eMirror Vol 22, No. 3 (2018-01-19)


Photograph by Ven. Saigyo Cross tando

eMirror Vol 22, No. 3

Friday, January 19th, 2018
Edited by Ven. Jinmyo Renge osho

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

Quotes from teisho are run sequentially in the eMirror         

        In his Sandōkai he [Shitou] wrote:

        Ultimate and relative: a box and its lid.
        Ultimate and relative: two arrows meet in midair.

        Bringing together what is seamlessly whole, we unfold ourselves as all beings and as no one at all. The ultimate, or the Aware Space which is active as all that is, is not opposed to that which arises within it. And that which arises within it is completely intimate with that Aware Space. They fit together.
        Now actually I was somewhat confused about these lines when Roshi and I were translating them. In Japanese, they are: "Jison sureba kangai gasshi". Jison means "thing" or "event", "relative" or "content"; and sureba kangai gasshi means "box and lid". So it doesn't say "ultimate" at all anywhere. So I thought it meant something like, "As for things, they work together like a box and its lid: everything's okay, there's no problem. Everything fits together". And as for the next line: "Ri ōzureba senpō sasō". Again, it doesn't say ji or "relative", and so I thought it meant something like, "As for the ultimate, strike it in midair with…", and, it could be any kind of pointed thing. To understand the ultimate, it's right here at every point in space: just reach out. Any place that you strike with the sharp edge of insight opens and reveals that in which everything arises.
        But Joshu roshi said that in the first line ri or "ultimate" is implied and in the second line ji or "relative" is implied. And so the lines actually mean: "Ultimate and relative: a box and its lid. Ultimate and relative: two arrows meet in midair."              
        The phrase "two arrows meeting in midair" is itself quite striking. It's a reference that Shitou is making to a phrase from a Daoist classic known as the Leizi 列子 in the Tang Wen 汤问 chapter. In there there is a story about a teacher and student. The teacher's name was Feiwei, or, in the Japanese translation, Higi; and the student was Jichang and in Japanese Kisho. Now Hige was a teacher of archery. Kisho studied with him, mastered his techniques, and then decided that if you were to only get rid of his teacher then there'd be no one that could compete with him. So one day, as Higi was strolling about the countryside, near a crossroads Kisho let loose an arrow. Hige instantly drew his bow and shot off another arrow, which struck Kisho's arrow from the air. The student had mastered the technique, but for the teacher there was no technique: it was simply an expression of spontaneous activity.
        And of course everything is an expression of spontaneous activity – there is no “thing” that “does” anything at all. Everything is much more intimate than the relationship between a box and a lid. And this Intimacy is what we are and it is what this practice is.

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, continuing teisho 4: "The Root of Your Life," September 16th, 1996 in "Studying the Mystery: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Shitou Xiqian's Sandōkai"


Upcoming Events


Fusatsu: January 31st, February 14th and 28th. 

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.

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

Introduction to Zen Workshop
The next Introduction to Zen Workshop will take place at Dainen-ji on Saturday, February 3rd. For more information please see: https://wwzc.org/introduction-zen-workshop-ottawa 
For information concerning our Long-distance Training Program, please visit this Web Page: https://wwzc.org/long-distance-training-program 

Cancelled General Sitting
The Monday, February 12th, 7:30 p.m. general sitting is cancelled due to O-sesshin.

Cancelled Associate Sitting
The Thursday, February 15th, 7:30 p.m. associate sitting is cancelled due to O-sesshin.

Nehan O-sesshin
The Nehan O-sesshin will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, February 9th, and will end on Friday, February 16th,  at noon. Formal students are reminded to send their schedules to schedule at wwzc dot org as soon as is possible.
On Saturday, February 10th, associate and general students may attend a sitting held in the Zendo. Arrival time is 9:15 a.m. (in time for First Bell). The sitting ends at 11:30 a.m. Students attending 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.


Michael Nisch sat a half-day retreat on Saturday, January 13th at his home in Ulm, Germany. Elizabeth Eve sat a one-day retreat on Tuesday, January 16th at her home in Halifax, Nova Scotia. 

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.


Recorded Teachings Schedule

  • Saturday, January 20th general sitting: “The Primordially Awakened Way”: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji's "Kobutsu-shin": “Fences, Walls, Tiles, Stones” (6 of 8)
  • Sunday, January 21st formal sitting: SAkN “Root Cycle Two” by Ven. Anzan Hoshin: “The Energy of Framing” (teisho 3 of 3)
  • Monday, January 22nd general sitting: “Bodhidharma’s Eyes” by Ven. Anzan Hoshin: “Robe and Bowl” (8 of 13)
  • Thursday, January 25th associate sitting: “Being Breathed” by Ven. Shikai Zuiko o-sensei: “Being Breathed part 2” (Dharma Talk 2 of 4)
  • Saturday, January 27th general sitting: “The Primordially Awakened Way”: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's Commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji's "Kobutsu-shin": “Collapsing, Falling, Dropping” (7 of 8)


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.

WWZC Website  www.wwzc.org

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.



Painted Cakes
(do not satisfy hunger)

by Shikai Zuiko sensei

Continuing on with “Painted Cakes: A Zen Dictionary” a limited edition text written by Anzan Hoshin roshi in 1994.

 Omote no go (J);   Surface words, straightforward words, usual speech. See also “ura no go” and “sogo”. 

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



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:
Cubed atsuage tofu stir-fried with Spanish onion, garlic, red bell pepper, cubanelle and poblano peppers with bulgogi sauce, Xiaoxing wine, soy sauce; Thai white and brown jasmine rice; monastery baechu (Napa cabbage) kimchi.

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Beef chuck roasts braised with mirepoix, garlic, beef stock, red wine; roasted root vegetables (potatoes, carrots, parsnips, celery root) with chopped parsley and extra virgin olive oil; sauteed gai lan (Asian broccoli) with butter and lime.

Thursday Yakuseki:
Cavatappi pasta with sauteed spinach and chickpeas, extra virgin olive oil, white wine, thyme, dried chiles; sauteed quartered cremini mushrooms and chopped red bell peppers, poblano and cubanelle peppers; sauteed bok choy and gai lan with butter.


Gassho (bowing monk)

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 ino:
Thank you to the Roshi and Jinmyo osho for the delicious yakuseki meals prepared Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursday evenings for residents. Thank you to Jinmyo osho for leading the morning sittings when the Roshi has been ill.

From Endai shramon:
Thank you to the Roshi for presenting the teisho series The Lineage of Luminosity, a commentary on Keizan Jokin zenji's "Denkoroku", during Sesshin and O-sesshin over many years. Thank you to Jinmyo osho for leading the sittings during this past Sesshin, as well as providing instruction in Daisan and for preparing all the meals as Tenzo.

From David Gallant:
Thank you to Roshi for leading Fusatsu this week even when not feeling well.  Thank you to Shikai sensei for an unexpected hallway meeting and instruction on simple and practical physical fitness exercises.  Thank you to Jinmyo osho for leading the January Sesshin, for recent daisan, for instruction on managing my schedule, and for encouragement when needed.  Thank you to Mishin ino and Saigyo tando for leading oryoki practice during the January sesshin.  Thank you to Fushin shramon and Endai shramon for facilitating kitchen cleanup during the January Sesshin.

From the Office of the Treasurer:
Thank you to Peter McRae for driving Shikai sensei to Bath Institution for the seven trips in 2017, and for donating the cost of mileage. Thank you to Constantine Tikhonov and Patrick Shannon for donations.


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.

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.

Printer Friendly, PDF & Email