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Thread: The Continuing Tales of Gendo JinKan

  1. #351


    Thank you for your kindness

    Doshin
    Stlah

  2. #352


    Gassho,
    Kotei sat/lah today.

    義道 冴庭 / Gidō Kotei.
    Being a novice priest doesn't mean my writing about the Dharma is more substantial than yours. Actually, it might well be the other way round.

  3. #353
    I believe I heard a talk by Myoshen a teacher at a Zen Center in Pacific Northwest, a great inspiration, and JinKen you are an inspiration as I cope with the beginning of still greater practice with her urging, and your urging. By greater practice, I mean I pull back in so many ways making room for great young people like you. It is time for Tai Shi to let others carry peace to others.
    Gassho
    sat/lah
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  4. #354
    Quote Originally Posted by Jinkan View Post
    Yesterday in America it was Veterans Day and I went out and met up with a few homeless vets I know and bought them food. One of them was Ben a marine and combat veteran who I met years ago at the veterans hospital. He seemed alive, vibrant and happy when we chatted yesterday. He was going to try and enroll in a drug rehabilitation program and said he was looking for work.
    This morning I got a call from a hospital that there was a man found unconscious last night who was now in intensive care who was dying and all they found on this man was a card with me number. So I left in the middle of this morningís guest speakers talk and went to the hospital. It was Ben intubated and unconscious. He had at least three heart attacks since being admitted and wasnít expected to make it through the day. I told the nurse to contact the VA to get his next of kin information and stayed with him. He passed while his mother was driving to the hospital and I sat with her and her in the waiting room because she couldnít bear to see her dead child. I held her hand and told her that I had lost a daughter and then listened to her. The doctor came by and told her that her son had died of a methanphetamine overdose. They found him with the needle in his arm with pockets out turned because he was apparently robbed while he was unconscious. She broke down and said why did he have to do this what a waste. He wasted his life and now he is dead. She kept repeating it like a mantra. With her hands still in mine I told that I couldnít tell her why he did what he did and like all of us he wasnít perfect but he did not waste his life. I told her about the many kind acts I had seen him do for homeless people and the bravery he showed in helping others and trying to help himself. I told her of the many times he tried to get treatment. I shared about him wanting to come to our mediation group at the library. I told her that he wasnít a failure and didnít waste his life because no matter how many times he failed be it in recovery or getting a job. He kept trying and never gave up. So I write this hoping Ben will be an inspiration to you in your practice. Whether you think you broke precepts or struggle with sitting you havenít failed. You only fail if you give up.
    Gassho,
    JinKan
    Sat
    Wow Jinkan, I am sorry for the loss of your friend and for his mother's loss as well. Much metta to you all. You are a beautiful soul and also, it seems, was Ben.

    Gassho,
    SatLah
    Kelly

  5. #355
    I am grateful for your teachings, Jinkan.



    Myosho
    Sat Lah

  6. #356

  7. #357
    Treeleaf Priest Jinkan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
    Location
    Clovis, California U.S.A
    This week was a week of pain as finish this round of chemotherapy. Massively swollen from inflammation and retention from the multiple IV bags. Walking a chore as bones and muscles aches hinder movement. It is important in these times that St. John referred to as a dark night of the soul to cultivate acceptance, gratitude and recognize hope. Without them we will never make it through that dark night and see the dawn. If we don’t radically accept and let go the pain, anxiety, depression or whatever ills that are causing our distress we can never get better. We will get caught up in why’s. Why is this happening? Why am I in pain? Why can’t I be happy? With out acceptance even after the pain, depression and whatever else has left any relief you feel will be tempered by, why did I have to go through that. By not accepting and letting go of the situation you still cling to experience. By cultivating gratitude you can better accept pain, anxiety, depression or other ills. When I look at pain. I look at it with the eyes of gratitude because it reminds me that I’m alive and while I’m alive I can still practice and there is hope. Being grateful for these negative moments can also make it easier to gain insight from them. If we just label them as bad or negative states and we close ourselves off from the many teaching they can offer. Gratitude can slowly erase the dualistic mind of good and bad, and awaken insight. Lastly we need to recognize hope. Hope is the light on the horizon signaling the dawn. Hope can be the life preserver you cling to when all seems lost. Life preserver is very apropos for hope because many people who committed or tried to commit suicide did so because they lost hope. They didn’t have the hope that things would get better so they were left in a perpetual dark night. So recognize hope and cultivate it because when you bring the light of hope in those dark times you not only help yourself. You can be a beacon to others who are suffering as you are or were. You can become the lighthouse in the storm that gives them hope they will make it to shore.
    Gassho,
    JinKan
    Sat

  8. #358


    Hope is a powerful word for me

    Doshin
    Stlah

  9. #359
    Treeleaf Unsui Nengei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Minnesota's Driftless Area
    Thank you for your teaching, JinKan. Today, and every day, we sit with hope and equanimity.

    Gassho,
    Nengei
    Sat today. LAH.
    遜道念芸 Sondō Nengei (he/him)

    Please excuse any indication that I am trying to teach anything. I am a priest in training and have no qualifications or credentials to teach Zen practice or the Dharma.

  10. #360
    Treeleaf Unsui Onki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
    Location
    London Ontario Canada
    JinKan,

    What a different perspective. Pain, especially physical pain (fibromyalgia), for me at times leaves me feeling hopeless. I donít see any hope. I will not accept that I have pain in my life. I think about how my life was when I didnít have any pain. I miss those days.

    Why am I in pain? What can I do to stop the pain? Having pain is negative. There is nothing good about being in pain.

    This teaching gives me hope. It gives me a different way to look at pain. In this moment of my life I am experiencing pain. This is my reality. I need to accept this. However, despite being in chronic pain, there are still things that I can do to help others. I am not hopeless.

    I am going to work on not seeing pain in an absolutely negative way. There is much to learn from pain. And while I experience chronic pain in my life, I can share my experiences with others.

    Thank you for your Teachings,

    Gasshō,

    On

    Sat today/LAH

  11. #361
    JinKan, what a deep but difficult teaching. Gratitude and hope to bring us through any kind of pain, and the possibility of helping others even in the most pain.

    Gassho, Onkai
    Sat lah
    美道 Bidou Beautiful Way
    恩海 Onkai Merciful/Kind Ocean

    I have a lot to learn; take anything I say that sounds like teaching with a grain of salt.

  12. #362
    Thank you for sharing, Onki.

    Gassho, Onkai
    Sat lah
    美道 Bidou Beautiful Way
    恩海 Onkai Merciful/Kind Ocean

    I have a lot to learn; take anything I say that sounds like teaching with a grain of salt.

  13. #363
    I have all that you speak of and I have bipolar disorder and I have anxiety issues and I have Ankylosing Spondylitis which I take subQ injections for and 16 different pills each day but I donít have a threat of death hanging over me like you do I have anxiety problems not so much anymore. I feel for you and have had enough to understand you and I will sit for you this afternoon.
    sat/lah
    Gossho
    Deep bows.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  14. #364
    I said I would sit for you and I did so. I donít understand why your illnesses because I have no idea what youíre going through. I know youíre in constant pain and I understand that. May your day be filled with joy replacing your pain.
    Gassho
    deep bows
    Tai Shi.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  15. #365
    Thank you JinKan for your wonderful teaching and for sharing your Hope.

    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

  16. #366
    Treeleaf Priest Jinkan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
    Location
    Clovis, California U.S.A
    With Thanksgiving on Thursday I spent most of the earlier portions of this week practicing an oft overlooked and forgotten part of our practice. I cultivated trying to recognize silver linings in all situations. We often forget to train ourselves to see the positive in lifes many situations especially when we are confronted by something that seems wholly negative. This training while often forgotten or ignored is thoroughly needed because success in this training means gratitude and thankfulness will emerge from even the darkest moments and negative circumstances. It is the point of the Buddhist fable about a man walking in the hills enjoying nature when he is confronted by a mountain lion who chases him to the edge of a cliff. With no other option available, the man jumps over and is able to grab onto a vine. He dangles from the bottom but when he looks down he sees a bear looking up at him. The vine continues to hold him, offering some protection from both the mountain lion above and the bear below, when two mice appear from a burrow on the cliffside. They begin to eat away at the vine. While dangling precariously, the man sees a strawberry growing. He picks it, eats it, and smiles because it is so delicious. The fable points the truth of the above training and shows the obvious: Every circumstance, no matter how complex, challenging, and frustrating, contains a positive seed that should be nurtured. So I encourage you all to cultivate a mind that recognizes the silver linings in life. To cultivate a mind of thankfulness and gratitude. Spend this week leading up to Rohatsu cultivating the thankful mind by looking deeply at your lives learning to recognize the many things you should be thankful for and also looking deeply to find those elusive but ever present silver linings.

    The weeks earlier practice inspired me for this years Thanksgiving to help create and host a Treeleaf Special Event. It was “A Special Ceremony and Sitting of Gratitude and Thanks”. I was honored that so many joined me for a simple ceremony of thankfulness and a sitting cultivating gratitude and thankfulness. I know that we all have things we are thankful for. For some it is family, life and love. While for others it might be just getting through a day without alcohol. For me it is being alive and being able to do this ceremony and practice. So I welcomed all to join me in recognizing the many things we have to be thankful for and to give thanks with a special ceremony and sitting on this day that Americans have named Thanksgiving.

    https://www.youtube.com/live/KxT6CRg...5UarYNQkEAljuQ

    Side Note: I’m in tons of pain. I went to the library to run me meditation group and as I was laying extra zafu and zabutons down I both felt and heard a loud pop followed a bunch of crunching. Those sounds and sensations were the heralded of such a high level of pain that I almost started actively crying and weeping out loud as I couldn’t keep tears from streaming down me face. So I’m heading to the ER. I will not be posting me regular weekly update but I may post an update following this ER visit.
    Gassho
    JinKan
    Sat

  17. #367

    The Continuing Tales of Gendo JinKan

    Quote Originally Posted by Jinkan View Post
    With Thanksgiving on Thursday I spent most of the earlier portions of this week practicing an oft overlooked and forgotten part of our practice. I cultivated trying to recognize silver linings in all situations. We often forget to train ourselves to see the positive in lifes many situations especially when we are confronted by something that seems wholly negative. This training while often forgotten or ignored is thoroughly needed because success in this training means gratitude and thankfulness will emerge from even the darkest moments and negative circumstances. It is the point of the Buddhist fable about a man walking in the hills enjoying nature when he is confronted by a mountain lion who chases him to the edge of a cliff. With no other option available, the man jumps over and is able to grab onto a vine. He dangles from the bottom but when he looks down he sees a bear looking up at him. The vine continues to hold him, offering some protection from both the mountain lion above and the bear below, when two mice appear from a burrow on the cliffside. They begin to eat away at the vine. While dangling precariously, the man sees a strawberry growing. He picks it, eats it, and smiles because it is so delicious. The fable points the truth of the above training and shows the obvious: Every circumstance, no matter how complex, challenging, and frustrating, contains a positive seed that should be nurtured. So I encourage you all to cultivate a mind that recognizes the silver linings in life. To cultivate a mind of thankfulness and gratitude. Spend this week leading up to Rohatsu cultivating the thankful mind by looking deeply at your lives learning to recognize the many things you should be thankful for and also looking deeply to find those elusive but ever present silver linings.

    The weeks earlier practice inspired me for this years Thanksgiving to help create and host a Treeleaf Special Event. It was ďA Special Ceremony and Sitting of Gratitude and ThanksĒ. I was honored that so many joined me for a simple ceremony of thankfulness and a sitting cultivating gratitude and thankfulness. I know that we all have things we are thankful for. For some it is family, life and love. While for others it might be just getting through a day without alcohol. For me it is being alive and being able to do this ceremony and practice. So I welcomed all to join me in recognizing the many things we have to be thankful for and to give thanks with a special ceremony and sitting on this day that Americans have named Thanksgiving.

    https://www.youtube.com/live/KxT6CRg...5UarYNQkEAljuQ

    Side Note: Iím in tons of pain. I went to the library to run me meditation group and as I was laying extra zafu and zabutons down I both felt and heard a loud pop followed a bunch of crunching. Those sounds and sensations were the heralded of such a high level of pain that I almost started actively crying and weeping out loud as I couldnít keep tears from streaming down me face. So Iím heading to the ER. I will not be posting me regular weekly update but I may post an update following this ER visit.
    Gassho
    JinKan
    Sat

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

    My Thanksgiving Day was to be with my wife of 41 years. Though she cooked an 11 pound turkey, most of the meat was saved for other meals. We will have seven meals besides the Thanksgiving dinner and we were frugal about side dishes limiting ourselves to three without potatoes. I am very happy with this meal because it was delicious and does in the spirit of frugality.
    Gassho
    Thank you you
    Sat/lah
    Last edited by Tai Shi; 11-25-2023 at 09:33 PM.
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  18. #368
    Quote Originally Posted by Tai Shi View Post
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Thank goodness I am listening to people like you Jenkan you have an awesome point of view. You have been sick for a very long time and very sick. Yes you are teaching us how we should live in Dahana or gratitude which is serious giving and service. Thank goodness for your service and your kindness.
    Gassho
    Sat/lah


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  19. #369
    Thank you, JinKan, for your teaching. I hope something can be done about your pain and that this event doesn't curtail your mobility in the future. Much metta. I look forward to your posts.

    Gassho, Onkai
    Sat lah
    美道 Bidou Beautiful Way
    恩海 Onkai Merciful/Kind Ocean

    I have a lot to learn; take anything I say that sounds like teaching with a grain of salt.

  20. #370
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  21. #371
    Thank you for the teaching as you waited to go to ER. Really hope it wasn't too serious. Much Metta.

    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

  22. #372


    Doshin
    Stlah

  23. #373
    Treeleaf Priest Jinkan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
    Location
    Clovis, California U.S.A
    Last week and this week post Rohatsu has been utter agony. I have multiple spinal fractures from where a tumor weakened the spine. Every movement has been accompanied by pain as well as a bunch of neuropathic pain caused by pressure on nerve clusters. So coming in to this Rohatsu I had to completely change how I approached it. If this was a normal year and I was dealing with me normal pain and aches I would have just practiced while being honest about how I could practice. I would have used the twenty plus years of practice as a guide to know when to keep pushing me self and to bear through any discomfort and pain. This year however I didn’t have a lot of hard choices to make about me practice because me hands were pretty much tied. I was in too much pain to even consider sitting. So I adjusted me form and lay down.

    With Rohatsu normally being a highlight of me year. This year it was pain, frustration and depression. I was depressed because I couldn’t sit or even dawn me robes. I dared not attempt putting the Kimono and Koromo and the fire took out me Kesa. I was reminded of how ill I am and how bad me liver and prostate are by the amount of times I had to use the restroom during the sits and the horrors that came out of me. I would have been overwhelmed if by the pain and depression if I hadn’t learned through me practice…

    It’s not so much how you are doing but how you handle it. So when unbearable pain came instead of just getting caught up in the pain I adjusted me from to one that would allow me to let pain go. When I got bummed out I couldn’t wear me traditional robes I let go of me attachment to them and the depression departed. If I had gotten overwhelmed I would have reached out to me fellow priests and friends letting go fears that often accompany the asking of help. How we can deal with the negatives in life is what our practice is about. So look deeply and honestly through the eyes of your practice. Adjust form as necessary and let go fears, anger and pain. You might not get rid of these things. They may be a constant raging river in your life but through our practice you can learn to navigate the rapids.
    Gassho
    JinKan
    Laying Down

  24. #374
    Thank you, JinKan, as always for your teachings. I hope the pain abates and that you feel better. Much metta to you.

    Gassho, Onkai
    Sat lah
    美道 Bidou Beautiful Way
    恩海 Onkai Merciful/Kind Ocean

    I have a lot to learn; take anything I say that sounds like teaching with a grain of salt.

  25. #375
    Thank you JinKan. I was wondering how you were doing. Your lessons are always to deeply moving. I am inspired by your teaching every day.

    I hope they find a way to reduce your pain.

    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

  26. #376

    The Continuing Tales of Gendo JinKan

    I am so sorry for your pain and I hope you feel better as soon as possible and I know that youíre not going to feel well but Iím with you all the way. I fell in our living room and my dear wife called the ambulance took me to the hospital Where CT results were Three broken ribs and two in two places. I spent two days on my back at the hospital and learned how to use a walker properly. Now I have strict orders to use my walker. I was also assigned Physical Therapy and Occupation Therapy. I will be working on strengthening muscles especially legs and arms. Then core strengthening. I will be learning how to do ordinary exercises and stretching exercises. My situation is very different from yours because I am just getting older. I have had a productive and relatively happy life. Now I must take care. I am trying to be a better citizen and I will not let my problems get me down or get in my way and I am trying not to be negative. In my poetry I generally write positive thoughts and I genuinely believe the best poems teach us how to see the world and how to live with ourselves. Poetry can be a search light into the world and into our lives. JenKen I am with you in spirit and compassion for I cannot know what exactly you need or how you feel. But I l have had pain, both physical and mental. But my pain was mostly psychological and I have worked hard and now life is not as bad as it was, not like you. Again my heart does go out to you and I will think of you as I learn how to be okay as an old man.

    Gassho
    Sat/lah


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro he hi
    Last edited by Tai Shi; 12-07-2023 at 11:42 PM.
    Peaceful Poetry, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, 台 婆

  27. #377
    You are always already fully and elegantly dressed in your robes, JK, when physically unable to get them on.

    Gassho, J

    stlah
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  28. #378
    གཏོང་ལེན

    gassho
    sat, maybe some right doing
    Visiting unsui: salt liberally.

  29. #379
    Sitting for you, as you and with you, dear brother.
    Gassho,
    Kotei sat/lah today.

    義道 冴庭 / Gidō Kotei.
    Being a novice priest doesn't mean my writing about the Dharma is more substantial than yours. Actually, it might well be the other way round.

  30. #380


    Gassho, Michael
    Satlah

  31. #381
    Jinkan



    Doshin
    Stlah

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