Jundo James Cohen, the founder of the Treeleaf Zendo, was ordained by and received Dharma Transmission from Master Gudo Wafu Nishijima. Jundo is a translator of Japanese and writer, and is a member of the American Zen Teachers Association and the Soto Zen Buddhist Association. He leads sitting groups in both Japan and the United States. Jundo began Zen practice in 1980, has lived in Japan for most years since that time, and was for many years a lay student of Azuma Ikuo Roshi at Soji-ji Dai-Honzan. He is also a retired attorney, married to a lovely Japanese woman who is an Ai-ki-do practitioner, and is the father of (soon to be) two small children, and this believes that the hard borders between ordained priest and householder have long been vanishing in Soto Zen. "Our practice, after all, is for living in the world," he writes.
"Jundo Jim" is most recently the translator of A Heart-to-Heart Chat on Buddhism with Old Master Gudo, a statement of Gudo Nishijima's fundamental Buddhist perspectives published by Windbell. He comments, "The Sangha's name 'Treeleaf' was chosen as each leaf of a tree is single and unique, yet is just the tree itself. So are our lives each separate and unique, but only by perspective. This, life may not go as we might desire, how we think it 'should,' hope it 'would.' That tree does not grow as little leaf may wish, when judged by little longings. But by new ways of seeing, by accepting the wild, we unite with things just-as-they-are, without resistance. We let an old tree be."