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Thread: ATTENTION! Our "AT HOME" 2-DAY ROHATSU RETREAT - December 8th & 9th (& HO HO HO!)

  1. #1

    ATTENTION! Our "AT HOME" 2-DAY ROHATSU RETREAT - December 8th & 9th (& HO HO HO!)

    Dear All,

    Just early notice that our "AT HOME" 2-DAY ROHATSU RETREAT is scheduled for the weekend of December 8th & 9th, Saturday and Sunday (Japan Time) via live netcast. We hope that all of our Ango-ers and others will find a way to sit with us. Through a combination of live and "any time" recorded segments, the retreat is designed to be sat any where, in any time zone, even days or weeks later, when you can arrange your schedule. Please have a look at last year's retreat for a taste ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/sit-a-long/w...reeleafat.html

    I (Jundo) will lead the Saturday portion, and Taigu on Sunday. The retreat was originally scheduled for the weekend of December 1st, but I was asked to be Santa Clause again this year by three places, a local Christian Church, the YMCA and a home for the disabled that day (yes, they pick me because I am a rather round jolly fellow with a beard! ), and so would not be available for several hours. For that reason, I hope all are in accord with the date change and helping Santa! It also means that the retreat will be held a few days after the "90 days" of Ango end, but ... perhaps if you missed a few days, you will extend your Ango a bit.


    Our retreat features all aspects of a traditional Soto Zen retreat, including Zazen, Oryoki (in simplified form), more Zazen, Chanting, Samu work practice, more Zazen, talks and much more. Did I mention ... more Zazen? Easy to follow preparations and instructions will be provided everyone in the coming weeks for establishing a retreat space in your own home, and in keeping with other responsibilities you may have (such as a "mom" or "dad").

    If you are concerned about the length of sitting, please take to heart that such retreats ... of 2 or 3 days, a week or two weeks ... are basic and highly recommended in the Zen world, undertaken by just about every Zen Sangha I know. It is a practice not to be missed.

    Anyway, I hope you can be there ... the Zafu is waiting!

    Gassho, Jundo
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-04-2012 at 02:27 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  2. #2
    This is wonderful Jundo and I am excited to be part of this practice. Thank you and I will be there!

    Gassho
    Michael
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  3. #3
    I'll be there/here.
    大山

  4. #4
    Dharma-Santa paid a visit this time last year ...

    The costume is borrowed from the Japanese church, where folks are a few sizes skinnier than me. So, a bit of a tight fit.



    The accompanying post ...

    I am in China today, where Youtube is banned ... so I am not sure if I can post today's sitting or not ....

    But I would like to wish each and all members of Treeleaf, and our "Sit-a-Long" family, a Peaceful Rohatsu, Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah ...

    .... as well as All the Happy Holidays of Peace and Goodwill, whenever and whatever they are ...

    ... and a Very Tranquil and Content 'Just This Very Moment' too, ever new and changing ...


    This also leads to a related topic ...

    Heading home to see family and friends always presents a few special "opportunities for Practice" at this time of year ...

    Meeting family and old friends ... how do you explain to them about "being a Buddhist"?

    You may even start to feel a little guilty for not being part of the religion you were raised in.

    How should we celebrate the holidays with friends and family?

    My answer: Sing all the songs, be with the ones we love ... Celebrate Peace & Joy!
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-04-2012 at 03:03 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  5. #5
    Treeleaf Unsui Dosho's Avatar
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    Jundo,

    I thought I had imagined the retreat was the week before because that's what I had on the calendar! It's ironic because it was going to be the first year the retreat was not the weekend closest to my wife's birthday (the 7th...yes, the day of infamy). But she truly does not mind at all because I don't think she'd trade how practice has benefitted me, her, and our boys for anything in the world.

    I'll be there.

    Gassho,
    Dosho
    Shudo Dosho - Ordained Priest-in-Training
    With your help and guidance from Jundo & Taigu
    I am learning, but please take what I say with a
    grain of salt, especially in matters of the Dharma.

  6. #6
    I'd just like to share a response to a discussion elsewhere about sharing practice with others.. and the benefit of group energy. A person new to Zen wanted to hear from people why they felt it helped ..


    There is a story that before his awakening the Buddha placed a bowl in a stream and said "If I am to succeed in becoming a Buddha today, let this bowl go upstream, if not, let it go downstream.". One way of looking at that story is that Buddhist practice goes against the current of deeply ingrained habit. Sitting can be great at first.. especially if it is in a traditional Zen setting. It feels good to be a part of something new, and to be into something profound. But eventually the bloom comes off the rose, and I am just sitting there on a cushion thinking the person who keeps time and rings the bell has fallen asleep. There is no inspiration, nothing interesting..only restlessness, and wanting the moment to be and feel other than it is. Maybe that is the beginning of actual practice? ....after the infatuation, but it is also the time when I would rather do anything but sit there and get nothing. Sangha, structure, shoulder to shoulder discipline, keeps me on the cushion past the point when every inclination of habit is to get up and follow the need for distraction, or entertainment, or comfort, or inspiration.. or.. anything but sitting on that cushion and getting nothing.
    Gassho, kojip.
    大山

  7. #7
    So true, Kojip. When the ego starts protesting "I'm bored, I want more, I want to be pleasured and entertained, I want a quick fix, I want ... I want ... I ... I ... I ... " that is when actual Practice begins. Unfortunately, that is also the exact moment so many newcomers to Zen head right for the door ... seeking the next shiny thing that promises a quick dose of pleasure and spiritual entertainment!

    I am sometimes asked "if each moment is all time and space, what is the purpose of an intensive Sesshin?" Well, I often say that, sometimes, we need to practice a bit long and hard, morning to night ... sitting and wrestling with 'me, my self and I' ... all to achieve nothing to attain! Going to Retreats, Sesshin and such is a powerful facet of this Practice and not to be missed.

    Taigu and I strongly encourage folks ... if you can find the time ... to go for retreats for a weekend, but better a few days or full Sesshin (even a full week or two if you can) at "under a roof" wood and brick places, and "traditional" (i.e., very Japanese style) retreats and Sesshin are good experiences. There are several good places to experience that in North America and Europe. But if you cannot access one of those, we have our online Retreat here coming as close as we can to the experience.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-05-2012 at 01:47 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  8. #8
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    I'll be there, of course. I think I'll do it same as last year: as soon as sun rises on this side of the planet. Which means it will be the recorded version with a few hours of difference.

    Thank you, Jundo.

    Oh and I bet you are a wonderful Santa Claus

    Gassho,

    Kyonin
    Please remember I am only a priest in training. I could be wrong in everything I say. Slap me if needed.

    The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. Mr. Spock

  9. #9
    Let me expand a bit on what I said above ...

    Unfortunately, that is also the exact moment so many newcomers to Zen head right for the door ... seeking the next shiny thing that promises a quick dose of pleasure and spiritual entertainment!

    Buddhism is the Middle Way ... not an ascetic practice of intentional physical abuse and extreme denial, not a practice of extreme pleasure and hedonism. However, life sometimes is hard, not as we wish it to be.

    So, one of the greatest revelations in my life came during the 3rd or 4th day of a 10 day Sesshin at a strict Japanese monastery. Basically, I hate Sesshin ... they take me away from my family, my life, my favorite tv shows! I hate to get up in the morning at 4am in the winter, I hate to wash floors, I hate that my legs hurt sometimes! I hate the boredom of the silence, without even a book or other things to read.

    But it was on the 3rd or 4th day of a Sesshin that I found an inner switch, a button to push in my own mind, where I could instantly turn "I hate sitting and the food, this is yuck!" into "this is very peaceful, this is alright, this is fine here." (The reason I describe it as a switch is that, when found, one can even play with it ... jumping back and forth between "yuck" and "alright" as if at a flip.). Now, I flip that switch many many times in life ... in all the unpleasant situations of life, great and small (most recently, just yesterday, during one of my least favorite and rather painful parts of my annual "where the sun don't shine" health check! ) The "I ... I ... I" gets very small, sometimes drops away. (One might say that the sun shines even when the sun don't shine! )

    Now, our 2-day retreat is short but, sometime in that 2 days ... in a quiet, still room without entertainment ... folks are going to hit the "boring" or "I want to be elsewhere" or "my leg hurts" or "I don't like this" moment ...

    ... and I hope they find the switch. That is one reason, among many, for retreat.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-05-2012 at 02:40 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Let me expand a bit on what I said above ...

    Unfortunately, that is also the exact moment so many newcomers to Zen head right for the door ... seeking the next shiny thing that promises a quick dose of pleasure and spiritual entertainment!

    Buddhism is the Middle Way ... not an ascetic practice of intentional physical abuse and extreme denial, not a practice of extreme pleasure and hedonism. However, life sometimes is hard, not as we wish it to be.

    So, one of the greatest revelations in my life came during the 3rd or 4th day of a 10 day Sesshin at Japanese monastery. Basically, I hate Sesshin ... they take me away from my family, my life, my favorite tv shows! I hate to get up in the morning at 4am in the winter, I hate to wash floors, I hate that my legs hurt sometimes! I hate the boredom of the silence, without even a book or other things to read.

    But it was on the 3rd or 4th day of a Sesshin that I found an inner switch, a button to push in my own mind, where I could instantly turn "I hate sitting and the food, this is yuck!" into "this is very peaceful, this is alright, this is fine here." (The reason I describe it as a switch is that, when found, one can even play with it ... jumping back and forth between "yuck" and "alright" as if at a flip.). Now, I flip that switch many many times in life ... in all the unpleasant situations of life, great and small (most recently, just yesterday, during one of my least favorite and rather painful parts of my annual "where the sun don't shine" health check! ) The "I ... I ... I" gets very small, sometimes drops away.

    Now, our 2-day retreat is short but, sometime in that 2 days ... in a quiet, still room without entertainment ... folks are going to hit the "boring" or "I want to be elsewhere" or "my leg hurts" or "I don't like this" moment ...

    ... and I hope they find the switch.

    Gassho, J
    Thank you Jundo ... I hope the switch presents itself.

    Gassho
    Michael
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  11. #11
    Hello all,

    count me in....might take some time to find some proper reindeer though to accompany me. Looking forward to sitting with you all!

    Gassho ho ho,


    Hans Chudo Mongen
    Chudo Mongen, Ordained Novice Priest-in-Training

  12. #12
    Friend of Treeleaf Myozan Kodo's Avatar
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    Hi,
    I'd love to book myself into a hotel with my robes, oryoki set, computer and WiFi access for the two days and sit live throughout the night. However, that will not be possible ... so I'll be sitting this retreat in four sections spanning two weekends. I will be unable to sit live. I wish it were otherwise.

    Thank you for this retreat, Jundo and Taigu.
    Deep bows,
    Myozan
    Myozan Kodo
    Ordained Soto Zen Priest in Training
    Dublin, Ireland

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.
    "Here the way unfolds."

  13. #13
    Senior Member Jakudo's Avatar
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    Count me in Santa...er Jundo. Thank you for this opportunity.
    Gassho, Shawn Jakudo Hinton
    It all begins when we say, I. Everything that follows is illusion.
    "Even to speak the word Buddha is dragging in the mud soaking wet; Even to say the word Zen is a total embarrassment."
    寂道

  14. #14
    Senior Member Nindo's Avatar
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    I have (musical) Santa duties on the 8th and 9th, so was looking forward to the earlier dates, too.
    Will try to start with you live on the 8th (7th here) and continue the following weekend. My ango started a week late, anyway.
    --- In every moment of our sitting all beings are receiving the ultimate help; they are all achieving perfect peace and perfect rest. --- Norman Fischer

  15. #15
    I will sit this retreat, but it might not be that weekend. Final papers are due for my students on the 7th and grades shortly thereafter, so I imagine it will have to be the following weekend for me.

    Gassho,
    a

  16. #16
    Senior Member Koshin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myozan Kodo View Post
    Hi,
    I'd love to book myself into a hotel with my robes, oryoki set, computer and WiFi access for the two days and sit live throughout the night.

    Myozan
    Me too I will try to sit live as far as I can, looking forward to it. Thank you Sagha

    Gassho
    ______________________________
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    P.S. Yup, I know, my English sucks

  17. #17
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    On Saturday the 8th I will be sitting locally at Great River, and will then join you on Sunday the 9th..... looking forward to it....

    Gassho
    Yugen
    Treeleaf Sangha Shuso Ango Head October 2014
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    Please take all my comments with a grain of salt - I am a novice priest and anything I say is to be taken with a good dose of skepticism - Shodo Yugen

  18. #18
    Friend of Treeleaf Daido's Avatar
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    Will probably have to sit the recorded version but looking forward to it and grateful for the opportunity to practice

    Gassho

    Daido
    Jiken Daido - Unsui at Treeleaf's Brother Sangha, the Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage.

    Do not just accept what I say. Decide for yourself if it rings true for you

  19. #19
    Hiyas
    Im going to do this one live, perhaps at the office as I can lock my self in for that time and the internet is a bit beefier than my home connection!

    Gassho
    Shohei

  20. #20
    Senior Member KellyRok's Avatar
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    Hi all,

    I am most likely going to sit the recorded version on Monday, Tuesday, Dec. 10 -11 th. I may have company that weekend. But I will be there regardless of date or time.

    Looking forward to this.

    Gassho,
    Kelly/Jinmei

  21. #21
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Dharma-Santa paid a visit this time last year...
    Re-watching the old video: Jundo, your enthusiasm always gives me a smile.
    迎 Geika

  22. #22
    Senior Member Seizan's Avatar
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    With the date change I now have a chance of participating during the live netcast! Might still have to do the recording, but at least now there is a chance.

    Gassho,
    Dani

  23. #23
    Friends of Treeleaf Dokan's Avatar
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    Looking forward to sitting both live and recorded as life permits but mostly during the two weekends around the retreat.

    Gassho

    Dokan

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    We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.
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  24. #24
    Am looking forward to it.
    Neika / Ian Adams

    寧 Nei - Peaceful/Courteous
    火 Ka - Fire

    Look for Buddha outside your own mind, and Buddha becomes the devil. --Dogen

  25. #25
    Senior Member Nenka's Avatar
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    I'll be there with the recording and my makeshift oriyoki set.

    Gassho

    Jen
    The result is not the point; it is the effort to improve ourselves that is valuable. There is no end to this practice. --Shunryu Suzuki

  26. #26
    Treeleaf Engineer Seimyo's Avatar
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    Hope to sit at least part of this live.

    Gassho.
    Chris

  27. #27
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Nenka, though there are oriyoki sets that fit the definition of the word, aren't they all "makeshift"?
    迎 Geika

  28. #28
    Senior Member Nenka's Avatar
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    Nenka, though there are oriyoki sets that fit the definition of the word, aren't they all "makeshift"?
    Ha! Yeah. But every time I think about getting a "real" set, I realize that I'd miss my Pyrex bowl, grapefruit bowl (that looks like an actual grapefruit), condiment jar "tea cup", and pillow case. Robert Aitken once said something about using a bowl and wooden spoon as a "bell" when he first started out, and that always resonated with me: using what you have with sincerity. I just look forward to using this set with the annual retreat.

    Gassho

    Jen
    The result is not the point; it is the effort to improve ourselves that is valuable. There is no end to this practice. --Shunryu Suzuki

  29. #29
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nenka View Post
    ...Robert Aitken once said something about using a bowl and wooden spoon as a "bell" when he first started out, and that always resonated with me: using what you have with sincerity...
    迎 Geika

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Nenka View Post
    ... using what you have with sincerity ...
    Thank you Nenka, I feel this is so important.

    Gassho
    Michael
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  31. #31
    Treeleaf Unsui Dosho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecoist View Post
    Thank you Nenka, I feel this is so important.
    Ditto on that.

    Gassho,
    Dosho
    Shudo Dosho - Ordained Priest-in-Training
    With your help and guidance from Jundo & Taigu
    I am learning, but please take what I say with a
    grain of salt, especially in matters of the Dharma.

  32. #32
    Won't be able to be there completely live, but will give my best with the recording.

    Gassho,

    Timo
    no thing needs to be added

  33. #33
    Will dedicate this retreat to all suffering beings.

  34. #34
    Senior Member Shujin's Avatar
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    I haven't exactly figured out when I'll sit the retreat. 12-13 Dec is a likely candidate, if that works for my family. Looking forward to it.

    Gassho,
    Shujin

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