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Thread: Oryoki documentation update

  1. #1

    Oryoki documentation update

    As you all probably know we have lost one of Jundo's Oryoki training videos and he has suggested we use the one from the Austin Zen Center in its place. I have talked to Jundo, and Shugen about starting to do some Oryoki session in the new year so I have been watching a lot of videos doing a fair amount of reading.

    I asked Jundo what to do when the Austin Zen Center and our documentation do things differently. I thought he would say, use our documentation but instead he told me to use the Japanese videos as authoritative sources.

    So I have been comparing and contrasting, and sharing with Shugen and Jundo. Usually our procedures agree with the Japanese videos but not always. Jundo suggested I work on updating our documentation to bring it in line with the Japanese training videos and I am working on it. I am sharing what I find with Shugen and Jundo, and I'll let everyone know where we net out.

    Many of the things are small, like which way to flip the drying cloth - or should it be flipped at all (answer is no flip). But there are some bigger ones like the fact that the procedures are a little different between lunch and dinner - lunch has tea and cleaning water, breakfast only cleaning water. Another is that when cleaning the water is sipped from the small bowl not the middle one.

    I just wanted to let you all know that this was in the works. And, also, I have been practicing with the newer procedures so Jakuden and I might do things a bit differently during Rohatsu.

    If you have any questions let me know. Deep bows to the hard work that went into creating our documentation.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  2. #2
    But there are some bigger ones like the fact that the procedures are a little different between lunch and dinner - lunch has tea and cleaning water, breakfast only cleaning water.
    Rather than teach all three meals (although dinner is technically "medicine," not a "meal" for Vinaya reasons), we decided to focus on one. So, maybe pick one, and just do that one while alerting folks of small differences for the other meals.

    Another is that when cleaning the water is sipped from the small bowl not the middle one.
    Yes, what happens is that, when tea is served for lunch, it is drunk from the middle bowl. However, after, when hot water for cleaning comes, the remaining hot water is drunk from the small bowl as the last bowl cleaned. However (correct me if I am wrong), that is really only a sip from the small bowl after the majority of the water is returned to the server, who comes around with a bucket (the water being poured in slowly with both hands, gently, so as not to splash). It will be difficult for us to recreate the server and the bucket for our home practice, so we may wish just to have the eater drink the entirety.

    Some water may be sipped from the middle bowl if, when transferring from the middle to small bowl, there is too much water in the middle bowl. NEVER put one's lips directly on the large Buddha Bowl, however.
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-24-2021 at 01:10 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  3. #3
    This is interesting, thank you Shinshi! Please update me on the tweaks if you can.

    Gassho
    Jakuu


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    清 道 寂田
    SEIDO JAKUDEN
    She/her.
    I am a novice priest. Any resemblance my posts may have to actual teachings about the Dharma, living or dead, is purely coincidental (and just my attempt to be helpful).

  4. #4
    Wonderful, Shinshi! Thank you for putting your effort into doing this. I look forward to seeing what emerges.

    Many of the things are small, like which way to flip the drying cloth - or should it be flipped at all (answer is no flip)
    I always enjoyed the flip but such is life!

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    ------------------------------------
    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.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Rather than teach all three meals (although dinner is technically "medicine," not a "meal" for Vinaya reasons), we decided to focus on one. So, maybe pick one, and just do that one while alerting folks of small differences for the other meals.



    Yes, what happens is that, when tea is served for lunch, it is drunk from the middle bowl. However, after, when hot water for cleaning comes, the remaining hot water is drunk from the small bowl as the last bowl cleaned. However (correct me if I am wrong), that is really only a sip from the small bowl after the majority of the water is returned to the server, who comes around with a bucket (the water being poured in slowly with both hands, gently, so as not to splash). It will be difficult for us to recreate the server and the bucket for our home practice, so we may wish just to have the eater drink the entirety.

    Some water may be sipped from the middle bowl if, when transferring from the middle to small bowl, there is too much water in the middle bowl. NEVER put one's lips directly on the large Buddha Bowl, however.
    Thank you Jundo. And yes, it is my understanding that most of the washing water is poured into the collecting container, then a last small bit is sipped from the small bowl. I think we should start with what is the morning meal as shown in the Austin Zen Center video. I will document both ways so we can look it later and make a final decision. Maybe we could do both down the road.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jakuden View Post
    This is interesting, thank you Shinshi! Please update me on the tweaks if you can.

    Gassho
    Jakuu


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

    I'll keep you posted. I think for this Rohatsu we don't have to do it exactly the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kokuu View Post
    Wonderful, Shinshi! Thank you for putting your effort into doing this. I look forward to seeing what emerges.



    I always enjoyed the flip but such is life!

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    Well, you still get to flip the lap cloth, so there is that.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    Last edited by Shinshi; 11-24-2021 at 08:57 PM.
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Jakuden View Post
    This is interesting, thank you Shinshi! Please update me on the tweaks if you can.

    Gassho
    Jakuu


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Hi Jakuden,

    This is all still a work in progress - but, at this point - the easiest way to approach this is to follow what the priest is doing in the Austin Zen Center video, it is really close to the Japanese. There are a few things that are different that you should watch out for.

    First she has an extra fold in her drying cloth and this effects both opening and closing the bowls. There is no extra fold in the two Japanese videos. Also after folding her more folded drying cloth into a Z she gives it a flip up (our documents have a flip over) (the flip is at1:16 in her video), the Japanese videos have no flip. You can see the Japanese way at the 29 second mark in the video below.

    Also, when putting away the lap cloth she flips it up from the bottom, in the Japanese videos they flip it over - which is how it is described in our documentation. You can see the flip at 22:00 mark in the video below.

    If I find more differences I will post them. Otherwise the Austin Zen Center is very close to the Japanese, both of which tend to be different than our documentation. Both orient the utensil case in the same way, the order of removal of the utensils is the same etc.

    One difference if you watch them is that Austin Zen Center is really doing the morning meal. The Japanese the main meal at noon. The main meal has Tea, and the hungry ghost sequence.




    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  7. #7
    This is such a rabbit whole that I never thought I would be going down.

    For some unknown reason they don't show the removal of the utensils from the utensil case in the last Japanese video I posted. However, in the other Japanese video Jundo posted (included below) they do.

    In the AZC video (3:04 mark) she makes a point of first taking out the chopsticks placing two fingers on top of the chopsticks and flipping her hand over as she sets them down - so the thumb is on top at the end. Same for spoon and then setsu.

    However, in the Japanese video below (6:40 mark) you can see that they all first take out the chopsticks with their thumb on top - flipping so their fingers are on top when they finish. Same for spoon. But for the setsu they change and start with fingers on top and flip and slide the setsu between medium and small bowl.

    I'll check with Jundo and see if he has an opinion.




    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    This is such a rabbit whole that I never thought I would be going down.

    For some unknown reason they don't show the removal of the utensils from the utensil case in the last Japanese video I posted. However, in the other Japanese video Jundo posted (included below) they do.

    In the AZC video (3:04 mark) she makes a point of first taking out the chopsticks placing two fingers on top of the chopsticks and flipping her hand over as she sets them down - so the thumb is on top at the end. Same for spoon and then setsu.

    However, in the Japanese video below (6:40 mark) you can see that they all first take out the chopsticks with their thumb on top - flipping so their fingers are on top when they finish. Same for spoon. But for the setsu they change and start with fingers on top and flip and slide the setsu between medium and small bowl.

    I'll check with Jundo and see if he has an opinion.




    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    Jundo says Go with Tokyo, or words to that effect.

    I feel like I am finally getting close to having this all sorted out.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  9. #9
    Jundo said ...

    When no know, do Tokyo! (A rhyme). Komazawa University is in Tokyo, by the way.

    Sometimes (more than sometimes), these "traditions" start because someone makes a mistake, and everyone copies it, and then it is the new "tradition."

    On small points like this, if we get it "wrong" too, we can just call it "The Way of the 'Treeleaf Style/School' of Oryoki'
    Also,

    One difference if you watch them is that Austin Zen Center is really doing the morning meal. The Japanese the main meal at noon. The main meal has Tea, and the hungry ghost sequence.
    By that, do you mean leaving a few grains of food on the top of the Setsu handle, to be collected for the Hungry Ghosts? We definitely should include that in our Ceremony, although it will have to be adjusted in some way as nobody comes around to collect it (the servers come around with what looks like a tiny wooden household whiskbroom/scraper and dust pan, seen at 26:30 in the above Komazawa video). I would encourage folks to place it somehow on the serving tray or a small dish at the side, then leave it outside under a tree for the birds and insects later (that is actually what the Japanese do with the collections) ... something like that.

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-25-2021 at 12:19 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  10. #10
    By that, do you mean leaving a few grains of food on the top of the Setsu handle, to be collected for the Hungry Ghosts? We definitely should include that in our Ceremony, although it will have to be adjusted in some way as nobody comes around to collect it (the servers come around with what looks like a tiny wooden household whiskbroom and dust pan). I would encourage folks to place it somehow on the serving tray or a small dish at the side, then leave it outside under a tree for the birds and insects later (that is actually what the Japanese do with the collections) ... something like that.
    I think that is what we have always done.

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    ------------------------------------
    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.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    Jundo said ...



    Also,



    By that, do you mean leaving a few grains of food on the top of the Setsu handle, to be collected for the Hungry Ghosts? We definitely should include that in our Ceremony, although it will have to be adjusted in some way as nobody comes around to collect it (the servers come around with what looks like a tiny wooden household whiskbroom/scraper and dust pan, seen at 26:30 in the above Komazawa video). I would encourage folks to place it somehow on the serving tray or a small dish at the side, then leave it outside under a tree for the birds and insects later (that is actually what the Japanese do with the collections) ... something like that.

    Gassho, J
    Yes, the few grains on the Setsu handle that is collected. I think it is a great idea to include it, it feels important to me. As you say, we will have to modify it a bit but we will get it in.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  12. #12
    I turns out there are more differences. They get more and more subtle.

    In addition to the difference of the extra fold in the Austin video: in the Japanese video they place the drying cloth down on the utensils and then rotate them counter clockwise as they set them down, so the end of the utensil case is facing right. In the Austin video they do the little flip up and set them down turning clock wise, end of case facing left. In the Austin video she makes a point of saying that the end of the case always faces to the left.

    When using the drying cloth on the bowls the Japanese bring the cloth to the bowl from the bottom while in the Austin video she brings it down from the top.

    In the Japanese videos they sort of just crumple up the drying cloth while in the Austin video she has a particular way of working the cloth in the bowl.

    In the Japanese video they are actually pulling food from the server with the spoon as food is delivered in the Buddha bowl and then they leave it there. In the Austin video the spoon is placed in the Buddha bowl during the Bowl Raising verse. I was just reading something in the Les Kaye Oryoki pdf that might explain the difference.

    In the live Japanese video when they place the setsu in the Buddha bowl, while retrieving the spoon for mouth washing, they grab the spoon with their ring finger in one motion (I think that might be what we did). In the Austin video she makes two distinct, separate moves. Setsu down first then picking up the spoon. Interestingly the Japanese training video doesn't do like the live Japanese video.

    During the bowl raising verse, the Japanese lay out the chopsticks in a very specific two handed manner - Right hand on the handles, left hand at the pointed end. In the Austin video she just lays them down.

    When wet cleaning the Buddha Bowl the Japanese leave the bowl on the mat, in the Austin video she brings it to her left knee and cleans it there.

    When picking up and placing the lap cloth, the Japanese leave it long and flip it over the top. In the Austin video she puts an extra fold in the lap cloth and flips it up from the bottom. She says the extra fold is because we use larger nap cloths in the West.

    After mouth washing the Japanese videos use the same orientation of the chop sticks and spoon, but they lay them down on the left side - below the Buddha bowl. In the Austin video she lays them down on the right side.

    And that is what I have seen so far.

    So I know this feels like kind of a lot and a bit messy. I wanted to write them all down here so that they were available as a reference in the future.

    I am looking at some other things today and I think I might have a way to kind of reconcile all this so it is less messy.

    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    Last edited by Shinshi; 11-27-2021 at 10:06 PM.
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  13. #13
    Treeleaf Unsui / Engineer Sekishi's Avatar
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    Virginia, USA
    I'mma just leave this here:
    https://www.sotozen.com/eng/practice...ki/page-1.html

    Nicely illustrated and broken down into step by step instructions. The chants themselves are a little different than the ones we've used for the past few years though.

    Gassho,
    Sekishi
    #sat #lah
    sekishi
    石志

    He/him. As a novice priest-in-training, this is simply an expression of my opinion. Please take it with a grain of salt.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Sekishi View Post
    I'mma just leave this here:
    https://www.sotozen.com/eng/practice...ki/page-1.html

    Nicely illustrated and broken down into step by step instructions. The chants themselves are a little different than the ones we've used for the past few years though.

    Gassho,
    Sekishi
    #sat #lah
    Thank you Sekishi. I have been all through these as well as the older ones that these replace. as I recall, Jundo has said in the past that he thinks there are some issues with these. But more, they are not explicit enough to resolve the discrepancies. I have also looked at the videos from ZMM and Minnesota Zen Center but they are not useful in helping resolve these questions either. I have looked at every Oryoki resource I could find. My head gets to swimming sometimes.

    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  15. #15
    Treeleaf Unsui / Engineer Sekishi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Virginia, USA
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Thank you Sekishi. I have been all through these as well as the older ones that these replace. as I recall, Jundo has said in the past that he thinks there are some issues with these. But more, they are not explicit enough to resolve the discrepancies. I have also looked at the videos from ZMM and Minnesota Zen Center but they are not useful in helping resolve these questions either. I have looked at every Oryoki resource I could find. My head gets to swimming sometimes.
    Ok. I just wanted to make sure. Iím afraid Iíve only been half paying attention to the oryoki discussion.

    Gassho,
    Sekishi
    #sat #lah


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    sekishi
    石志

    He/him. As a novice priest-in-training, this is simply an expression of my opinion. Please take it with a grain of salt.

  16. #16


    Where or where can we find the TRUE way?? (A Koan)
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  17. #17
    So this is kind of interesting, at least to me.

    I found a pdf of Dogen's pure standards for the Zen community: a translation of the Eihei shingi by Dan Leighton and Shohaku Okumura. It was in the wayback machine.

    In it Dogen writes:

    The manner of setting out the bowls is: first gassho* and untie the knot on the wrapping cloths around the
    bowls. Take the bowl wiping cloth and fold it up, once horizontally and into three layers vertically.


    Changed my mind. I now think this sounds like how it is done in the Japanese videos

    [After the events this week I felt compelled to come back and add that I also bought a copy online. It should be here next week]

    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    Last edited by Shinshi; 11-28-2021 at 11:20 PM.
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  18. #18
    I commend you, Shinshi! I am currently struggling with oryoki and I am impressed by how you are able to notice these differences and document them, let alone memorize any of them!

    Gassho
    求道芸化 Kyūdō Geika
    I am just a priest-in-training, please do not take anything I say as a teaching.

  19. #19
    For historical reasons, Shinshi, you might be interested in this book by Rev. Yifa on the first, extant Zen Monastic Code back in China, published in 1103, so over 100 years before Dogen would have come to China. It is the Chanyuan qinggui (Rules of Purity for the Chan Monastery), compiled by a monk named Daoan. Daoan himself created many procedures, or there were earlier "Rules of Purity" that he based these on, but they are now lost.

    (Please recall my rule of thumb, from recent discussions, that academic and Buddhist books can be used more freely than entertainment books if not easily available.

    I believe in the distinction.)

    https://terebess.hu/zen/Chanyuan-qinggui.pdf

    It has little historical nuggets that might interest a real Oryoki Otaku (Otaku: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otaku ) like you:

    Regarding mealtime rituals, Chanyuan qinggui indicates that before taking their meals, monks would chant the ten epithets of the Buddhas and bodhisattvas, a custom preserved in Chinese monasteries to the present day. The content of the chant is as follows:

    “The Pure Dharma Body Vairocana Buddha, the Perfect Reward Body
    Vairocana, the Ŕ‚kyamuni Buddha with His Myriad Transformation
    Bodies, the Venerable Buddha Maitreya Who Will Descend and Be
    Reborn in This World in the Future, All the Buddhas in Ten Directions and Three Ages, the Great Holy MaŮjuýrÓ Bodhisattva, the Great
    Practice Samantabhadra Bodhisattva, the Great Compassion Avalokiteývara Bodhisattva, and All the Great Bodhisattvas. Great PrajŮ‚p‚ramit‚!”48

    Ui Hakuju asserts that this chant originated with Daoan and his regulations.49

    According to the Four Part Vinaya, Indian monks chanted verses after their meals.50 As Daoxuan tells us this tradition was altered in China by Daoan, who began the practice of circumambulating with burning incense and chanting prior to the meal. Daoxuan himself considered this change to be appropriate and adopted the routine for the Chinese LŁ school.51 This represents yet another monastic practice that to the present day is thought to have originated with Daoan

    ...

    Chanyuan qinggui describes mealtime protocol in great detail, providing instructions on which door to use to enter the dining hall; when, where, and how to sit; how bowls and utensils must be arranged; what verses to recite; how to eat; how to clean up afterwards; and so on. For example, “Attendance at Meals” in Fascicle 1
    [42] describes the proper procedure for ringing the bell to signal the beginning of a meal. According to the Vinaya texts, the striking of a bell to indicate mealtime was already established as a practice during the time of the Buddha. Initially, monks were not in the habit of arriving in unison to receive their meals. This lack of order tended to frustrate the laypeople offering food. Thus the Buddha pronounced that a regular mealtime should be arranged.24 When Rahula, the son
    of the Buddha, complained that the senior monk Ŕ‚riputra consistently received the best food offered by laypeople, the Buddha established the rule that food should be distributed equally to all. He further decreed that a special instrument should be used to summon all monks to the meals.25 In the Five Part Vinaya26 a story is told in which several monks had started to eat their food without waiting until everyone had been served. When laypeople criticized this behavior, the Buddha instructed the monks to wait until all had received their food

    ... From “Attendance at Meals” we learn that in Chan monasteries monks took their two meals seated on the platforms in the Sangha hall. Yijing [Chinese monk who travelled to India to find the "True" customs there ... kind of like Shinshi now searching for the True Oryoki ] criticized this practice, asserting that while the custom in China is for monks to sit in rows and consume their food in a crosslegged position, such practices are unheard of in India, where monks sit on small chairs (seven inches high and one foot square on top) with their legs dropping to the floor. Yijing argued that when Buddhism was first introduced to China, monks followed the Indian practice, but beginning in the Jin dynasty the error of sitting on platforms with legs crossed was introduced. Even monks who came to China from India, Yijing contended, whether Indian or Chinese, were never able to correct this practice. According to the sacred tradition established by the Buddha, the platform should be one and a half feet in height. In China the platforms are higher than two feet. Thus it is inappropriate to sit on such a platform, Yijing concluded, for to do so violates the precepts.

    ...

    Chanyuan qinggui specifies that the serving of meals should be done by a specific class of untonsured servers called purity-keepers (jingren),79 a term adopted from the Vinayas. In the Vinaya texts, the role of the purity-keeper (P‚li kappiya-k‚raka) is to serve as mediator, keeping monks away from activities that are improper for them to undertake yet need to be fulfilled. Thus the jingren, by performing these tasks, help maintain the purity of the clergy.80
    Here are SOME of the actual rules, but if you really want to dig into the whole thing, it is pages 123 to 129 at the link above:

    To correctly display a nest of bowls, the monk should first bow and untie his cloth bundle.175 He takes out the bowl wiper176 and folds the cloth into a small shape. He then takes out his spoon and chopstick bag and places them horizontally, close in front of him. Next the clean towel177 is used to cover the knees, after which the cloth bundle is completely opened and the three corners closest to him are folded over and neatly joined together at the center, while the far corner is allowed to drape over the edge of the platform. He then uses both hands to unfold the mat.178 With his right hand facing down, he holds the corner of the mat closest to him on the right side and places it over the top of the bowls in front of him. Then, with the left hand facing up, he reaches under the mat to pick up the bowls and places them on the left side of the mat. Using the fingertips of both hands, he takes out the three smaller bowls179 stacked together and places
    them on the mat one at a time without making any noise. If his seat is narrow, he should display only three of his bowls. He then opens the bag to take out his spoon and chopsticks.180 (When removing these items, he should take out the chopsticks first. When replacing them, he should put the spoon in first.) He places the chopsticks and spoon horizontally behind the first bowl, with the handles to the side of his upper shoulder. The brush181 he places on the edge of the mat to the side of the lower shoulder with the handle facing out. He then waits for the offering of food to all sentient beings.

    ...

    To correctly receive the food, the monk should hold the bowl with both hands and lower his hands close to the mat. The bowl should be held level.185 The monk should gauge the amount of food served him; he should not request too much and leave unfinished food. He must wait until the food has been distributed and the rector has struck with the hammer186 before he lifts up his bowl to make the offering. After the hammer has struck, he presses his hands together in honor
    of the food and performs the five contemplations:187

    one, to ponder the effort necessary to supply this food and to appreciate its origins;
    two, to reflect on one’s own virtue being insufficient to receive the offering;
    three, to protect the mind’s integrity, to depart from error, and, as a general principle, to avoid being greedy;
    four, at the same time to consider the food as medicine and bodily nourishment, preventing emaciation;
    five, to receive this food as necessary for attaining enlightenment.

    After this comes the offering of food to all sentient beings. [53] (Before the completion of the five contemplations the food cannot be considered one’s own portion and therefore cannot be offered to sentient beings.) While the monks perform the offering of food to all sentient beings, they chant a verse:

    “All spirit beings and deities, / Now I offer you this food. /
    May this food be spread in all ten directions / For all spirit beings anddeities to share.”188

    [54] When eating, the monk brings the bowl to his mouth and not his mouth to the bowl.189 The top half of the outside of the bowl is considered pure, while the bottom half is considered soiled.190 The thumb is placed inside the bowl, on its rim, and the second and third fingers are placed outside, on the bottom, while the fourth and fifth are not used at all.191 The method of holding smaller bowls is the same. When lifting or placing the bowls, or when picking up the spoon
    or chopsticks, the monk should not make any noise
    Last edited by Jundo; 11-29-2021 at 12:53 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  20. #20
    Thank you Jundo. I'll look at these.

    I have to admit, once I find a loose thread I have a hard time not pulling on it. If that leads to another loose thread - I'm off.

    Youtube and Google don't help. They both keep offering up recommendations that lead me even further down the rabbit hole.


    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Thank you Jundo. I'll look at these.
    They are posted for your historical amusement and reflection alone, nothing to emulate in our procedures.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Geika View Post
    I commend you, Shinshi! I am currently struggling with oryoki and I am impressed by how you are able to notice these differences and document them, let alone memorize any of them!

    Gassho
    Thank you Geika, if I can help in any way let me know.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  23. #23
    I have written up everything I think I know, along with a recommendation, and sent it off to Jundo. 4 - pages so probably overkill He let me know it probably won't be until after Rohatsu until he can take a look.

    I am going to step away from the rabbit hole now as I am kind of falling behind on other things.

    It has been really interesting so far, interesting to see where we will go.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  24. #24
    One more little bit of trivia.

    Google translate tells me that this video is from "Komazawa University Taketomo Dormitory". Komazawa is one of Japan's oldest universities and Wikipedia tells us:

    "Its history starts in 1592, when a seminary was established to be a center of learning for the young monks of the Sōtō sect, one of the two main Zen Buddhist traditions in Japan."

    It is where both Shōhaku Okumura and Yuko Okumura went to university.

    And one other notable alum is Shunryu Suzuki - who of course was the one that created the original version of how Oryoki is done at the San Fransisco Zen Center!

    And that kind of feels like everything coming full circle for me.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi


    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    One more little bit of trivia.

    Google translate tells me that this video is from "Komazawa University Taketomo Dormitory". Komazawa is one of Japan's oldest universities and Wikipedia tells us:

    "Its history starts in 1592, when a seminary was established to be a center of learning for the young monks of the Sōtō sect, one of the two main Zen Buddhist traditions in Japan."

    It is where both Shōhaku Okumura and Yuko Okumura went to university.

    And one other notable alum is Shunryu Suzuki - who of course was the one that created the original version of how Oryoki is done at the San Fransisco Zen Center!

    And that kind of feels like everything coming full circle for me.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi


    Another notable bit of trivia ... purely by chance (or Karmic connection), just where I found an apartment when first moving to Tokyo, I lived directly across the street from Komazawa University. I lived there about 10 years. Now, in hindsight, I wish I had made more use of the resources. However, I attended some lectures, used the library, and even sat in the Zendo in the video.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  26. #26
    Hi everybody,

    I have a question.

    Oryoki is a Zen practice that arose out of how the medieval Japanese military ate their meals.
    It is very healthy and has only 3 small and limited portions of food: miso soup, vegetable concoction, and rice.
    The manner of eating is highly ritualized.

    l don't know why in monasteries we eat fast ?

    Perhaps ....i am wrong

    Thank you

    Sorry for running a bit long......

    Gassho
    Life itself is the only teacher.
    一 Joko Beck


    STLah
    安知 Anchi

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by omom View Post
    Hi everybody,

    I have a question.

    Oryoki is a Zen practice that arose out of how the medieval Japanese military ate their meals.
    It is very healthy and has only 3 small and limited portions of food: miso soup, vegetable concoction, and rice.
    The manner of eating is highly ritualized.

    l don't know why in monasteries we eat fast ?

    Perhaps ....i am wrong

    Thank you

    Sorry for running a bit long......

    Gassho
    Oh, no, where did you hear this about the Japanese military??? They had no time for ritual and chanting! Where did you hear that??

    No, it originated in China over 1000 years ago (see what I posted above to Shinshi).

    ... Zen Monastic Code back in China, published in 1103, so over 100 years before Dogen would have come to China. It is the Chanyuan qinggui (Rules of Purity for the Chan Monastery), compiled by a monk named Daoan. Daoan himself created many procedures, or there were earlier "Rules of Purity" that he based these on, but they are now lost. ... Chanyuan qinggui describes mealtime protocol in great detail, providing instructions on which door to use to enter the dining hall; when, where, and how to sit; how bowls and utensils must be arranged; what verses to recite; how to eat; how to clean up afterwards; and so on.
    We eat fast in monasteries because, first we chant SLOWLY to remember how sacred eating is, then the actual eating is beyond "likes and dislikes." It is just medicine to keep us going! So, we don't eat slow and "enjoy," nor too fast. We just eat!

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  28. #28
    Thank you for clarifying.

    Oryoki is such a great practice! l really like it.

    Thank you so much


    A deep bow of gratitude,
    Last edited by Anchi; 11-30-2022 at 07:01 AM.
    Life itself is the only teacher.
    一 Joko Beck


    STLah
    安知 Anchi

  29. #29
    I wish to become comfortable with oryoki but I confess it makes me very anxious. I understand why the meal is eaten so quickly, but I risk severe medical consequences if I don’t very thoroughly chew my food. So I try to find something very easy to digest and eat a very small amount in order to participate. Even so, I feel like my limitations hinder me from benefiting from the practice.
    Gassho,
    Naiko
    st

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Naiko View Post
    I wish to become comfortable with oryoki but I confess it makes me very anxious. I understand why the meal is eaten so quickly, but I risk severe medical consequences if I donít very thoroughly chew my food. So I try to find something very easy to digest and eat a very small amount in order to participate. Even so, I feel like my limitations hinder me from benefiting from the practice.
    Gassho,
    Naiko
    st
    I say, small amount of porridge, or soup.. or just some tea.. go through the ritual wholeheartedly, food in the bowls or no food.


    SatToday lah
    Bion
    美音

    -------------------------
    Please consider whatever I might say as my own ideas, experiences and understanding, and not zen doctrine.

  31. #31

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by Naiko View Post
    I wish to become comfortable with oryoki but I confess it makes me very anxious. I understand why the meal is eaten so quickly, but I risk severe medical consequences if I don’t very thoroughly chew my food. So I try to find something very easy to digest and eat a very small amount in order to participate. Even so, I feel like my limitations hinder me from benefiting from the practice.
    Gassho,
    Naiko
    st
    Yes, what I would advise is to put a tiny amount of food in the bowl. It is really a practice and ritual, like tea ceremony or Zazenkai, as much as a meal. It is a practice, a dance, to pour oneself into. Wrapping and unwrapping the bowls, chanting, eating a bit, causes us to remember how sacred it is to have a mouth!

    So, do the Oryoki with a tiny bit of food, then after the ceremony is done ... afterwards, grab a sandwich!

    Gassho, J

    STLah
    Last edited by Jundo; 12-03-2021 at 11:11 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  33. #33
    Thank you, Jundo!
    Naiko
    st

  34. #34
    I found this video of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi doing Oryoki at SFZC. It is in black and white and has no sound.

    https://app.sfzc.org/m/I4Y4YHi8/suzu...hi-oryoki-meal

    One thing I found surprising was that he does the little extra fold of the drying cloth that they still do at SFZC. I had thought that, because he went to the same school as where the Japanese Oryoki video was filmed, and likely did Oryoki there - I thought he would have done the same drying cloth fold that we see in the Japanese video. My idle speculation was that maybe it had gotten inserted along the way for some reason. But you can see him do it in the video.

    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    I found this video of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi doing Oryoki at SFZC. It is in black and white and has no sound.

    https://app.sfzc.org/m/I4Y4YHi8/suzu...hi-oryoki-meal

    One thing I found surprising was that he does the little extra fold of the drying cloth that they still do at SFZC. I had thought that, because he went to the same school as where the Japanese Oryoki video was filmed, and likely did Oryoki there - I thought he would have done the same drying cloth fold that we see in the Japanese video. My idle speculation was that maybe it had gotten inserted along the way for some reason. But you can see him do it in the video.

    Gassho, Shinshi

    SaT-LaH
    A Koan: How does on fold AND not fold a drying cloth at the same time??



    Gassho, J

    STLah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  36. #36
    Hi Folks,

    Well, it has been a while since my last post - my apologies. Life has taken some interesting turns this last year which took me away from this project. I have been working on it the last few weeks and am back up to speed.

    My goal is to have a final version of our new Treeleaf Oryoki procedure by the end of Dec., but I think it will be sooner. If all goes well, I plan to start up monthly Oryoki in Feb. We will see how it goes from there.

    If you are in my Oryoki session on Sat during Rohatsu I will be mostly following what I have developed - so it will be a little different than what is in the Rohatsu documentation.

    I reread The Dharma for Taking Food (Fushukuhanpo) chapter in Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community today. It is interesting how much of what is written there is still part of the ceremony today.


    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Hi Folks,

    Well, it has been a while since my last post - my apologies. Life has taken some interesting turns this last year which took me away from this project. I have been working on it the last few weeks and am back up to speed.

    My goal is to have a final version of our new Treeleaf Oryoki procedure by the end of Dec., but I think it will be sooner. If all goes well, I plan to start up monthly Oryoki in Feb. We will see how it goes from there.

    If you are in my Oryoki session on Sat during Rohatsu I will be mostly following what I have developed - so it will be a little different than what is in the Rohatsu documentation.

    I reread The Dharma for Taking Food (Fushukuhanpo) chapter in Dogen's Pure Standards for the Zen Community today. It is interesting how much of what is written there is still part of the ceremony today.


    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    Just FYI,

    The January, February, March Body Work will also be Oryoki Lessons for the Priests, based on this old version (which I need to edit and repost). See posts 4 thru 6 here:

    https://www.treeleaf.org/forums/show...l=1#post299691

    Like I said, I will re-edit those before using them this time.

    Let us just make sure that your Lessons and the Priest Training version will be coordinated and on the same page.

    Thanks for doing this Shin.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  38. #38
    Hi folks,

    So it has been decided that we will be taking a bit of a different tack for the monthly Oryoki and launch data is now probably pushed back. I am sorry I posted that it would be starting soon and then have to retract. I am sure we will come up with an even better procedure.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    空道 心志 Kudo Shinshi
    I am just a priest-in-training, any resemblance between what I post and actual teachings is purely coincidental.
    E84I - JAJ

  39. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by Shinshi View Post
    Hi folks,

    So it has been decided that we will be taking a bit of a different tack for the monthly Oryoki and launch data is now probably pushed back. I am sorry I posted that it would be starting soon and then have to retract. I am sure we will come up with an even better procedure.

    Gassho,

    Shinshi
    We will work it out. There are small questions to decide, such as whether to include a Hattan placemat for the lay folks or not (made of construction paper, folded into 9 squares, not the traditional lacquered ... and EXPENSIVE! ... version in a traditional kit). Here is one for a mere $150.00 U.S. ...

    https://www.designshop-jp.com/shopdetail/004008000113/



    I was thinking of just kids' construction paper folded like that ... a lot cheaper, and no problem if the soup gets spilled ...

    tsuku.jpg

    Also, the suiban "water board" could be added, just a small piece of wood would do ...

    tsuku.jpg

    I was also thinking what could be a good "do it at home" utensil case, as the mailing envelope we use for Rohatsu is not really durable. I would suggest maybe the cover for a folding umbrella, or something like that?

    tsuku.jpg
    Last edited by Jundo; 12-01-2022 at 03:28 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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