eMirror Vol 23, No. 29 (2019-07-19)


Woodlock of Eihei Dogen Kigen zenji
Woodlock of Eihei Dogen Kigen zenji

eMirror Vol 23, No. 29

Friday, July 19th, 2019
Edited by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho

The White Wind Zen Community:
An international community practising and teaching Dogen’s Zen since 1985.

We have looked into what the terms “natural wisdom” and “untutored wisdom” mean as Dogen zenji uses them. But another important term is “dharmata” or, in Chinese “faxing” and in Japanese, “hossho.”

There are many important traditional Buddhist technical terms that we use in this practice such as Suchness or immo or tathata; which is the fact that everything just is. Although this means that everything is not about you, they are not being "not about you" either. Another term is emptiness or openness or ku or sunyata; which is the fact that everything just is, empty of your concepts, empty of being solid things out there that are known by a self that is in here, and open as dynamic activities that emerge through interactions and vanish into interactions. So this quality of “just is” does not mean “merely” and the “is” does not fall into our personalized ideas of existence.

In the passage that we have just considered Eihei Dogen zenji says, “Know that we enter the samadhi of dharmata through meeting the sutras or meeting a Master. To enter and receive samadhi as dharmata is what is called natural wisdom.”

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, beginning teisho 2: "What is the Samadhi of Dharmata," Saturday, December 4, 2004 in the teisho series "Essentially Real, commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji’s 'Hossho: Dharmata'."


Upcoming Events

Fusatsu: July 31st, August 14th and August 28th

Samu Weekend: 
The next Samu Weekend is scheduled to take place on Saturday and Sunday, July 27th and 28th. Please pencil these dates into your schedule so that you will be able to attend some or all of this weekend of samu practice. Saigyo tando will be writing soon to students with more details about the activities taking place over the weekend. To register please send an email to Saigyo tando at saigyo dot cross at gmail.com or leave a message on the Zen Centre office answering machine at 613-562-1568.

The Roshi will begin a period of hermitage on Wednesday, July 31st, which will end at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, August 4th, when he leads monastics in Acalanatha Sadhana. 

August Two-day Sesshin:
The August two-day sesshin will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Friday,  August 9th, and will end at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 11th. On Saturday, August 10th there will be a sitting for associate and general students in the Zendo. First Bell is at 9:15. The Sitting will end at 11:40 a.m. Students are reminded to remain on the first floor. 

Dharma Assembly
On Saturday, August 24th, Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho will lead a Dharma Assembly which will begin at 9:30 a.m. (please arrive by 9:15, in time for first Bell) and will end at 9:00 p.m. Dana is $40.00, which includes two meals: lunch and supper. Participants are asked to bring clothing and shoes appropriate for samu practice. To register, please send an email to schedule at wwzc dot org or leave a message on the office answering machine at 562-1568. Dharma Assemblies are open to all students.
Note: The 9:30 a.m. general sitting that would ordinarily take place on August 24th is cancelled owing to the Dharma Assembly.

August 28th is Dogen-ki, the memorial of Eihei Dogen zenji's death.


Leonardo Nobrega sat a two-day retreat from Friday, July 5th to Sunday, July 7th. David Gallant sat a two and a half-day retreat from Saturday, July 6th to Monday, July 8th. Jean-Francois St-Louis sat a two-day retreat on Saturday, July 6th and Sunday, July 7th. Tarik Kaya sat a one-day retreat on Saturday, July 6th. Deshi Isshin began a three-day retreat on Wednesday, July 10th, which concludes on Friday, July 12th. Elizabeth Eve sat a partial retreat on Saturday July 6, from 6 a.m to 6 p.m, at her home in Halifax.

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 schedule@wwzc.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.


Newly presented teisho

During Yaza on Saturday, July 13th, Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi presented the teisho “Yaza: The Buddha and the Lies”.

Recorded Teachings Schedule

  • Saturday, July 20th: “Flowers and Clouds” by Ven. Anzan Hoshin: "The Fire Within" (5 of 12)
  • Monday, July 22nd: "Rhythm and Song": Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Dongshan Liangjie's "Hokyo Zanmai": "The White Mould Sutra" (4 of 15)
  • Thursday, July 25th: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Inside and Outside” (10 of 71)
  • Saturday, July 27th: “Flowers and Clouds” by Ven. Anzan Hoshin: “Welcome to the World” (6 of 12)

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.

Help Required with Archiving Project

We would like assistance from students to work on an archiving project which has been underway for a number of years. Approximately 100 recordings of teisho and Dharma Talks presented by the Roshi in the late 1980's and early 1990's are still not available to students on our web-site. These were recordings were made on audio cassette. The process for preserving these cassette recordings and making them available to students is as follows:

  • Transfer the cassette recording to a digital format
  • Edit the single digital files from each cassette side to separate the presentations.
  • Clean up the quality of the recording as much as possible using computer software and in the cases of a recording being of very poor playback quality, using the services of a professional audio restoration company.
  • Rename, digitally tag each presentation and add the recording information to the database.
  • Create archive quality master CD copies of the recordings for long term storage including printing all of the CD case inserts and graphics.
  • Upload completed audio files to the WWZC sound-site so that they are available to students to listen to.

This process is extensive and time consuming, requiring at least 4-5 hours of work for each individual recording. The amount of work required for the monastic sangha to complete this project expediently is not possible, so we are asking for help from the rest of the sangha.

A student would be required to offer regular commitment of time, a block two to three hours weekly is ideal but also a commitment every two weeks would work well. Students would be trained in the work they would be doing and so no specific skill set is needed. 

If you are able to assist with this vital project to preserve the Teachings please write to Mishin ino or Saigyo tando or send a message to WWZC.org. Thank you very much.

WWZC Website


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:

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 saigyo.cross@gmail.com.

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.


Painted Cakes
(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.

Sensei: (J) Traditional term used for a transmitted Zen teacher under fifty or sixty years of age. Most Zen teachers prefer this term, especially if their own teacher is still living or in deference to their memory. It is also common for any teacher of anything in Japan, e.g. martial arts, calligraphy, grade school etc. Translates as “one who has come before” or “first born”. See also Roshi.

Questions can be sent to me, Shikai sensei, at shikai.sensei@gmail.

Sengai spoon

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.

Monday Yakuseki:
Kimchi rice (leftover calrose rice, chopped kimchi, sauteed Spanish onions, minced garlic); daikon and tofu salad (a bed of grated daikon, slivered ginger and chopped scallions, topped with a cube of silken tofu, seasoned with shoyu mixed with roasted chili oil); doenjang jjigae (chopped white onion, minced garlic, ginger, chopped Napa cabbage, shoyu, doenjang [Korean miso] and gojuchang [Korean chili paste]). 

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Cavatappi pasta with garlic butter sauce (chopped white onion, minced garlic, butter, Parmesan cheese, crushed chili flakes, lime juice); sauteed sliced hot Italian sausages with red shepherd bell peppers, yellow bell peppers, poblano peppers, and chunks of Spanish onion; kimchi gazpacho (chopped kimchi, kimchi juice, chopped tomatoes, chopped cucumbers, thinly sliced red onion and tomato juice); ‘pickle’ composed of olives and cubed friulano cheese with lemon zest. Vegetarian option: Pasta with added red kidney beans, served with gazpacho and the pickle dish. 

Thursday Yakuseki:
Potato salad (red and Yukon gold new potatoes, chopped red onion, celery and radishes; finely chopped jalapeno peppers and thinly sliced garlic which were sauteed before adding, capers, sliced black olives, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise); sliced deep-fried tofu seasoned with buffalo wing sauce; salad of red leaf lettuce, radishes, sliced tomatoes, cucumber, thinly sliced white onion, dressed with white balsamic vinegar and grape seed oil. 

Baking by Shikai sensei:
Ginger Sparklies; Vanilla plantain cookies.


Monk in gassho

Thank You

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 Shikai sensei:
Thank you to Ryoshin for a superb lunch in the market; to David Gallant for repairing sandals that “blew”; to Jean-Francois St. Louis for a much appreciated cat consultation.

From Jinmyo osho:
Thank you to the Office of the Shissui for installing a fan in the Dining Hall when the room was being renovated. Thank you to Senbo for providing Media Site access to newly accepted students and for sending out the eMirror each week. Thank you to David Gallant for trimming greens and to Endai shramon for helping with various kitchen tasks. 

From Mishin ino:
Thank you to the Roshi for presenting the Yaza teisho “Yaza: The Buddha and the Lies”. Thank you to Shikai sensei for baking a blueberry-mint tart. Thank you to Jinmyo osho for the delicious chirashizushi prepared for the early morning Yaza meal,  Thank you to David Gallant for taking 2 boxes of paperwork for shredding. Thank you to Claude Schryer for gardening samu.

From Isshin: 
Thank you to the Roshi for your impeccable standards and the many teisho you have presented over the years. Thank you Shikai sensei for refreshments and,in particular, a delicious Queensland ginger cake with whip cream topping. Thank you Jinmyo osho for daisan, for bringing me soup when I wasn’t feeling well - it was very nourishing - and the meals you provided during my retreat.  Thank you Mishin ino for making me breakfast during my retreat and your availability to answer questions. Thank you Saigyo tando for solving my AC problem and for updating me on changes to scheduling.  Thank you to Endai shramon and Fushin shramon for setting up my chair for practice and for the many thoughtful gestures you provide that help students feel comfortable - for example placing the bell to the side so making access to my chair is easier.  

From the Office of the Treasurer:
Thank you to Paula Negraes for a donation towards the upcoming samu weekend, and to Eugenio Lepine for a donation.

Ongoing Project:
"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.