eMirror Vol 25, No. 04 (2021-01-22)

Nanyang Huizhong, woodblock print
Nanyang Huizhong, woodblock print

eMirror Vol 25, No. 4

Friday, January 22nd, 2021
Edited by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho

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

During the time of Sakyamuni, there had been no other Buddha for him to study with and so he was the first to turn the Wheel of the Dharma for the benefit of beings. Dogen points out that the sutras tell also of Buddhas living in infinite infinities of other realms throughout the ten directions. And so it is possible for there to be many Buddhas, numberless Buddhas, in any age and in any moment. In general, we make a distinction between the Buddha as the founder of the Lineage and the Awakened Ones who have continued the Transmission by referring to them as the Ancestors or Busso, Awakened Ancestors. However Dogen wants to loosen that distinction to make his point and this phrase "Kobutsu" lends itself well to his purpose.

And so not only was Huineng of Caoxi an old Buddha; he had several Dharma-heirs and the two most important to us were Qingyuan Xingsi and Nanyue Huairang because these old Buddhas are the Ancestors of the only two Chan Lineages that survived not only until Dogen's time but to this day. Qingyuan's heir Shitou Xiqian is the Ancestor of the Caodong and Soto houses and Nanyue's heir Mazu Jiangxi is the Ancestor of the Linji and Rinzai houses. These old Buddhas not only did not obstruct each other but were intimate with each other, with their students often studying with both of them. "Each has their own mind, their own body, their own radiance, their own realm." Each had their own style of expressing the Dharma and thus renewing the Dharma and this is true of all the old Buddhas.

Dogen makes a passing reference to this story:

"A monk asked, "What is [the Buddha] Vairocana, the original body?"
Master [Nanyang Huizhong] answered, "The old Buddha is long past."

All the old Buddhas have realized that which is long past, never passing, and unsurpassed. And so we now have the precious opportunity to study, practise, realize, and embody the Way of the old Buddhas.

There are Buddhas loose in the world. You can hide from them but there is no safe place in this world. Not only will ordinary old age, sickness, and death inevitably have their way with you but the earth itself is not a safe place. The only safe thing to do is to stop hiding, come out into the open moment, and be as exposed to reality as the old Buddhas have done.

Please, this evening, enjoy yourselves.

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, concluding the teisho "Buddhas Loose in the World", Sunday, February 13th, 1990, at Dainen-ji, in the series "The Primordially Awakened Way: commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji's Kobutsushin: The Old Buddha Mind".

Upcoming Events

January 27th, February 10th, February 24th.

January 22nd is the memorial of the date of death of Daiji Tenku daiosho, who was the Teacher of Joshu Dainen daiosho, both of whom Anzan Hoshin roshi studied with.

Nehan O-sesshin
The Nehan 7-day O-sesshin will begin at 8 p.m. on Friday, February 12th, and will end at noon on Friday, February 19th.

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.

Commemoration of the Buddha’s Death (Nehan-e) February 15th.

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


Rev. Chiso anagarika sat her weekly semi-retreat on Tuesday, January 19th at her home in the Berkshires. Tarik Kaya sat a half-day retreat on Saturday, January 16th at his home in Ottawa, Ontario. Brian Lakeman sat a partial retreat on Sunday, January 17th at his home in Brampton, Ontario. Chantal Maheu sat a one-day retreat on Wednesday, January 20th at her home in Alymer, Quebec.

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, January 23rd to Saturday, January 30th

Saturday, January 23rd: “Turning the Wheel of the Way” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Yaoshan's Chan” (teisho 9 of 44)
Monday, January 25th: “Every Breath You Take” by Ven. Shikai Zuiko o-sensei: “Donning Monastic Robes" (Dharma Talk 18)
Thursday, January 28th: “The Bridge” by Ven. Shikai  Zuiko o-sensei
Saturday, January 30th: “Turning the Wheel of the Way” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Yunju's Bothering” (teisho 10 of 44)

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.


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.

Sravakavada (S): A term used to refer to early Buddhist schools: "Way of the Hearers". It is much less derogatory than "Hinayana". Refer to The Complete Teachings Of Reality, Part One: The Development of Buddhist Psychology.

Posted January 22nd, 2021. New entries are posted every two weeks.


Radishes and its leaves

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 godo and Saigyo ino offer assistance as tenzo-anja. The following meals were prepared for residents on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings this week:

Monday Yakuseki:
Thai white and brown rice; bulgogi tofu (chopped poblano, cubanelle and red peppers, chopped spanish onion and Napa cabbage, cubed firm tofu, minced garlic, ginger and coriander stems, bulgogi sauce, black pepper); quick pickled daikon and carrots ((batonettes of daikon and carrot, white and apple cider vinegar, sugar, chile flakes, salt).

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Mashed potatoes (yukon gold potatoes, milk, whipping cream, salt, pepper); salad of baby arugula, baby spinach and kale, chopped tomatoes, celery, radishes, and white onion; dressing (sesame oil, lime juice, fish sauce). Meat option: roasted chicken thighs (chicken, bulgogi sauce, shoyu, garlic powder, salt, pepper). Vegetarian option: Crispy tofu in barbeque sauce (cubed tofu tossed with shoyu, salt, pepper, garlic powder, dried thyme, cornstarch, then shallow fried with sauce of slivered white onion, chipotle sauce, barbeque sauce, salt, pepper).  

Thursday Yakuseki:
Mushroom-barley soup (chopped cremini and white button mushrooms, spanish onion, celery, carrots, mushroom stock, garlic, dried thyme, butter, olive oil, salt and pepper); croutons (cubes of cheese bread, olive oil, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper); mixed salad (finely sliced Napa cabbage, baby arugula, spinach and kale, slivered white onion, thinly sliced cucumber); dressing (grapeseed oil, red wine vinegar, red balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, dried basil, dried thyme, sugar, salt, pepper).


black and white graphic of hands in gassho inside a circle

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 Mishin godo:
Thank you to Saigyo ino, Fushin shramon, David Gallant, and Leonardo Nobrego for shovelling snow and making sure the front and side paths are kept free of ice. 

From Fushin shramon:
Thank you to the Roshi for the January sesshin. Thank you to Mishin godo and thank you to Saigyo ino for twelve years of leading me in the Daruma-kata aiki.

From the Office of the Treasurer:
Thank you to Graham Mayeda, James Harper, James Caballero, and Frank McCarthy for donations.