eMirror Vol 27, No. 48 (2023-12-01)


"Wild Duck Koan" painted by 遂翁元盧 Suiō Genro (1717-1789), LACMA

"Wild Duck Koan" painted by 遂翁元盧 Suiō Genro (1717-1789), LACMA

eMirror Vol 27, No. 48

Friday, December 1st, 2023
Edited by the Practice Council

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

Master Ma grabbed the situation for young Baizhang and yanked him into the space of here and now where there is nowhere for anything to go, nowhere for anything to come from. When it is the time and place for crying, there are tears. When it is the time and place of laughter, there is laughing. Here and now laughs, here and now cries. When it’s gone, it’s gone. When it’s here, it’s here. Baizhang understood what the “it” is that laughs and cries and comes and goes and is right here, right now and “where” it is.

Grabbing a hold of noses and yanking them is not the point of these koan. The point is to see how close you can come to taking hold of the ungraspability of reality and to taking responsibility for it. This is “dotoku” or “expressing the Way”. We express the Way in how we stand, sit, walk, and lie down. The space of our experiencing can be open or closed. If it is closed, it can be opened. If it is open, it can open further. The Way of opening to openness, of opening out as Openness is the Way of the Buddhas and Awakened Ancestors. They have Taught us this wonderful practice of zazen, have developed the forms of oryoki, bowing, chanting, and moving in order that each of you can do this. And I’m not pulling your leg when I say this.

Please, this evening, enjoy yourselves.

-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):  December 13th and 27th.

Rohatsu O-sesshin
The seven-day Rohatsu O-sesshin will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, December 1st, ending  on Friday, December 8th, following Jodo-e (commemorating the Buddha's Awakening).

Combined Sitting on December 2nd
This will be the only sitting open to associate and general students during the Rohatsu O-sesshin (December 1st-8th). First Bell is at 9:15 a.m. The sitting ends at 11:45 a.m. Students are reminded to stay on the first floor.

Cancelled Associate Sittings
On Monday, December 4th, the 7:30 p.m. associate sitting will be cancelled. On Thursday, December 7th, the 7:30 p.m. the associate sitting will be cancelled. 

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.

Introduction to Zen Workshop Ottawa:
The next Introduction to Zen Workshop will take place on Saturday, December 9th, at 1:45 p.m. To register: https://IntroductionToZenWorkshop.eventbrite.ca; for more information please see https://wwzc.org/introduction-zen-workshop-ottawa 

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.

Retreats and Training Sessions

General public student Aaron Ford sat a two-day retreat on Saturday, November 25th and Sunday, November 26th at his home in Calgary, Alberta. Associate student Luis Fumero sat a one-day retreat on Saturday, Nov 25th at Dainen-ji. Artik Chauhan sat a partial retreat on Thursday, November 30th at Dainen-ji. 

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, December 2nd to Saturday, December 9th

Saturday, December 2nd combined sitting: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “The Sunflower” (34 of 71, 8 minutes)  
Saturday, December 9th 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: “Yaoshan's Shout” (21 of 22, 16 minutes) 

Recorded teisho playback during the Rohatsu O-sesshin:

Saturday, December 2nd: SAkN Root Cycle Five: "The End of All Knowledge" (1 of 5, 8 minutes)
Sunday, December 3rd: SAkN Root Cycle Five: "Beyond the Fields" (2 of 5, 25 minutes)
Monday, December 4th: SAkN Root Cycle Five: "The Collapse of SAkN" (3 of 5, 20 minutes)
Tuesday, December 5th: SAkN Root Cycle Five: "Unborn" (4 of 5, 21 minutes)
Wednesday, December 6th: SAkN Root Cycle Five: "Just This" (5 of 5, 13 minutes)
Thursday, December 7th: SAkN The Anatomy of Awakening: "The Anatomy of Awakening" (1 of 9, 18 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: $16,959

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


Tenzo (Japanese characters)

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:
Short-grain brown rice with butter, shoyu, wasabi, and mirin; vegetable soup (vegetable stock, vegan bouillon powder, chopped carrots, leeks, daikon, celery, minced garlic, thyme, white pepper, a drop of low-sodium shoyu; kimchi.

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Mixed grain (Thai sticky rice, calrose rice, arborio rice and pearled barley; battered chicken balls (batter made from all purpose flour, corn starch, finely minced garlic, finely chopped scallions, coriander powder, and salt); ganmodoki (tofu balls made from mashed silken tofu, chopped medium-firm tofu, minced shiseido, seeded red chilies, jalapeno peppers, minced scallions and ginger, egg whites, salt, rice flour) formed into balls, rolled in potato flour and deep-fried); bok choy braised for two and a half minutes in salted water to which a small amount of oil was added. 

Thursday Yakuseki:
Mixed grain garnished with toasted coconut flakes and peanuts; spinach and chickpea soup (spinach stems sauteed in a little butter with white onions, minced garlic, black pepper, salt and Madras curry powder then cooked in vegetable broth and pureed, chickpeas, and a small amount of cream); chopped pineapple.


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

From Mishin godo:
Thank you to Fushin shuso for repairing the skull of "Bob", the small skeleton residing at the moment on a table in the third floor common room that as Shikai o-sensei used to reminds us of Anzan roshi's saying that "no one gets out alive". (Skeletons are traditionally a reminder of birth, old age, sickness, and death, all of which are how life lives, and the Great Matter that we are practising). Thank you to Chantal Maheu, Ian Richard, and Sam MacFarlane for doing sanitizing rounds after morning and evening sittings, especially important with Ottawa's current high rates of Covid. Thank you to students staying after evening sittings to clean the front hallway and to David Gallant for overseeing.

From David Gallant:
Thank you to Jinmyo sensei for instruction on opening to a wider context in my informal practice, which has been especially helpful in navigating complex issues at work this week.

From Artik Chauhan:
Thank you Mishin godo for the practice interview and providing throughout instructions for the retreat. Thank you Jinmyo Sensei and Mishin godo for delicious breakfast and meal."

From Luis Fumero:
I would like to thank the members of the Practice Council for allowing me to participate in a retreat and the Office of the Tenzo. 

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