December 2011 Archives

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Image Happy times, sad times, rainy days and sunny ... earthquake and nuclear disaster, good health and sickness ... the death of someone we love, our new daughter coming home ... getting older ... ups, downs, beginnings and endings ... 

Oh, what a year this has been! 

But in truth, a year like any year. The Buddha knew that such is the stuff of life, all of life filled with many things we long for and many we fear and resist ... 

I usually describe Shikantaza Zazen to newcomers by a "sky-and -clouds" metaphor (one of the 'classic' metaphors in the Zen world) .... with the Light, Clear, Open, Boundless Shining Sun and Sky as Buddha Nature ... and clouds of ignorance, thoughts and emotions that may becloud or obstruct our experiencing such. 

Yet our way of Shikantaza (unlike some flavors of meditation and Zazen) is not about attaining a mind always 100% totally free of clouds, though sometimes that may come too. Rather, sometimes we do and sometimes we don't ... clouds drift in, clouds drift out. Sometimes, the sky is so wide and blue and clear in all directions, without a cloud in the skyThat is good Zazen! Boundless, Cloud Free! 

And sometimes (maybe most times), there are clouds drifting through the sky ... but we do not latch onto them or stir them up ... just let them go and drift away. Shining Blue peaks through the wide open spaces between the clouds. Moreover, the light of the sky can be seen to shine right through-and-through the clouds themselves ... so that clouds and sky are not seen as apart or in any conflict whatsoever. The clouds are now illuminated and transformed from their darkness, the Sun and Blue Shining right through-and-through each and all, and the Sky Whole. It is not "cloud free", but rather, the clouds are encountered as having been Free, Light and Clear All Along! 8) That is good Zazen too ... maybe even more precious than an all clear sky! 

Now, sometimes (in human darkness and ignorance), the sky is so cloudy, fogged and stormy, filled with rampant thoughts and emotions, that the clear blue is completely hidden and bound in! That is not good Zazen ... that is just ignorance, confused and cloudy bad Zazen! And so, we should let the clouds clear and blow away, returning to the spacious, shining blue as described above. 

However, even when the sky and sun are totally hidden ... not a patch of blue to see in the gray and stormy sky ... the sky and sun are still there even though we are blocked from seeing by the covering clouds. In fact, there is no bad Zazen ... even the bad Zazen. 

More here:
"Right" Zazen and "Wrong" Zazen 
viewtopic.php?f=23&t=2783

Now, take those clouds as also representing too the events and times in our own life ... each cloud just happy times or sad times, rainy days and sunny ... earthquake and disaster, good health and sickness ... the death of someone we love, our new daughter coming home ... getting older ... beginnings and endings ... 

... and just let them be too, the changing clouds of life moving along. Know the Light, Clear, Open, Boundless Shining Sun-and-Sky that illuminates each happening ... all the white clouds or black clouds or gray of daily life. Our way is not about always having a life free of problems, any more than there can be a sky always free of clouds! But each is instantly transformed in the Silent Illumination of the Bright Boundless Sky ... and the Sky and Clouds are seen as Whole ... 

... even the darkest moment just Light, Clear, Open, Boundless, Shining when known as such! 

It is a lovely way to live. 


Happy New Year ...

... and a Peaceful Right This Moment to ALL! 



Today's Sit-A-Long video follows at this link. Remember: recording ends soon after the beginning bells; a sitting time of 15 to 35 minutes is recommended


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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!

Today's Sit-A-Long video follows at this link. Remember: recording ends soon after the beginning bells; a sitting time of 15 to 35 minutes is recommended

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTXKHMmzyLo


WELCOME ...

... to our TREELEAF 'AT HOME' Two Day 'ALL ONLINE' ROHATSU (Buddha's Enlightenment Day) RETREAT, being  held by LIVE NETCAST on Sunday/Monday December 4 and 5, 2011

Please 'sit-a-long' with the LIVE NETCAST at the times below ... to be visible at the following link during those hours ...
LIVE RETREAT NETCAST at JUSTIN.TV: CLICK ON THE TAB ON LOWER RIGHT FOR 'FULL SCREEN   

http://www.justin.tv/treeleafzen

HOWEVER, you may still join the Retreat and sit-a-long at ANY AND ALL TIME afterby the real time recorded version below (no different from the original!). 

The full sitting schedule is below, and you may download our CHANT BOOK HERE(PDF):


https://sites.google.com/site/jundotree ... ects=0&d=1

and various RETREAT POINTERS HERE(PDF):


https://sites.google.com/site/jundotree ... ects=0&d=1


Recordings of each segment are posted below in time order ... and if we drop from mind all thought of 'now' 'then' 'here' and 'there' ... we will all be sitting together right when and where you are

This Retreat celebrates the 'official' closure of our ANGO (100 day Special Practice Season) at Treeleaf, is a part of current preparations for our JUKAI (Undertaking the Precepts) Ceremony in January, and marks ROHATSU ... the traditional holiday in Japan celebrating the time of the Buddha's Enlightenment. 

Jundo will be guiding the first day of sitting on Sunday, and Taigu on Monday.

In case of technical problems, please just go along as best you can with the schedule ... we sit with "what is".. .

OF COURSE, EVERYTHING IN MODERATION ... if the sitting ever feels too much, be sure to walk lots and lots of Kinhin (even if during a sitting period). And if the whole retreat becomes too much, or you feel ill, you may slow down ... , spread things out, shorten the sittings ... or STOP! Be sure that you have someone close by whom you can call, or who can check on you from time to time. If there is any question about health, do not take any chances!

Please write and let us know how it goes. Gassho, Jundo & Taigu

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DAY 1 UNIT 1
(Live Netcast: Start = SATURDAY NY 4pm London 9pm / End = SATURDAY NY 6:55pm, London 11:55pm)
(ALL TIMES APPROXIMATE)

DAY 1
06:00-06:50 AM Entrance by Officiant (Jundo) & Zazen. If you usually wear a Rakusu, DO NOT wear it yet (keep it in its bag) until Takkesage (Kesa Verse) later in morning.
06:50-07:00 Kinhin* (All Kinhin times can be bathroom break)
07:00-07:35 Zazen
07:35-07:45 Kinhin


RECORDING OF ABOVE IS HERE:

07:45-08:25 Zazen + Kesa Verse
08:25-08:55 "Long" Service.Please follow along in the Sutra Books that will be provided. Floor prostrations when hear ching-ching-ching-ching- ching roll of bell.
08:55-09:20 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 1 UNIT 2
(Live Netcast: Start=SATURDAY NY 7:20pm London SUNDAY 12:20am /End=SATURDAY NY 7:50pm, SUNDAY London 12:50am)

09:20-09:50 Oryoki Bring you bowls and small table before start.
09:50-10:30 Samu/Rest Period Mindfully wash and repack Oryoki bowls.


RECORDING OF ABOVE IS HERE:
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DAY 1 UNIT 3
(Live Netcast: Start=SATURDAY NY 8:30pm London SUNDAY 1:30am /End=SATURDAY NY 10:45pm, SUNDAY London 3:45am)


10:30-11:10 Zazen
11:10-11:20 Kinhin
11:20-12:00 Zazen &Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE

12:00-12:10 Kinhin
12:10-12:45 Zazen
12:45-13:10 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

                                                              Unit 1-3B


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DAY 1 UNIT 4
(Live Netcast: Start=SATURDAY NY 11:10pm London SUNDAY 4:10am /End=SATURDAY NY 11:40pm, SUNDAY London 4:40am)

13:10-13:40 Oryoki Bring you bowls and small table before start.
13:40-14:30 Samu/Rest Period Mindfully wash and repack Oryoki bowls.


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE

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DAY 1 UNIT 5
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 12:30am London 5:30am /End=SUNDAY NY 1:30am, London 6:30am)


14:30-15:00 Samu Work Practice Indoor if night time, Outdoor if daytime and possible
15:00-16:00 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

                                                             1-5 Samu


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DAY 1 UNIT 6
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 2:00am London 7:00am /End=SUNDAY NY 4:25am, London 9:25am)

16:00-16:40 Zazen
16:40-16:50 Kinhin
16:50-17:40 Zazen & Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:



17:40-17:50 Kinhin
17:50-18:25 Zazen
18:25-19:00 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

                                                                Unit 1-6B


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DAY 1 UNIT 7
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 5:00am London 10:00am /End=SUNDAY NY 5:30am, London 10:30am)

19:00-19:30 Oryoki Bring you bowls and small table before start.
19:30-20:10 Samu/Rest Period Mindfully wash and repack Oryoki bowls.


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 1 UNIT 8
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 6:10am London 11:10am /End=SUNDAY NY 6:40am, London 11:40am)

20:10-20:40 Samu Work Practice Indoor if night time, Outdoor if daytime and possible
20:40-21:00 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 1 UNIT 9
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 7:00am London Noon /End=SUNDAY NY 9:30am, London 2:30pm)

21:00-21:50 "Short" Service & Zazen Please follow along in the Sutra Books that will be provided. Floor prostrations when here ching-ching-ching-ching- ching roll of bell.
21:50-22:00 Kinhin

22:00-22:40 Zazen &Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra
22:40-22:50 Kinhin
22:50-23:30 Metta Chant & Zazen Close with Verse of Atonement & Four Vows


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 1 UNIT 10
( No Live Netcast from SUNDAY NY 9:30am London 2:30pm to NY 4:00pm, London 9:00pm)
PLEASE CATCH UP WITH MISSED OVERNIGHT UNITS!

(Optional: Waza = Tradition of 'All Night Zazen' ... but we recommend you sleep instead. 
See you in the morning)

23:30 PM-
(Day 2)
05:30 AM
BATH & SLEEP


NO RECORDING OF ABOVE


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DAY 2 UNIT 1
(Live Netcast: Start = SUNDAY NY 4pm London 9pm / End = SUNDAY NY 6:55pm, London 11:55pm)
(ALL TIMES APPROXIMATE)

06:00-06:40 AM Zazen Begin sitting without instruction. If you usually wear a Rakusu, DO NOT wear it yet (keep it in its bag) until Takkesage (Kesa Verse) later in morning.
06:40-07:00 Long (20 minute) Kinhin*
07:00-07:35 Zazen
07:35-07:45 Kinhin


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

07:45-08:25 Zazen + Kesa Verse When instructed, place on Kesa and recite Kesa Verse. All others, hands in Gassho.
08:25-08:55 "Long" Service Please follow along in the Sutra Books that will be provided. Floor prostrations when hear ching-ching-ching-ching- ching roll of bell.
08:55-09:20 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 2 UNIT 2
(Live Netcast:Start=SUNDAY NY 7:20pm London SUNDAY 12:20am/End=SUNDAY NY 7:50pm, MONDAY London 12:50am)

09:20-09:50 Oryoki Bring you bowls and small table before start.
09:50-10:30 Samu/Rest Period Mindfully wash and repack Oryoki bowls.


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 2 UNIT 3
(Live Netcast: Start=SUNDAY NY 8:30pm London MONDAY 1:30am/End=SUNDAY NY 10:45pm, MONDAY London 3:45am)


10:30-11:10 Zazen
11:10-11:20 Kinhin
11:20-12:00 Zazen & Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra

 
RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:


12:00-12:10 Kinhin
12:10-12:45 Zazen
12:45-13:10 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 2 UNIT 4
(Live Netcast:Start=SUNDAY NY 11:10pm London MONDAY 4:10am/End=SUNDAY NY 11:40pm, MONDAY London 4:40am)

13:10-13:40 Oryoki Bring you bowls and small table before start.
13:40-14:30 Samu/Rest Period Mindfully wash and repack Oryoki bowls.


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:
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DAY 2 UNIT 5
(Live Netcast: Start=MONDAY NY 12:30am London 5:30am /End=MONDAY NY 1:30am, London 6:30am)

14:30-15:30 Samu Work Practice Indoor if night time, Outdoor if daytime and possible
15:30-16:00 REST PERIOD


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:

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DAY 2 UNIT 6
(Live Netcast: Start=MONDAY NY 2:00am London 7:00am /End=MONDAY NY 4:00 am, London 9:00am)

16:00-16:40 Zazen
16:40-16:50 Kinhin
16:50-17:20 Zazen & Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra
17:20-17:30 Kinhin
17:30-18:00 Zazen
18:00-19:00 REST PERIOD

RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:
TO BE POSTED HERE AFTER LIVE NETCAST

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DAY 2 UNIT 7
(Live Netcast: Start=MONDAY NY 5:00am London 10:00am /End=MONDAY NY 7:30am, London 12:30pm)

19:00-19:50 "Short" Service & Zazen Please follow along in the Sutra Books that will be provided. Floor prostrations when here ching-ching-ching-ching- ching roll of bell.
19:50-20:00 Kinhin
20:00-20:40 Zazen & Dharma Talk Chant Gatha on Opening & Closing Sutra
21:40-21:15 Zazen
RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:


21:15-21:25 Kinhin
21:25-22:05 Fukanzazengi & Zazen
CLOSING WORDS Close with Verse of Atonement & Four Vows


RECORDING OF THE ABOVE IS HERE:



Nine Bows to All Who Sat This Retreat Together ...