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Thread: Sharing video about 1st temple Eiheiji

  1. #1

    Sharing video about 1st temple Eiheiji

    Hi

    I try to share video about our 1st temple Eiheiji(and Buddhism at Western countries )



    May be I did not share this.

    Gassho
    Sat today
    Lah
    Kakunen


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Thank you Kakunen. I just saw this yesterday (NHK, the Japanese BBC, seems to make an Eiheiji documentary like this every few years, always almost the same because ... well, Eiheiji does not change very much),

    Even though it is mostly in Japanese, it is visually very beautiful, and if anyone has a question about any content, I will do my best to answer (and I believe Kakunen spent some time there.)

    Gassho, J

    STLah

    PS - Be sure to see:

    The wake up bell about 4:00,

    The face washing about 5:00,

    Morning Zazen from about 6:30,

    Samu work practice from about 8:30,

    More Zazen from 9:30,

    The way of sleeping at about 10:00,

    The entrance to Master Dogen's tomb about 13:00,

    The Shuso Hossenshiki (Dharma Combat Ceremony) from 14:30 ... Our version at Treeleaf, with an explanation of content, is here: https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/show...quiry-Ceremony),

    The "Tenzo" cooking in the kitchen and serving of Oryoki meal from about 31:00,

    Scenes of the Rohatsu (Buddha's Enlightenment Week) Sesshin from about 40:00 (the small food they eat at about 43:00 represents the Buddha's breaking his fast when he had earlier tried, and rejected, severe fasting).

    At 43:30, the monks leave for some "Takuhatsu" ritual mendicancy.

    At 45:00, is the "Tendoku" reading of the DaiHannya which is like the Tibetan practice of spinning a "prayer wheel" wherein each flip of the book and saying of the volume name equals in Karmic merit a reading of the whole Sutra.
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-25-2020 at 04:23 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  3. #3


    I'm dreaming a trip to Japan and would love to visit Eiheiji - apparently it is possible to stay overnight and take part in zazen even as a tourist.
    Dropping time distance for an hour, "pretending" to be sitting with Dogen, and just smelling cedar trees.
    Knowing the nature of dreams and reality I would probably end up siting with jetlag, mosquito bites and racing throughs - but still, wouldn't it be wonderful?

    Gassho
    Sat

  4. #4
    I enjoyed this little film about Eihejii - particularly the superimposed graphics of the layout. Very beautiful in the snow but must have been very cold!



    Gassho

    Sat today

  5. #5
    Loved this film and the companion film posted by Jinyo, perfect!
    I have a couple of questions.
    How authentic was the going to bed scene, do all the monks really go to bed in unison and all sleep on their right side ( like reposing Buddha?)
    A couple of scenes showed a group of Westerners - how does that work, are they there for a specific time, are there private retreats?
    Who was the American monk?
    At the beginning of the Dharma Combat ceremony, it seemed that members of the public were there watching - is the ceremony part of another ceremony, like ordination?
    Finally, and this is an odd one, Jundo did you catch the location of the Italian monastery? I understood what the monk was saying, but I don't know who he was and I couldn't make out a location, I thought I heard Milan, but also thought I heard Firenze ( Florence), From its appearance I imagine it was Northern Italy.

    Thank you Kakunen for showing us this film, so beautiful visually, although I know that it's not an easy life.
    Deep Bows
    Meitou
    sattoday lah
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  6. #6
    Member RobD's Avatar
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    Apr 2020
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    I watched this today as well. Thank you so much for sharing!

    The Dharma combat ceremony was particularly amusing as I was watching it with English-language auto-translated captions.

    Gassho,
    Rob

    -stlah-


    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    Hi Meitou,

    Quote Originally Posted by Meitou View Post
    Loved this film and the companion film posted by Jinyo, perfect!
    I have a couple of questions.
    How authentic was the going to bed scene, do all the monks really go to bed in unison and all sleep on their right side ( like reposing Buddha?)
    Yes, during their training period. Here is more about it:

    https://books.google.co.jp/books?id=...ddhism&f=false

    A couple of scenes showed a group of Westerners - how does that work, are they there for a specific time, are there private retreats?
    I believe that those scenes were filmed at branch temples of Eiheiji outside Japan, in the US. I know a few foreigners who have attempted Eiheiji, but the language barriers coupled with the arcane and detailed rituals, military "boot camp" atmosphere to rival the U.S. marines, and very hard physical demands has been too much for most. In fact, I do not personally know any foreigners who trained there for more than a short period (Nishijima had one fellow who attempted it, and made it a few months before it impacted his health). Most foreigners train elsewhere.

    Did I miss a foreigner in the video? Show me the part.

    Who was the American monk?
    The older priest shown? That was Les Kaye, a respected teacher in the Suzuki Lineage who teaches in San Jose, California.

    https://terebess.hu/zen/mesterek/LesKaye.html

    At the beginning of the Dharma Combat ceremony, it seemed that members of the public were there watching - is the ceremony part of another ceremony, like ordination?
    The Dharma Combat ceremony is usually held during Ango. The Hossenshiki and becoming "Shuso" is part of the right of passage for the young monk who will inherit his family temple (where his father is usually the priest) upon graduation, so the parishioners of the temple and family members are bussed in to witness if it is a public ceremony.

    Finally, and this is an odd one, Jundo did you catch the location of the Italian monastery? I understood what the monk was saying, but I don't know who he was and I couldn't make out a location, I thought I heard Milan, but also thought I heard Firenze ( Florence), From its appearance I imagine it was Northern Italy.
    That is Fausto Taiten Guareschi of the Deshimaru lineage. I believe it is here, near Parma. http://www.fudenji.it/

    Right now, Kakunin is in Sesshin I believe, but he will write when free.

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-25-2020 at 10:49 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by RobD View Post
    I watched this today as well. Thank you so much for sharing!

    The Dharma combat ceremony was particularly amusing as I was watching it with English-language auto-translated captions.

    Gassho,
    Rob

    -stlah-


    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
    It is written in ancient Japanese, like middle English to modern English, and is largely pre-scripted these days, memorized not spontaneous. Even the young monks don't understand much of it without translation.

    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-25-2020 at 10:47 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  9. #9
    Beautiful!
    Thank you for sharing the video with us, I would love to visit the temple one day, especially if full of snow.

    Gassho,
    Mags
    ST

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Hi Meitou,



    Yes, during their training period. Here is more about it:

    https://books.google.co.jp/books?id=...ddhism&f=false



    I believe that those scenes were filmed at branch temples of Eiheiji outside Japan, in the US. I know a few foreigners who have attempted Eiheiji, but the language barriers couple with arcane and detailed rituals, military "boot camp" atmosphere to rival the U.S. marines, and very hard physical demands has been too much for most. In fact, I do not personally know any foreigners who trained there for more than a short period (Nishijima had one fellow who attempted it, and made it a few months before it impacted his health). Most foreigners train elsewhere.

    Did I miss a foreigner in the video? Show me the part.



    The older priest shown? That was Les Kaye, a respected teacher in the Suzuki Lineage who teaches in San Jose, California.

    https://terebess.hu/zen/mesterek/LesKaye.html



    The Dharma Combat ceremony is usually held during Ango. The Hossenshiki and becoming "Shuso" is part of the right of passage for the young monk who will inherit his family temple (where his father is usually the priest) upon graduation, so the parishioners of the temple and family members are bussed in to witness if it is a public ceremony.



    That is Fausto Taiten Guareschi of the Deshimaru lineage. I believe it is here, near Parma. http://www.fudenji.it/

    Right now, Kakunin is in Sesshin I believe, but he will write when free.

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Thanks so much Jundo. I have that book you linked to - I really enjoyed it but wow shockingly difficult, I'm full of admiration for those guys, there were some terrible stories in that book, almost inhumane. Do you think it's harder for Westerners and why would that be, because there's less at stake for them - the guys who are inheriting dad's temple have to do this if I understand right? There were a lot of westerners at around 23.00, the part with Steve Jobs, but watching it again I'm sure you're right, they are in the US.
    Yes Fudenji makes sense, that's how I heard something like Firenze.
    I loved how every single thing is orchestrated, I can really understand that learning these rituals liberates the mind, because it doesn't have to concern itself with mundane stuff like where's my toothbrush etc!
    Thanks again!
    Gassho
    Meitou
    sattoday lah.
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Meitou View Post
    Thanks so much Jundo. I have that book you linked to - I really enjoyed it but wow shockingly difficult, I'm full of admiration for those guys, there were some terrible stories in that book, almost inhumane. Do you think it's harder for Westerners and why would that be, because there's less at stake for them - the guys who are inheriting dad's temple have to do this if I understand right? There were a lot of westerners at around 23.00, the part with Steve Jobs, but watching it again I'm sure you're right, they are in the US.
    Yes Fudenji makes sense, that's how I heard something like Firenze.
    I loved how every single thing is orchestrated, I can really understand that learning these rituals liberates the mind, because it doesn't have to concern itself with mundane stuff like where's my toothbrush etc!
    Thanks again!
    Gassho
    Meitou
    sattoday lah.
    Yes, the westerners at 23:30 are overseas at various Zen centers.

    Well, when one is 20 years old and needs to inherit dad's temple (one's family home) to keep it, and dad has already trained one enough since childhood that one has already some solid familiarity with the rituals and customs at Eiheiji (so one is not coming in totally unprepared), plus is able to follow the language well enough (plus the ancient Japanese language forms) to pick up on all the arcane daily rituals and rigor, not to mention the psychological pressure of being basically isolated for months on end, the "break em'" military book camp rigor (NOT shown in that film, by the way ... they left out all the yelling and berating, not to mention sometime physical corporal punishment, yes, slapping and such), the freezing cold ...

    ... plus the fact that most Japanese, even today, have a much greater personality trait generally to suffer, shut up and go along with the group ...

    I think that even poor Kakunen, who only trained there some weeks I think, struggled greatly with his 40+ year old body! And Kakunen is not training to inherit a temple, simply for the love of this way.

    (Please hit me with a stick for running long)

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-26-2020 at 12:10 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  12. #12
    PS - Let me add that, surprisingly, many foreigners might not find the "Zen" which they are looking for in such training temples, and might be sorely disappointed. By this I mean that there is a large emphasis on learning ceremonies in order to take over a local parish temple, and also just simply to embody one's professional identity as a Japanese Soto priest, rather than any real emphasis on learning Zen teachings or "enlightenment." The training is meant to build an army of loyal marines to man (all men there, there are separate women's monasteries now) the temples. Yes, the training itself ... pouring oneself heart and body into the physical routine, the long Zazen ... does cause one to drop ego and has definite spiritual effects ...

    ... However, if one is looking for a really "spiritual," Zazen centered practice as the core of Soto Zen these days, one may do much better outside Eiheiji at training places more focused on those other aspects, and even here in the west. Maybe even at Treeleaf in many ways. It is true. So, this may cause many foreigners to leave after a time. I have found western lay folks who are long time practitioners who are more serious about Zen training in important ways, and more informed and educated about Soto Zen teachings, than even many a fully credentialed Soto Zen priest in Japan. It is true.

    According to some surveys, only about 20% of graduates of Eiheiji and such places maintain their Zazen practice after "graduating" and returning to their local parish temple. It is unfortunately true.

    Ian Reader has argued in his classic works (1985 and 1986) that while asserting that zazen is at the core and is the essence of the teachings of Dogen (1200-1253), Sotoshu does not promote zazen to its congregation and very few of its priests actually practice it. According to Reader, the belief that zazen was a hindrance for the popularization of the sect has made patriarchs and the institution alike opt throughout the sect’s history for a functional relationship with the congregation rather than emphasis on monastic Zen practices. After Dogen's death, his successors realized that in order to expand, the sect would have to incorporate more popular customs and practices, such as funeral services and memorial rituals (Reader 1986,p. 17).
    https://nirc.nanzan-u.ac.jp/nfile/2828
    (Sorry, more long rant)
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-26-2020 at 07:58 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  13. #13
    Fascinating video, thank you for sharing. The Treeleaf Shuso Hossenshiki was very moving. Thank you for linking to it, Jundo.
    Gassho,
    Krista
    st/lah

  14. #14
    Thank you Jundo for such a detailed response.
    Gassho
    Meitou
    Sattoday lah
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  15. #15
    Beautiful! ありがとうございます

    Even without my physical limitations, I think I would have struggled to practice at Eiheiji and preferred a smaller temple like Antaiji or Tokei-in.

    It is wonderful to see all those traditions and practices still ongoing, though.

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    -sattoday-
    ------------------------------------
    Feel free to message me if you wish to talk about issues around practicing with physical limitations. This is something I have been sitting with for a fair while and am happy to help with suggestions or just offer a listening ear.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    8 have found western lay folks who are long time practitioners who are more serious about Zen training in important ways, and more informed and educated about Soto Zen teachings, than even many a fully credentialed Soto Zen priest in Japan. It is true.

    According to some surveys, only about 20% of graduates of Eiheiji and such places maintain their Zazen practice after "graduating" and returning to their local parish temple. It is unfortunately true.
    Isnít this part of the Sawaki legacy and the re-emphasis on Zazen a reaction to this?


    Tairin
    Sat today and lah
    泰林 - Tai Rin - Peaceful Woods

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    (Sorry, more long rant)
    I had suspicions like this as I learn more and more about Zen and Buddhism in general in Japan, but I didn't know the percentage of zazen-sitting by priests was so low.

    Most Japanese instructions seem to only suggest sitting in full or half lotus: I had trouble translating "Burmese posture" into Japanese a few weeks ago.

    I wonder if zazen would be more common if they had more acceptance for all ways of sitting, including in a chair... or maybe the barrier is something else.

    Gassho,
    Kenny
    Sat Today

    Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Tairin View Post
    Isn’t this part of the Sawaki legacy and the re-emphasis on Zazen a reaction to this?


    Tairin
    Sat today and lah
    Oh, yes, for sure.

    And then again, Sawaki Roshi may have gone in the other direction, and his Sesshin were far from easy. Likewise for modern Antaiji (Kyonin will tell you of his time there), or Okumura's "Sanshin" group in the USA. From an essay by Okumura Roshi,

    "Sawaki Roshi's emphasis was on zazen. He and his students held monthly sesshin, during which they sat 50-minute zazen periods from 2 am to midnight, with three meal breaks. From midnight to 2 am, no one carried the kyosaku and practitioners could sleep for those two hours sitting there on their cushions."

    "Uchiyama Roshi also decided that human beings need a certain amount of sleep in order to maintain mental health, so his sesshin schedule allowed for 7 hours of rest rather than two hours' dozing on the cushion. Under this schedule, he said, there was no excuse for sleeping during zazen. He did not change the 50-minute zazen and 10-minute kinhin periods, and these still make up the pattern of practice at Sanshin. ... [At Sanshin,] The day consists solely of fourteen 50-minute periods of zazen, with three one-hour meal periods and about six hours of sleep." http://www.sanshinji.org/frequently-...p-Gs3gRkuQ7DJ0
    Nishijima Roshi and I are more "middle way" on this. Truly, sometimes we sit long and sometimes we sit short ... both long and short have their aspects, difficulties and rewards ... so sometimes we sit long and sometimes we sit short ... but ALWAYS sit while dropping all measure of time, beyond mental ideas of "long vs. short."

    (Sorry, my comments ran long ... beyond "long and short")

    Gassho, J

    STlah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  19. #19
    Jundo, strange question for you: do they still bathe only once every five days at Eiheiji? I only ask because when I read "Eat. Sleep. Sit." It seemed almost like the calendar faded away and the five day interval between baths became a ritual form of timekeeping for the monks.

    Gassho,
    Juki

    sat today and lah
    Last edited by Juki; 09-27-2020 at 03:41 PM.
    "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Kenny View Post
    I had suspicions like this as I learn more and more about Zen and Buddhism in general in Japan, but I didn't know the percentage of zazen-sitting by priests was so low.

    Most Japanese instructions seem to only suggest sitting in full or half lotus: I had trouble translating "Burmese posture" into Japanese a few weeks ago.

    I wonder if zazen would be more common if they had more acceptance for all ways of sitting, including in a chair... or maybe the barrier is something else.

    Gassho,
    Kenny
    Sat Today

    Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk
    Kenny if you haven't already read it, I do recommend the book Eat, Sleep, Pray that Jundo linked to above. It really gives you a taste of the discipline required at Eiheiji, where there are no discussions, no disagreements, you do what you're told or you leave; provided of course that you even get through the door after being literally kicked down the steps a few times on arrival
    It's a fascinating read.
    Gassho
    Meitou
    Sattoday lah
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  21. #21
    Member RobD's Avatar
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    Massachusetts, United States
    Quote Originally Posted by Meitou View Post
    Kenny if you haven't already read it, I do recommend the book Eat, Sleep, Pray that Jundo linked to above. It really gives you a taste of the discipline required at Eiheiji, where there are no discussions, no disagreements, you do what you're told or you leave; provided of course that you even get through the door after being literally kicked down the steps a few times on arrival
    It's a fascinating read.
    Gassho
    Meitou
    Sattoday lah
    I'll second Meitou's suggestion. I read it years ago and may give it another go soon enough.

    Gassho,
    Rob

    -stlah-


    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by RobD View Post
    I'll second Meitou's suggestion. I read it years ago and may give it another go soon enough.

    Gassho,
    Rob

    -stlah-


    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
    Yes, this thread prompted me to re-read it, I've just started.
    Gassho
    Meitou
    sattoday lah
    命 Mei - life
    島 Tou - island

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Juki View Post
    Jundo, strange question for you: do they still bathe only once every five days at Eiheiji? I only ask because when I read "Eat. Sleep. Sit." It seemed almost like the calendar faded away and the five day interval between baths became a ritual form of timekeeping for the monks.

    Gassho,
    Juki

    sat today and lah
    Yes, traditionally on days with 4 and 9 in the date (although it may be different in summer when there has been hard physical labor. A good question for Kakunen when he is back, although he was only there for a few weeks).

    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by Meitou View Post
    Kenny if you haven't already read it, I do recommend the book Eat, Sleep, Sit that Jundo linked to above.
    Thank you kindly for the recommendation! I have read a few other accounts of training at monasteries, this account from Muho Noelke is a real eye-opener:

    https://sendaba.hatenablog.com/entry/2020/02/14/000000

    This makes me want to ask a question that I honestly just try to forget, maybe it's stupid:

    How do we justify violence and abuse at Zen monasteries?

    (Sorry for going over, but the question should probably be explained: )
    The strict schedule is understandable, I don't think the sleep deprivation is a good idea but that I can almost understand it. However, physical violence doesn't really seem to square with Buddhism at all. Koans are of course full of people hitting each other, but they're just stories. No one actually cut a cat in half, and no one cut their arm off. If I decide to scream at and beat someone until they bleed at home, not only does it seem to qualify as a harmful action to be avoided, but I'm going to get a visit from the police. Why do we let monks off the hook and call it "skillful means"?

    Gassho,
    Kenny
    Sat Today

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Kenny View Post
    The strict schedule is understandable, I don't think the sleep deprivation is a good idea but that I can almost understand it. However, physical violence doesn't really seem to square with Buddhism at all. Koans are of course full of people hitting each other, but they're just stories. No one actually cut a cat in half, and no one cut their arm off. If I decide to scream at and beat someone until they bleed at home, not only does it seem to qualify as a harmful action to be avoided, but I'm going to get a visit from the police. Why do we let monks off the hook and call it "skillful means"?
    There is a feeling in traditional, macho, samurai Japanese culture in general (not only in Zen monasteries, but in high school baseball clubs, martial arts groups, and some business companies with new workers, many places, the following is an example: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/opinion...hazing-system/) that one must beat and berate the ego out of someone so that they become part of the group and absorb its values, very much like marine boot camp in the American military or even, on a lesser scale, college fraternity "hazing" of new pledges. As the foregoing link describes, it teaches "gaman" (toughing things out), fighting spirit, hierarchal relationships, obedience to authority, group cooperation and, especially, respect for tradition. It is an aspect of Japanese culture which has both its gentle and refined side, but also its "sacrifice to the group" mentality, its valuing of inner persistence and overcoming pain, it "up/down" social structure where seniors by age or rank boss and sometimes bully juniors even in elementary schools (although the Japanese are softening up --a bit-- on this in recent generations).

    This is magnified in some approaches to Japanese Zen (primarily the very samurai and macho Rinzai style, but to some degree even in the Soto training monasteries, also very common in Korean Rinzai Zen which shares similar cultural values) where the belief is that one must "break" the ego to attain non-self, freedom from ego, Kensho etc. No pain, no gain. Couple this with the familiar psychological principal shown in those controversial experiments where many test subjects told to inflict pain on others did as they were told (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment), that some personality types are actually drawn to the macho violence either because they feel the psychological need to beat or be beaten ... and one has the U.S. marines and many a Japanese Zen monastery, even Sumo training stables ...

    https://www.herald.ie/sport/other-sp...-27913894.html

    The violence is explained away doctrinally by saying that it is really a kind of "tough love," a "compassionate" attempt to help the student attain realization. The "grandmotherly" or "parental" heart that was mentioned in another thread this week (https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/show...mother-s-Heart) means that grandma sometimes carries a big stick. Buddhism has its gentle and peaceful side, but Buddhism has its tough side too.

    Obviously, in the west and in modern times, some places in Japan too such as Nishijima Roshi's attitude, the gentle and peaceful side is more valued.

    (I apologize for the verbal violence of running long)

    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah

    PS - Yes, I am very sure that Huike's cutting off his arm to show his determination (there is good historical evidence that the story originated with a limb lost to robbers) and the "cutting the cat in two" Koan (I speak about it here, and why it is unlikely that the animal was actually harmed: https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/show...l=1#post270552) are not historical.

    PPS - Personal story: When I got married nearly 30 years ago here in Japan, my wife and I tried to make a "fun" wedding, rather than the rather serious, dull, formal things that the Japanese tend to favor. My father-in-law first opposed the idea, explaining that the group experience of "gaman/biting the bullet together" builds group spirit, that if Japanese don't suffer together, they won't take it seriously! (In the end, he had a great time ... dancing the Hokey-Pokey of course! ).
    Last edited by Jundo; 09-29-2020 at 12:11 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  26. #26
    When seeing videos like this, I'm struck by the strange quaintness of the medieval lifestyle that is continuing in these small pockets of humanity. This is sort of similar with many Christian monasteries, though most of them that I've seen when living in France, do work to support the monastery, such as baking, to sell goods in a shop along with post cards and tchotchkes.

    I don't think we should aspire to such a lifestyle, because it is based on the medieval context. I'm sure there are some zen practitioners who want to experience this, because it's "authentic" but it seems to me to be an exaggeration. "Boot camp," as Jundo said, is the term that seems appropriate. And this shows that it really doesn't work:

    According to some surveys, only about 20% of graduates of Eiheiji and such places maintain their Zazen practice after "graduating" and returning to their local parish temple. It is unfortunately true.
    Gassho,

    Kirk

    sat
    -----
    I know nothing.

  27. #27
    For the Christian version, a wonderful documentary apparently made available online by the monastery which is the subject ...



    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  28. #28
    I think many westerners find it hard to digest that they donít find the Zen they expect at places like Eheiji.. The lack of understanding of Japanese mentality and attitude definitely takes a toll on the majority. It also serves well to point out, as Jundo kindly did, that first of all itís a place of HARD training, not ďregularĒ lifestyle and secondly, that in Japan, many young guys inherit family temples, and they need to be trained to run and maintain them. I actually have a friend who is in that position, and his attitude towards zazen sitting and other temple activities is different than what many westerners might expect. That said, his life revolves around the temple and his duties there, so itís not a small thing.

    Sorry for the length of this!

    SatToday
    Jake

    -------------------------
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  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by jakeb View Post
    I think many westerners find it hard to digest that they don’t find the Zen they expect at places like Eheiji.. The lack of understanding of Japanese mentality and attitude definitely takes a toll on the majority. It also serves well to point out, as Jundo kindly did, that first of all it’s a place of HARD training, not “regular” lifestyle and secondly, that in Japan, many young guys inherit family temples, and they need to be trained to run and maintain them. I actually have a friend who is in that position, and his attitude towards zazen sitting and other temple activities is different than what many westerners might expect. That said, his life revolves around the temple and his duties there, so it’s not a small thing.

    Sorry for the length of this!

    SatToday
    I just posted an extreme example of the extremes of some Zen monastic training (I am not sure how common such practices are at Eiheiji, but there is surely much sleep deprivation just with the normal schedule) ...

    https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/show...l=1#post273124

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  30. #30
    Hi,

    when I was at Eiheiji,I bathed everyday.
    Because practitioner(Unsui) is not only practitoner but also have role to welcome to tourists.

    But when I was at temple sometimes I bathe 4 and 9 date(Shiku-nichi),this is a traditional way.

    Sorry for bad English.

    Kakunen
    Sat today
    LAH

    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Yes, traditionally on days with 4 and 9 in the date (although it may be different in summer when there has been hard physical labor. A good question for Kakunen when he is back, although he was only there for a few weeks).

    Gassho, Jundo

    STLah

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Kakunen View Post
    Hi,

    when I was at Eiheiji,I bathed everyday.
    Because practitioner(Unsui) is not only practitoner but also have role to welcome to tourists.

    But when I was at temple sometimes I bathe 4 and 9 date(Shiku-nichi),this is a traditional way.

    Sorry for bad English.

    Kakunen
    Sat today
    LAH
    Your English is wonderful. Thank you for the insight into temple life.

    Gassho,
    Juki
    sat today and lah
    "First you have to give up." Tyler Durden

  32. #32

    Sharing video about 1st temple Eiheiji

    Hi

    I try to share daily life at small temple Tenryuji.

    Now I am at here,here is near Eiheiji and sit everyday and have Sesshin every month.



    This video shared by tourist who walk this prifecture(Fukui pref)

    To 9:00 is about daily life at Tenryuji.

    Please enjoy.

    Gassho
    Sat today
    Lah
    Kakunen


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Kakunen View Post
    Hi

    I try to share daily life at small temple Tenryuji.

    Now I am at here,here is near Eiheiji and sit everyday and have Sesshin every month.
    And your cameo appearance about 2:30 (really you this time, not just a fellow who looks like you).

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    I just posted an extreme example of the extremes of some Zen monastic training (I am not sure how common such practices are at Eiheiji, but there is surely much sleep deprivation just with the normal schedule) ...
    I've watched some of this video, and the sleep deprivation, combined with the inflexible schedule, is a pretty standard tool of indoctrination. If you look at it from that point of view, it really looks like a cult. (I know, when you have the context, it's a bit different.)

    Gassho,

    Kirk

    sat
    -----
    I know nothing.

  35. #35
    Slightly off topic, but watching this video, I notice that a large percentage of the young monks wear glasses, much more than I would expect at that age. Any idea why this is the case? Do more Japanese wear glasses? Does zazen do something to the eyes?

    Gassho,

    Kirk

    sat
    -----
    I know nothing.

  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by kirkmc View Post
    Slightly off topic, but watching this video, I notice that a large percentage of the young monks wear glasses, much more than I would expect at that age. Any idea why this is the case? Do more Japanese wear glasses? Does zazen do something to the eyes?

    Gassho,

    Kirk

    sat
    Actually, you hit on an old monks' secret: If you wear one of these pairs of trick eye glasses, you can sleep during zazen!





    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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