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Thread: Ango changed my life

  1. #1
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    Ango changed my life

    Ango and Jukai are here again and excitement is felt all over the sangha.

    I see friends getting ready, asking questions and getting nervous about it all, especially for the ones undertaking Ango for the first time.

    Will I do it right? Will I be able to sew a rakusu in time? Will I have the willpower to commit to what I have just wrote? Will I be able to sit for more minutes? Dana? What's that? (In my case: Will my poor English be good enough to understand everything?)

    Tons of questions and doubts come to mind, but we all are in for the ride, despite we might not be sure what's waiting. We feel we are doing the right thing for our practice, for the community and for the universe.

    So I decided to join my first Ango. I wasn't sure what was in store for me, but it felt right. It was overwhelming because there were a lot of addendums to my life and I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to make it till the end. More sitting, more reading, daily liturgy, donating to charity. In general it meant paying more attention to my practice.

    Plus, I had to give up two things I held as sacred. To me it was bread (wheat based stuff in general like cookies, cakes, crackers, tortillas, pasta etc.) and video games.

    Video games were never an issue, so it was not a problem. I went cold turkey.

    But bread... man, that was hard! I was so hooked on wheat that the first week was hell. How was I going to make it through life without doughnuts?

    But since I had committed to quit, I held onto that. It was like a sacred promise to my teachers, to the sangha and to me.

    The second week was still a little hard, but by the third week I had completely changed my diet. No bread at all. I changed to healthy food.

    By the end of the three months I learned that I didn't need wheat products at all. Not only that, but I had got involved in my nutrition and learned quite a bit about what was good for me.

    And I lost weight. But that's not the point of this post, no.

    The important thing is that all the actions I made during Ango, like more time sitting, healthy eating, metta and meal chanting, paying attention to my thoughts and emotions, making donations a part of my daily life... everything stayed.

    Ango became everyday life.

    So don't be nervous. Take it one day at a time, dropping resistance and judgements. Stand strong to your commitments only for today.

    But most of all, enjoy.

    Gassho,

    Kyonin
    Shuso and Ango leader for September 2014.

    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

  2. #2
    Treeleaf Unsui Dosho's Avatar
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    As Jundo would say Kyonin, lovely...lovely!

    Well, I added the second lovely.

    Deep bows my brother!

    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.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Juki's Avatar
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    Thank you, Kyonin. But no tortillas? That is truly a sacrifice. When Ango is over, perhaps we can get together on G+ for some enchiladas? I know you have the talent to make your own. I will buy some from "El Jalisco" down the street.

    gassho,
    william
    "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyonin View Post
    The important thing is that all the actions I made during Ango, like more time sitting, healthy eating, metta and meal chanting, paying attention to my thoughts and emotions, making donations a part of my daily life... everything stayed.

    Ango became everyday life.

    So don't be nervous. Take it one day at a time, dropping resistance and judgements. Stand strong to your commitments only for today.

    But most of all, enjoy.
    Thank you very much, Kyonin. I hope these good habits may remain in our lives.

    Gassho.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Clark's Avatar
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    Hi Kyonin

    Thank you for sharing your experiences and your enthusiasm. As as natural health practitioner I can tell you many people do seem to have issues with eating wheat and I am sure this helped you greatly. I would like to submit however, that much of your success is also due to your increased sense of mindfulness in EVERYTHING you do. Let's face it many of us are habitual or occasional STRESS eaters. When we come to a more centered place our real self or non-self, perhaps we no longer feel the need to comfort ourselves as much, or burying our emotions in heaps of food.

    Gassho C

  6. #6
    That was a lovely post Kyonin.

    gassho,

    simon.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Myosha's Avatar
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    Gassho,
    Edward
    Practice with humility, respect all beings, avoid attachments, give rise to praja from your own awareness, put an end to delusions - Hui-neng

  8. #8
    Friends of Treeleaf Dokan's Avatar
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    Thank you bro!

    Gassho,

    Dokan

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 4
    We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.
    ~Anas Nin

  9. #9
    Senior Member Genshin's Avatar
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    Thank you Kyonin.

    Gassho
    Matt

  10. #10
    Thank you Kyonin, very well stated.

    Gassho,

    Risho

  11. #11
    As always Kyōnin, wonderful!

    Deep bows
    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.

  12. #12
    Friend of Treeleaf Myozan Kodo's Avatar
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    Fantastic, Kyonin! Inspiring.
    Gassho
    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
    Thank you for this Kyonin, I look forward to practicing Ango with you.

    Gassho

    Zac

  14. #14
    Friend of Treeleaf Taikyo's Avatar
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    Wonderful stuff - encouraging, courageous & so inspiring

    Thank you Kyonin
    Gassho
    David

  15. #15
    Treeleaf Unsui rculver's Avatar
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    Thank You Kyonin.


    Shugen
    As a priest in training, please take everything I say with a pinch of salt

    Meido Shugen
    明道 修眼

  16. #16
    Treeleaf Engineer Seimyo's Avatar
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    Thank you Kyonin.

    Gassho.
    Seimyo

    明 Seimyō (Christhatischris)

  17. #17
    Thank you Kyonin! BIG inspiration YEah!

    Gassho

    kb
    Dancing between stillness and motion I find peace.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Thank you for sharing, Kyonin. Your story is such an inspiration, and motivating to also commit and make some changes in my own life.

    Gassho,
    Treena

  19. #19
    Thank you, Kyonin. Your words are heartfelt and honest. And for those of us entering our first Ango, they are reassuring. I look forward to experiencing the next 90 days with you and the Sangha.
    Gassho,
    Dan

  20. #20
    ...day by day, well said,
    Gassho
    Moyku

  21. #21
    Senior Member Jakudo's Avatar
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    Thank you for this post Kyonin, wonderful stuff.
    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

  22. #22
    Senior Member Shonin's Avatar
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    _/\_ I'm an avid gamer, so I don't understand how anyone quits cold turkey LOL. I thought about that (this is sad when you think about it) as my Ango commitment. Then I reminded myself we're supposed to make vows we feel we can stick with, it's not an endurance contest.

  23. #23
    Great stuff Kyonin.

    Gluten, in general, can be pretty difficult for the body to work with, unless one is just burning tons of calories, and even then.

    Anyway, you've got me thinking of what to give up for Ango...
    Shōmon

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