eMirror Vol 24, No. 46 (2020-11-13)

Ven. Shikai Zuiko O-sensei at Dainen-ji around 2005

Ven. Shikai Zuiko O-sensei at Dainen-ji around 2005

eMirror Vol 24, No. 46

Friday, November 13th, 2020
Edited by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho

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

On Saturday, October 31st, Shikai Zuiko O-sensei died of pneumonia at the Montfort Hospital. Brilliant, fierce, and funny, she was deeply loved and lived a long life of many accomplishments. An artist in different media, she had been a broadcaster and travelled the world. In 1987 she became my student. 
Here is one of the first poems I wrote for her:

one mind,
one body,
no mind,
no body

in this moment
who are you?

what is this moment?

you breathe in and
breathe out



She was the first student to receive monastic ordination and was a trailblazer for many. Here are some autobiographical comments: https://wwzc.org/ven-shikai-zuiko-sensei. As a practice advisor and then Dharma Teacher she continued to travel for many years. She brought our Lineage's Zen to England and Germany, to prisons and universities. Over the past years as her health suffered she stopped travelling but always carried and upheld the Dharma. 

Since her death and up until Saturday, December 19th, monastics and residents at Dainen-ji have been practising the Komyo Shingon. If you have received instruction in this practice you are welcome to join with us in your home practice.

Traditionally in our Lineage the cremated remains of Teachers are cast into the air to become traceless. During this time of the pandemic this will be delayed indefinitely. When it is possible this ceremony will be held and her ashes will be scattered by the water garden that she loved so well. For the time being, her remains are in the Hojo.

Her two best friends, the cats Kitsune and Shindo, are being well cared for.

If you have memories or stories about Shikai sensei that you would like to share then please feel free to write them down. Eventually these will be collected into a "sayings and doings" (yulu or goroku) commemorating her life, practice, and Teaching.

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi

Hojo Renovations

Funds raised to date: $45,740.

Thank you to all for your generous donations to the Hojo Renovation Fund. Your contributions will allow us to properly renovate the Hojo, Abbot's Quarters.  

We have now raised $45,065, slightly more than the amount needed to cover planned expenses for the renovation project. The additional funds raised will go toward the cost of a new window and window screen in the Hojo over the fire escape, replacing one that is many years old and in disrepair. Once we have approval for the window from the City of Ottawa Heritage department, it will provide a properly insulated and safe egress.

We anticipate that the renovation work by Copperstone will be finished by the end of October. Replacing the window may take another couple of months after that.

Upcoming Events

November 18th, December 2nd

November 18th is the Memorial for the death of Anzan Daiko zenji.

The Roshi is currently in an extended period of "self-isolation" due to underlying health issues until the COVID-19 situation clarifies.

Beginning Instruction in Zen Practice
For information concerning our Long-distance Training Program, please visit this Web Page: https://wwzc.org/long-distance-training-program


Congratulations to Daryl David of Ottawa, Ontario who has been accepted by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi as a general student.


Rev. Chiso anagarika sat her weekly semi-retreat on Tuesday, November 10th at her home in the Berkshires. Sophia Stevenson sat a one-day retreat on Sunday, November 8th at her home in Ottawa, Ontario. Chantal Maheu sat a one-day retreat on Wednesday, November 11th at her home in Alymer, Quebec. Elizabeth Eve sat a half-day retreat on Thursday, November 12th at her home in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, it is not possible at this time to schedule retreats in the monastery. If you would like to sit a retreat at home please follow the schedule outlined in this page:  https://wwzc.org/retreat-schedule-public-students. We can arrange for a telephone interview or daisan providing this does not conflict with the sesshin or O-sesshin schedule listed above, under “Upcoming Events”.

Recorded Teachings Schedule

Saturday, November 14th to November 21st

Saturday, November 14th: "Rhythm and Song": Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Dongshan Liangjie's "Hokyo Zanmai": "Practicing Beyond Buddha" (14 of 15)
Sunday, November 15th: SAkN: Being Between Being by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi: "Full Moon Fades" (1 of 6)
Monday, November 16th: “Every Breath You Take” by Ven. Shikai Zuiko o-sensei: “Ascending a Balcony" (Dharma Talk 8)
Thursday, November 19th: "The Four Noble Truths" by Ven. Shikai Zuiko o-sensei: "Grasping" (Dharma Talk 2 of 4)
Saturday, November 21st: "Rhythm and Song": Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Dongshan Liangjie's "Hokyo Zanmai": "But then that's just me" (15 of 15)

Listening to Teisho and Dharma Talks

​Associate and general students should continue to follow the recorded Teachings schedule for the sitting you were attending at the monastery, and listen to that during your home practice.

You can access the online Recorded Teachings Library at wwzc.org/recorded-teachings-schedule. 

You can also use the streaming site at app.wwzc.org to live stream recordings from the online Library. If you have forgotten your password or need assistance with accessing the recorded Teachings, please email schedule@wwzc.org.

Please note that teisho should be listened to in the correct order and with none missed out as themes, metaphors, questions raised and answered evolve in spirals throughout the series.

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.


Photograph of Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Daijozan, mid-1980s, by Ven. Shikai Zuiko sensei
Photograph of Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Daijozan, mid-1980s,
by Ven. Shikai Zuiko sensei


Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi has recently completed translation work on some shorter texts by Eihei Dogen zenji from the Shobogenzo. The work on these particular texts is based upon the literal translations that he worked on with Joshu Dainen roshi at Hakukaze-ji around 1977-78 followed by many years of putting them down, picking them up, and polishing. Naturally, more essential texts such as Uji, Genjokoan, Shinjin Gakudo and some 40 others were completed first and have been given extensive commentaries by the Roshi. This batch of texts includes Baike: Plum Blossoms, Ryugin: Howling Dragon, and Udonge: The Udumbara Blossoming and many others are nearing completion. Many of these will be posted on our website over the next few months.

Newly-Presented Teachings

During the January 2020 Sesshin, Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi presented the following teisho as part of the ongoing series, "The Lineage of Luminosity: Part Two: The Lineage in China”:
          January 11th: “Rujing's Broken Broom of Mu”.
During the December 2019 Rohatsu O-sesshin, Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi presented the following teisho as part of the ongoing series, "The Lineage of Luminosity, Part Two: The Lineage in China”:
          December 2nd: Rujing’s Plum Blossoms Again
          December 3rd: Rujing’s Flower for Pindola
          December 4th: Rujing’s Painting Plum Blossoms
          December 5th: Rujing’s Frogs and Worms
Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi presented the following teisho during the November Sesshin, as part of the ongoing series, "The Lineage of Luminosity: Part Two: The Lineage in China”:
          November 9th: Rujing and the Old Plum Tree

Newly Posted Transcript on the WWZC Website

"Zen is Not Kidding" by Shikai Zuiko sensei https://wwzc.org/dharma-text/zen-not-kidding

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
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


Ma Ka Hannya Ha Ra Mitta Shin Gyo, Japanese characters

Painted Cakes
(do not satisfy hunger)

Begun by Ven. Shikai Zuiko sensei
Finished by Rev. Fushin Comeau shramon following her death

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.

Shojo-ki (J) Narrow Path view.

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

Japanese painting of two person eating noodles

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. The following meals were prepared for residents prior to the evening sittings on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

Monday Yakuseki:
Crusty rolls with butter; legume soup (split yellow and green peas, green lentils, red lentils, barley, arborio rice, basmati rice, vegetable stock, tomato paste, red wine vinegar, thyme, smoked paprika, basil, cumin, cayenne, served with grated extra-old cheddar cheese.

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Baguettes with butter; sliced roast pork; coleslaw (green cabbage, carrots, daikon, white onion, mayonnaise, lime juice, horseradish, lots of black pepper. Vegetarian option: baguette with hummus, coleslaw.

Thursday Yakuseki:
Mixed grain (Calrose white rice, Thai rice, arborio rice, pearled barley, basmati and Thai sticky rice); Cantonese smothered tofu (semi-firm tofu coated in flour and then dipped in an egg batter and deep-fried, served with a sauce made from thinly sliced green beans, finely diced carrots, thinly sliced scallions, diced reconstituted shitake mushrooms and their soaking liquid, vegetable stock, shoyu, cayenne, sesame oil, white pepper, thickened with cornstarch); seared green beans, strips of dai gai choy, and snow peas with garlic and lime juice.

Little monks bowing, Japanese drawing

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 Chantal Maheu:
Many thanks to Shikai sensei for meeting me exactly where I was and teaching me with generosity, patience and humour.

From Sarah Goul:
I am grateful to have spent time with Sensei and thankful to Sensei for coffee daisan and formal daisan over the years, as well as for regular telephone daisan and email correspondence since I left Ottawa. I am also thankful to Sensei for many recorded Dharma talks and the book “Freedom and Tyranny”. All of this has clarified my practice.

From Tarik Kaya:
Thank you to Shikai sensei for all her teachings and  daisans. She was a great Zen teacher and deeply cared for her students. She did not stop offering daisan even when she was in the hospital.          

From Alex Groarke:
Thank you to Shikai Zuiko O-sensei for the many gifts you provided freely to all of us. Your deep knowledge, tenaciously fiery compassion, and all-pervasive sense of humour were an oasis. With four words, you exposed a universe of lies and slashed Gordian Knots of delusion. Your radical openness lives on through your teachings and in the oceanic current of students whose lives you changed.
From the Office of the Treasurer:
Thank you to Tarik Kaya, John Maisonneuve, and Constantine Tikhonov for donations in memory of Shikai sensei.