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Thread: Sitting Group

  1. #1
    Senior Member Daijo's Avatar
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    Sitting Group

    So we started a little sitting group here in New Jersey, with Jundo's blessings of course. We're attempting 2 sits per week, Sunday Mornings and Thursday evenings, with an introduction for those totally new to sitting on Saturday mornings. This past weekend was our first gathering, and it was really nice. I was joined by three others on Saturday morning and there are 2 signed up for next weekend. Yesterday there were only two of us, but we have 5 scheduled for next Sunday (no group this Thursday).

    If anyone is ever in the Northern NJ area (Sussex County) it would be nice if you could join us. We are meeting at a brand new cafe just a short distance from our home. The name of the place is, The Bodhi Tree and it's a sort of "spiritual" soup of an atmosphere. They do all sorts of events there that fall under the umbrella of "spirituality". I don't know much about that sort of stuff, but they're great folks and have offered up a quiet and spacious room in the back of the cafe for us to sit, walk, ring bells, chant, etc...

    Perhaps if we can sort out the technology in the room, we can all sit together sometime soon.

    Gassho

  2. #2
    Great Chuck !
    Gassho
    Myoku

  3. #3
    Treeleaf Unsui Shokai's Avatar
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    Wonderful Chuck ! As you progress we'll be waiting to hear how it goes.

    gassho,
    gassho, Shokai, still learning the way and knowing nothing
    仁道 生開 - Jindo Shokai "Open to life in a benevolent way"
    Just another itinerant monk; go somewhere else to listen to someone who really knows.

  4. #4
    I actually started getting interested in Zen Buddhism with a group that sounds very similar to this! Good luck and keep us updated

    Gassho,

    James

  5. #5
    Treeleaf Unsui Dosho's Avatar
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    Awesomesauce!

    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
    This is wonderful Chuck.

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

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

  7. #7
    That sounds lovely, Chuck. Good for you!

    Gassho
    Andy

  8. #8
    Senior Member Daijo's Avatar
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    As with many of us on this board, the closest zendo is just too far for folks here to travel to on a weekly basis. And it is nice to sit with others within walls sometimes.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    I still haven't worked up the balls to sit with the White Plum group very near my house! Good job, Chuck.
    迎 Geika

  10. #10
    Treeleaf Engineer Seimyo's Avatar
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    Awesome Chuck. I hope you get lots of sitters.

    Gassho.
    Seimyo

    明 Seimyō (Christhatischris)

  11. #11
    Treeleaf Unsui Yugen's Avatar
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    Well done Chuck. Please keep us updated as to how things progress. Do you share any readings in your group?

    Gassho
    Yugen
    Treeleaf Sangha Shuso Ango Head October 2014
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    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

  12. #12
    Senior Member Daijo's Avatar
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    Yugen, not yet. Baby steps, we'll start with sitting, walking, and more sitting. Since this is difficult for new comers sometimes, I've added a Ch'an practice of moving meditation in the beginning. It's called 8 forms meditation, it's a practice used at the Dharma Drum retreat Center. Just a series of light movements to sort of get the blood flowing and the mind relaxed. I've also left 30 minutes of free time for some open discussion. I find that with many zen groups there's very little discussion. That's fine for me but I think most people who come to Zen are originally "looking for something". More often than not, if their first experience is sitting, sitting, siting and then seeing everyone scurrying away, they never come back. So I think it makes people more comfortable if they can at least chit chat for a little bit. Eventually, we may add some readings, but for now I'm holding off on anything that gives the impression that I might be a "teacher". I'm really trying to stress that point while still offering what little guidance I can.

    Hopefully, as time goes on, we can arrange some field trips. It's only a couple hours drive to Zen Mountain Monastery, Dharma Drum Retreat Center and of course the Buddhist mega store that is New York City. We shall see.

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