eMirror Vol 27, No. 44 (2023-11-03)


"Dogen", sho by Ven. Anzan Hoshin, 1980s

"Dogen", sho by Ven. Anzan Hoshin, 1980s

eMirror Vol 27, No. 44

Friday, November 3rd, 2023
Edited by the Practice Council

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

Sitting, facing the wall in zazen, we face all of the ways in which we turn away. We see how we divert the energy and vivid openness of our own experiencing by seeking to divert ourselves in petty nonsense. We see how cramped and contracted this is. We see how we grasp after and push away moments of openness that emerge in our practice. We see how pointless all of these strategies of attention are. And we release them. Releasing them, we can release ourselves, release things, release sounds, release colours, release sensations into the space which is here and now as here and now.

What Dogen calls “koku” is ungraspable. It is utterly empty of fabrication; utterly open space. Although it is ungraspable, still we must find a way of taking hold of it, of using it in how we live our lives. We take hold of it by letting go at the same time, just as this moment’s coming is also its going. By taking hold of it and letting go simultaneously we can learn how to play with space.

Usual mind can tend to consider space to be a mere absence, a kind of blank nothing in which things stand. When we allow our experiences to be as they are then we find that body and mind and wall and window and tree are not just arising within space, but are themselves spacious. And we find that space is not a blank background on which things occur but is a palpable and dynamic activity which presences as things, as ourselves, as clouds and flowers.

In releasing our heavy-handedness and simple-minded grasping and recoiling, we might at first find that we tend to be too cautious about space; having gotten past grasping at it and commenting on it, we just become kind of hushed and frozen.  But we have to be able to pick up space when we pick up our black bowl of rice, wash space with space when we clean our bowls. We have to embody space in all of the “heres” and “nows” that come and go in this space of “here and now”.

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, Teisho 3: "Not Pulling Your Leg," February 11, 2001, in the series "Playing With Space: Commentaries on Eihei Dogen zenji's Koku”


The Hatto (for formal sittings)
The Hatto (for formal sittings)


The Zendo (for associate and general sittings)

The Zendo (for associate and general sittings)


Practice Schedule and Upcoming Events

Formal Sittings for WWZC Students: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday Mornings The formal sittings begin at 6:00 a.m. You would need to arrive by 5:45 in time for First Bell. The sitting ends at 7:25 with the Chants. Following that there is a Daruma-kata Aiki review which ends at about 7:50. If you need to leave before the kata, please let us know that in advance by sending an email to schedule@wwzc.org.
Saturday Morning General Sitting for WWZC Students: The general sitting begins at 9:30 a.m. You would need to arrive by 9:15 a.m., in time for First Bell. The sitting ends at 11:45 a.m. Some general students attend the 6:00 a.m. Saturday morning formal sitting, stay for breakfast and then attend the general sitting. If you stay for breakfast you will need to make a $5.00 dana contribution for the meal. Proceeds from meals go to White Wind Zen Community.
Monday and Thursday Evening Associate Sittings for WWZC Students: The associate sitting begins at 7:30 p.m. You would need to arrive by 7:15 p.m., in time for First Bell. The sitting ends at 9:10 p.m.
Friday (Hosan): There are no formal sittings scheduled at the monastery on Fridays, but you are expected to sit at home if you have committed to sitting zazen daily.
Sunday Formal Sitting: The Sunday morning formal sittings are reserved for monastics, formal students, and probationary formal students.

Fusatsu (Renewal of Vows):  November 15th and 29th.

Introduction to Zen Workshop Ottawa:
The next Introduction to Zen Workshop will take place on Saturday, November 4th at 1:45 p.m. To register: https://IntroductionToZenWorkshop.eventbrite.ca; for more information please see https://wwzc.org/introduction-zen-workshop-ottawa 

November Two-day Sesshin: 
The November two-day sesshin will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, November 10th and will end at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 12th. Students attending are reminded to send their schedule in as soon as possible. 

The Roshi is continuing an extended period of hermitage due to underlying health issues until the COVID-19 situation clarifies.

Long Distance Training Program:
For students living an hour or more commuting distance from the monastery in Ottawa, please visit this Web Page: https://wwzc.org/long-distance-training-program

What to do if you Arrive After the Sitting Begins

If you arrive after the sitting starts and the door is locked, 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.


Congratulations and deep gassho to Ottawa resident, Harley Monahan, on being accepted as an associate student by the Roshi.

Retreats and Training Sessions

Aaron Ford sat a two-day retreat on Saturday, October 28th and Sunday, October 29th at his home in Calgary, Alberta. Ceri Behar sat a half-day retreat on Sunday, October 29th at his home in Istanbul, Turkey.

If you are a student of Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi and  would like to sit a retreat at Dainen-ji, please email schedule@wwzc.org to register a week in advance. For further information please visit this page: https://wwzc.org/retreats

If you are a public student and would like to sit a retreat at home please follow the schedule outlined in this page:  https://wwzc.org/retreat-schedule-public-students.  After your retreat, please send an email to schedule@wwzc.org to confirm that you sat a retreat and include the duration and location.

If you would like to engage in a training session either at the monastery or at home by aligning with the schedule of the monastery, please read the information on this page: 

Recorded Teachings Schedule

Saturday, November 4th to Saturday, November 11th

Saturday, November 4th general sitting: “Wandering on Medicine Mountain”: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's commentaries on "Medicine Mountain": The Recorded Sayings and Doings of Zen Master Yaoshan Weiyan: “At Rest” (17 of 22, 22 minutes)
Sunday, November 5th formal sitting: SAkN Five Spheres of SAkN by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: "Practising Nothing" (4 of 7,  24 minutes)
Monday, November 6th associate sitting: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Motives” (30 of 71, 13 minutes)
Thursday, November 9th associate sitting: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Motives” (30 of 71, 13 minutes)
Saturday, November 11th general sitting: “Wandering on Medicine Mountain”: Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's commentaries on "Medicine Mountain": The Recorded Sayings and Doings of Zen Master Yaoshan Weiyan: “Gao” (18 of 22, 22minutes)

Recorded teisho to be played during November Sesshin

SAkN Root Cycle Four: Moving in Knowing - "Always Moving" (teisho 5 of 5, 2 minutes) 

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.

Recorded Teachings for Public Access

While most of the online Recorded Teachings library is password-protected and only accessible to students of the Lineage of Zen Master Anzan Hoshin, a small selection of MP3 recordings of teisho are accessible to the public at wwzc.org/recorded-teachings Additional recordings will be uploaded periodically. MP3 recordings of four recorded teisho by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi 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

Translations and Texts

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. Annotation details and successfully conveying them across various document formats are the issue at this point.

Work on Bussho: Buddha Nature, a very long and nuanced text by Dogen zenji, is ongoing.

Roshi is also finishing an update to the Saijo Shingi: The Deportment of Radiance, our manual of monastic training standards which is a supplement to the ancient Eihei Shingi and Keizan Shingi.

White Wind Zen Community Website Update

“Kwannon”: A teisho by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, transcript of a teisho presented on May 6, 1986, at River Road Zendo

“Cultivation of the Ground of Mind”: transcript of a teisho Presented by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Zazen-ji, on June 4, 1989 

The Practice of Boards and Stones” teisho presented by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Zazen-ji, on June 18, 1989

"Difficulty, Strangeness, Beauty": transcript of a Dharma Talk presented by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Zazen-ji, December 13, 1988: https://wwzc.org/dharma-text/difficulty-strangeness-beauty

"Standing in the Rain (Tangaryo)": transcript of Dharma Talk presented by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Zazen-ji, December 15th, 1988: https://wwzc.org/dharma-text/standing-rain-tangaryo

"Snow": transcript of Dharma Talk presented by Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi at Zazen-ji, November 18, 1989: https://wwzc.org/dharma-text/snow

Fundraising 2023: Roofs

Total donated to date: $14,459

After receiving several estimates for the repairs to the remaining areas of the roof, we now know that the total cost will be between $30,000 and $35,000 (depending on when the work begins, as estimates are only good for three to six months and costs keep increasing). All of the other (grey) sections of roof have already been taken care of. We have needed to redo the roofs a section at a time because the costs of replacing them, given the size and extreme angle of our roofs is very high. 

Any contribution that you can make will be gratefully received. 

Thank you and Gassho

Roof Sketch


Bowl and Spoon Enso, Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi


Bowl and Spoon Enso, Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi

Office of the Tenzo

Dogen zenji taught in the Tenzo Kyokun: Instructions for the Tenzo (Tenzo kyokun: Instructions for the Tenzo | White Wind Zen Community) 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 sensei serves as Tenzo and Mishin godo and Saigyo ino offer assistance as tenzo-anja. 

The WWZC does not advocate any particular diet. However all meals prepared during practice events, such as Dharma Assemblies, sesshin, or retreats are vegetarian as most people can eat this. On Tuesday evenings there is an optional meat dish, as some people find that a purely vegetarian diet, especially as they get older, is not sufficient for their health. If you are adhering to a strictly vegan diet, you can write to the tenzo, Jinmyo Renge sensei, at jinmyo.renge@wwzc.org a week prior to attending an event to request vegan foods. If you are lactose intolerant or have allergies to foods, you should write to the tenzo about dietary restrictions a week before attending events. The following meals were prepared on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings:

Monday Yakuseki:
Fettuccine pasta with a roasted cherry tomato sauce (the last of the cherry tomatoes from our rooftop garden roasted with bran oil, chilli flake, rosemary and red balsamic vinegar); sauteed tofu (firm tofu sauteed with butter, smoked paprika, black pepper, sea salt, garlic and onion powder and lime juice until crispy on the outside); gai lan braised for two and a half minutes in salted water with a dash of bran oil, seasoned with Dom’s hot sauce, butter and sea salt; cubed friulano cheese with gherkins.

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Thai white and brown Jasmine rice; Thai peanut curry (coconut oil, red Thai curry paste, tamarind paste, peanut butter, low sodium soy sauce, dark soy sauce, coconut milk, lime juice, chopped daikon, red onion, carrots, sauteed tofu);
For those who wished to supplement their diet with meat or fish: baked basa fillets.
Salad of chopped romaine and leaf lettuce, radicchio, thinly sliced white onion, chopped tomatoes, and thinly sliced celery.
Served with a dressing made from equal parts mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and apple cider vinegar, sweetened with honey.

Thursday Yakuseki:
“Macaroni and cheese” (cooked macaroni combined with a sauce made with a roux blended with cashew milk, soy milk, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, vegan bouillon powder, dried porcini mushrooms, and a block of vegan smoked gouda ‘cheese’, combined with cooked, diced white onion, and topped with panko (bread crumbs) toasted in bran oil); a tomato vegetable soup (diced carrots, celery, onion, leeks, cremini mushrooms, minced garlic, chopped red bell peppers, San Marzano tomatoes, tomato juice, thyme, lots of black pepper); 
Napa cabbage salad (sliced Napa cabbage, thinly sliced white onion, julienned carrots and daikon) with a dressing of  equal parts mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and apple cider vinegar, with a small amount of black pepper and sweetened with honey.


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 sensei at rengezo@gmail dot com, but be sure to type "eMirror” in the subject line.

From Mishin godo:
Thank you to the Roshi and Jinmyo sensei for the ongoing training and instruction provided to practice advisors so that we continue to learn how to clarify students' understanding and practice of basic mindfulness. Thank you to Chantal Maheu for checking the laundry room after morning formal sittings so as to take care of folding and putting away monastery laundry (cleaning cloths, kitchen towels, and Hatto cloths). Thank you to Rowan Russell for archiving samu.

From Saigyo ino: 
Thank you to the Roshi for many striking sho (calligraphies and ink paintings) that adorn the walls of the monastery and for more excellent reading material suggestions. Thank you to Jinmyo sensei for extensive reorganisation of the Long-distance Training Program correspondence documents to ensure students training at a distance receive the best instruction we can offer. Thank you to Fushin shuso for repairs to the workshop labelling machine and to David Gallant for organising improvements to the internet infrastructure in the building. Thank you to Stacey Loyer for tidying in the grounds and planting the native seedlings she has been caring for. Thank you to Tarik Kaya and David Alexander for installing the new cupboard in the first floor washroom and to Challian Christ for continued work on the drywall in the first floor guest room renovation. Thank you to Rowan Russell for cataloguing the Shuryo books and for researching the best ways to deal with the mould found on a couple of books.  

From Jeffrey Wilkins:
Deep gassho and much gratitude to the Roshi for accepting me as a general public student. Thank you to Mishin godo for her continued guidance and insight. 

From Aaron Ford: 
I would like to thank Mishin godo for our practice interview during my recent retreat. She took time and answered all my questions, and even asked me some questions which really helped clarify my practice. I am grateful everyday for the dharma teachers and practice advisors that make this practice possible.   

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