Bell at 9:15 a.m.). Please send an email to request permission to attend one of these sittings.
Teisho presented at general and associate sittings which are part of a series need to be listened to in the correct order and with none missed out. If you miss a sitting please borrow a copy of the missed teisho from the library or download it from the WWZC Media Site as soon as possible, so that the continuity of what is being presented is not disrupted. The weekly list of recorded teisho played at sittings is posted on the web site at:
Online Access to Recorded Teachings
Students can access the password-protected online Recorded Teachings library on the WWZC website at https://wwzc.org/recorded-teachings or through the streaming site at http://app.wwzc.org. The custom-built media streaming site allows students to live stream recordings from the WWZC Recorded Teachings collection. It is optimized for use on smartphones and tablets, and works with most modern browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. It can also be used on desktops.
Recorded Teachings for Public Access
While most of the online Recorded Teachings library is password-protected and only accessible to students of Zen Master Anzan Hoshin, a small selection of MP3 recordings of teisho are accessible to the public at https://wwzc.org/recorded-teachings. Additional recordings will be uploaded periodically.
MP3 recordings of five teisho are currently available:
- Dharma Position https://wwzc.org/dharma-position
- Eyes See, Ears Hear https://wwzc.org/eyes-see-ears-hear
- Embarrassment https://wwzc.org/embarrassment
- Yaza 2007: Sit Through the Night, the Night is Bright Right Through https://wwzc.org/yaza-2007
- Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi's reading of his translation of Eihei Dogen zenji's “Bendowa: A Talk on Exerting the Way” https://wwzc.org/bendowa-talk-exerting-way
Recent Dharma Talk
On Saturday, September 22nd, Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho-ajari presented "The Whole World is Already Ready", Dharma Talk 2 in the series "All Around, All At Once".
Direct link to transcript of Dharma Talk: https://wwzc.org/dharma-text/all-around-all-once-part-2-whole-world-already-ready
Direct link to MP3 recording (accessible to students): https://wwzc.org/recorded-teachings/all-around-all-once
On Saturday, November 17th, 2018, Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho-ajari presented the Dharma Talk "Unfabricated", Dharma Talk 3 in the series "All Around, All At Once.
Samu on Sundays
Each Sunday afternoon (except during O-sesshin and Sesshin), Caretaking Council (Saigyo tando, Fushin shramon and Endai shramon) do samu from 1:30p.m to 4:30p.m. on the various small projects required around the monastery. There are always a great many tasks that need to be done and so any students are welcome and encouraged to come to Dainen-ji to join the monastics in caretaking practice. If you would like to partake in the samu practice on Sundays please write to Saigyo tando at email@example.com.
(do not satisfy hunger)
by Ven. Shikai Zuiko sensei
Continuing on with “Painted Cakes: A Zen Dictionary” a limited edition text written by Anzan Hoshin roshi in the 1980s and last revised in 1994.
Samadhi (S); Zanmai (J) In general Buddhism, concentration or one pointedness. In Zen, however, samadhi means "whole-heartedness" or sometimes the exertion of Reality itself. In the Zen Community, samadhi means "complete practice" or "mindfulness without hesitation or confusion" or “harmonization” as complete alignment of energies of bodymind with the Field or an aspect of the Field.
Questions can be sent to me, Shikai sensei, at shikai.sensei@gmail.
Office of the Tenzo
Dogen zenji taught in the Tenzokyokun that the work of preparing and serving meals is "a matter for realized monks who have the mind of the Way or by senior disciples who have roused the Way-seeking mind." In alignment with this, part of Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's samu for the Community involves personally overseeing the activities of the ancient office of tenzo. Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho serves as tenzo and Mishin ino and Saigyo tando offer assistance as tenzo-anja.
Meals Served Prior to the Evening Sittings:
White and brown Thai rice; ‘bulgogi tofu’ (deep-fried tofu triangles, chopped red, green, cubanelle peppers, jalapeno peppers, chopped dai gai choy, ginger, Spanish onion, bulgogi sauce); chopped Asian pear with lime juice, chili flakes and toasted cashews.
Tuesday Yakuseki (two menus):
Vegetarian option: deep-fried tofu triangles cooked with salt, black pepper, garlic and onion powder, chili oil and some of the braising liquid from the shitake and crimini mushrooms; calrose and arborio rice (no chicken stock), mixed with spinach leaves and dai gai choy spears; braised shiitake and crimini mushrooms.
For those who wish to supplement their diet with meat: roasted chicken thighs and legs seasoned with salt, black pepper, garlic and onion powder, shoyu, and roasted chili oil; rice and greens (calrose and arborio rice cooked with chicken stock, minced garlic, onion and scallions, finished off in the evening with spinach and dai gai choy spears mixed into it); braised shiitake and crimini mushrooms.
Mixed grain (Thai white rice, Chinese rice, basmati white rice); Sarson Ka Saag: Saag Paneer with Broccoli Rabe, spinach and mustard greens (caramelized diced white and Spanish onions, minced garlic, rapini, mustard greens and spinach leaves chopped into fairly small pieces, seasoned with minced ginger, finely chopped hot finger chilies, jalapeno and poblano peppers, garam masala, ground coriander, ground cumin, a few tablespoons of yogurt; freshly-made paneer (whole milk, lemon juice), topped with sriracha chili sauce; sauteed spinach stems seasoned with butter, cumin, coriander, turmeric and cayenne pepper; raita made from chopped cucumber and vine-ripened tomatoes, mixed with yogurt, seasoned with cardamon, cumin, lots of black pepper.
Baking by Shikai sensei:
Chunky oat chocolate chipper cookies with coconut flour.
If you would like to thank someone for a contribution they have made, please feel free to send an email to Jinmyo osho at rengezo at Gmail dot com, but be sure to type "eMirror" in the subject line.
From Mishin ino:
Thank you to Don Charette for working to remove distortion in the MP3 recordings of Shikai sensei's "The Four Great Vows". Thank you to Leonardo Nobrega and Peter McRae for work to prepare a list of DVDS (movies and tv shows) that will be sold to support the library.
From Saigyo tando:
Thank you to the Roshi for the loan of excellent books. Thank you to Shikai sensei for leading a visit of students from Carleton University to the monastery. Thank you to Jinmyo osho for leading the morning formal sittings and for clarifying the forms used in the practice halls. Thank you to Mishin ino for regular trips to stores for supplies used in meals prepared at Dainen-ji. Thank you to Fushin shramon for work to organize supplies in the furnace room and for preparing the side porch yew tree for winter. Thank you to Endai shramon for weekly Caretaking Council administration. Thank you to Shannon Morphew, Sarah Goul and Hannah Kent for regular weekly samu, to Brandon Smith for cleaning samu and to Peter McRae for archiving.
From Endai shramon:
Thank you to the Roshi and Jinmyo osho for designing the yakuseki meals prepared and served every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday nights by the Tenzo. Thank you to Shikai sensei for meeting with school groups interested in Zen practice: this week, a group of university students from Carleton. Thank you to Saigyo tando for meeting with furnace technicians to arrange for replacement of Dainen-ji's aging 23-year-old unit. Thank you to Fushin shramon for keeping the Dharma board updated on a daily basis.
From Shannon Craig:
Thank you to Jinmyo osho for the informative daisan that helped me through my retreat and delicious meals and for the recorded teachings during my retreat that seemed to mirror our discussion during daisan. Thank you to Mishin ino for practice interview and persistence to keep me on my practice and thank you for the delicious breakfast. Thank you to Saigyo tando for helping me throughout the retreat and giving me samu tasks. Thank you to Leonardo for acting as jikido and helping me during my Saturday retreat. Thank you to Shikai sensei for refreshments and opening the door for me on many occasions and for the recorded teachings that have guided my practice. Thank you to Roshi for accepting me as a general student so that I could benefit from this practice environment and excellent teachers. Thank you for the wealth of recorded teaching that have both made me laugh and cry at times but always propelled my practice.
Letter from Scott Gauthier, Bath Prison
October 6th, 2018 (received November 2018)
Attention: All @ Dainen-ji and White Wind Zen Community.
On this our Sixth Anniversary of your arrival upon request for Practice Instruction to Bath Institution, I am saddened to learn that due to foreseen and unforeseen circumstances, visits to us will no longer be feasible. I wish to thank all who attended; Peter McCrae, Ryoshin, Fushin shramon, Mishin ino and certainly Shikai Zuiko o-sensei. Zen Master Anzan Hoshin roshi, thank you, for allowing these monthly excursions to take place. All who have contributed seen and unseen, heard and unheard, through all your help my practice has grown, thank you.
Trevor has moved on to camp and his parting wish to this writer was to thank all @ White Wind for all their help.
I have come to know some of the teachings of Dogen zenji, the Northern Mountain Order and Gassho Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, and hope to one day arrive at your gate (or door) and be able to thank all personally, but most of all to practice at the root of where I found my beginning...again and the irony of that, is my beginning began at my end, (literally at the end where I take my seat, on my butt). With the prevalent impression that no amount of books can substitute for simply taking my seat each day. I think that’s what most people miss when they start collecting their “Trophy Case of Dharma” to bring them something, anything but the existence they’re living in at that moment. By living in this breath…
Yesterday becomes as insubstantial as smoke…
The essence of tomorrow is unmade.
Thank you Sensei for bestowing upon me the Lamp to WAKE UP!!!
From the Office of the Treasurer:
Thank you to Saigyo tando for a donation towards the new, expandable dining hall table.
"All is Change"
Dainen-ji, being a 140-year-old building, is continuously in need of maintenance and the costs associated with this can be astronomical when such things as porch repairs or exterior painting are needed. This is something that we cannot afford to do, yet must do and so the "All is Change" project has been created. The "All is Change" project is very simple. Most of us have a bowl or a jar or some other kind of container that we keep somewhere at home and fill up with loose change because it's too heavy to carry around. Several hundred dollars has been collected so far both in loose change and Canadian tire money which has been put towards the building maintenance fund. If anyone would like to contribute to this fund, each penny will be appreciated. The “All is Change” container is on the wooden wall shelf under the Sangha Board in the cloak room.