eMirror Vol 28, No. 3 (2024-01-19)


Dainen-ji front gate

eMirror Vol 28, No. 3

Friday, January 19th, 2024
Edited by the Practice Council

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

Resolving the Great Matter of who we are is taking hold of ungraspability with our own hands and feet and eyes and ears by releasing our ideas about ourselves and the world into the play of presencing which is here and now as us. Then the freshness and vividness of experience is continually renewed by each experience.

The “House style” of how Great Master Ma and his successors lived this was direct and uncompromising. From his Dharma-heir Baizhang came Huangbo and from Huangbo came the fierce Linji. Shigong and Xitang were both exemplars of this style, which is why Dogen raises the situation of this encounter between them as a standard from which we can look into our own understanding of open space and of taking hold of our lives by releasing them into the activity which is here and now. We will see however that he thinks that even this direct style can still fall short, that it is possible for us to come closer.

In the pointing phrases that preface case 23 of the Hekiganroku, Yuanwu says,

Jade is tested by fire, gold by a stone, a sword by a hair, water by a staff. In the school of rag-robed monks, you must know whether a student is deep or shallow, facing forwards or back, through words and phrases, actions and attitudes, coming and going, calling and answering.

What we call koku or daiku or Komyozo or Fudo or Kokuzo cannot be bound within words and stories or ideas. But through what we say and what we mean, understandings and misunderstandings can be drawn forth. Dogen plunges his hands deep into the words and phrases of this koan of grasping space and throws the meanings into the air, shuffles them back and forth and turns them inside out to try to expose to you something of what your own life actually means and who you are, how you experience experiences.

-Ven. Anzan Hoshin roshi, concluding Teisho 5: “The Crunching Together of Space”, February 13, 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):  January 24th, February 7th and 21st.

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.

Introduction to Zen Workshop Ottawa:
The next Introduction to Zen Workshop will take place on Saturday, February 3rd at 1:45 p.m. To register: https://IntroductionToZenWorkshop.eventbrite.ca; for more information please see https://wwzc.org/introduction-zen-workshop-ottawa 

Nehan O-sesshin
The Seven-day Nehan O-sesshin will begin on Friday, February 9th at 8:00 p.m. It will end on Friday, February 16th at noon. 

A Sitting for Associate and General Students During the Nehan O-sesshin:
A combined sitting for associate and general students will take place in the Zendo on Saturday, February 10th. 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.

Cancelled Associate Sitting:
The Monday February 12th associate sitting that would normally take place at 7:30 p.m. is cancelled due to the O-sesshin.

Cancelled Associate Sitting:
The Thursday February 15th associate sitting that would normally take place at 7:30 p.m. is cancelled due to the O-sesshin.

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 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

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, January 20th to Saturday, January 27th

Saturday, January 20th general sitting: "Without Difficulty": Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's commentaries on Jianzhi Sengcan's "Wunan, Bunan. Just Do It!" (4 of 26, 17 minutes)
Sunday, January 21st formal sitting: "SAkN Releasing by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: "Opening...Past...Everything" (5 of 5, 22 minutes)
Monday, January 22nd associate sitting: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Yes, No, Maybe" (41 of 71, 11 minutes)
Thursday, January 25th associate sitting: “Before Thinking: Foundations of Zen Practice” by Zen Master Anzan Hoshin: “Yes, No, Maybe" (41 of 71, 11 minutes)
Saturday, January 27th general sitting: "Without Difficulty": Zen Master Anzan Hoshin's commentaries on Jianzhi Sengcan's "Not For or Against" (5 of 26, 22 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 2024: Roofs

Total donated to date: $19,959

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
Areas of the roof that need repair


Two person eating soba (drawing)

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 during the January two-day sesshin:

: “Rice and eggs” (two eggs fried very gently over easy, served on top of calrose rice with a sauce of shoyu, mirin and wasabi, garnished with shichimi togarashi (Japanese seven-spice powder).
Lunch: White and brown calrose and arborio rice garnished with gomashio (roasted ground sesame seeds and salt); miso shiru (broth made from kombu, slivered ginger, shiro miso, dried shiitake mushrooms, Shanghai bok choy, shoyu, mirin, rice vinegar, cubed silken tofu); takuan and gari.
Supper: Lundberg brown rice with butter and peas; carrot miso soup (cooked and pureed carrots, red apple, tomatoes, white onion, coconut milk, shiro miso, turmeric, cayenne, yogurt); 

: Pancakes (all purpose and whole wheat flour, milk soured with vinegar, baking powder, baking soda, eggs, salt, maple syrup, melted butter); scrambled eggs.
Lunch: Thai white jasmine rice garnished with diced sauteed daikon; spicy seaweed soup (strained miso shiro from the previous day, wakame, sliced ginger, low sodium soy sauce, sesame oil, chilli oil, cubed silken tofu); baechu kimchi.

The following meals were prepared on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings:

Monday Yakuseki: 
Rice cakes made with calrose and arborio rice, mixed with pearled barley; curried split pea soup (split peas, carrots, onions, curry powder, coriander; green salad (Romaine and leaf lettuce, chopped tomatoes, radicchio, thinly sliced red onion) served with a dressing made from equal parts mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and honey, mixed with mango chutney and lime pickle.

Tuesday Yakuseki:
Bow tie pasta with a tomato sauce; baked chicken thighs in a dry rub made with garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, oregano, basil, thyme, black pepper, and olive oil; black olives with cubed friulano cheese. 

Thursday Yakuseki:
Warm naan with butter; Thai peanut curry (chopped poblano and red bell peppers, carrot matchsticks, daikon matchsticks, chopped red and white onion, coconut oil, red Thai curry paste, tamarind paste, peanut butter, low sodium soy sauce, dark soy sauce, coconut milk, lime juice) served with lime wedges, chopped roasted peanuts and fresh coriander; salad of Napa cabbage, shredded carrots and daikon with white onion, served with a dressing made from equal parts mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and apple cider vinegar, mixed with mango chutney and toasted cumin and yellow mustard seeds. 


Monk in gassho - 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 David Gallant:
Thank you to Jinmyo sensei for recent instruction on being transparent to states that arise, and about heavy-handedness that can arise in basic mindfulness practice.

From Rana Annous
Deep thank you and gratitude to Anzan Hoshin roshi for accepting me as an associate student and for the ongoing transmission of the Teachings. Thank you to Mishin godo and Saigyo ino for their welcome and instructions at the Introduction to Zen Workshop, for their clear and useful advice during the practice interviews, for guidance on the forms, for their help during the application process, the encouragement, as well as the joy generating laughs. 

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