Branching Streams is a network of affiliate Dharma centers and Sanghas in the Zen lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi
IN THIS COLUMN:
Tips for connecting your community through Zoom from Jon Voss
Tova Green’s April 2020 Branching Streams Newsletter
New Book: A Wild Love for the World: Joanna Macy and the Work of Our Times
Responses to the Climate Crisis
San Francisco Zen Center, and many others, are using Zoom to power online zendos, classes, practice discussions and the like. Zoom (https://zoom.us/) provides video conferencing services for individuals and organizations alike. It has become an essential part of both business and social life during the coronavirus pandemic. You do not need a Zoom account to participate, but you will need to download free software, available for Mac, PC, iPhone and Android devices. Free call-in numbers are also available for those without computer access.
If you’re interested in learning more, Jon Voss (bio: http://consulting.jumpslide.com/jon) is now hosting a weekly drop-in clinic for Branches and Streams members Wednesdays at 11am Pacific. Jon hosts the Mid City Zen virtual zendo, as well as SFZC morning zazen occasionally. Please see our new Resources for Online Zendos and Zoom Hosts, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Tova Green’s April 2020 Branching Streams newsletter contains:
• A write-up on Tova’s recent trip to Texas
• Information on how to connect with your Sangha through Zoom
• The possibility of setting up regular Branching Streams support calls
• An update on how San Francisco Zen Center is coping with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
• And more
A Wild Love for the World: Joanna Macy and the Work of Our Times, edited by Stephanie Kaza, was just published by Shambhala. Here’s a message from Stephanie, a keynote speaker at our 2019 Branching Streams conference:
“Greetings to all, wherever you are, in whatever degree of seclusion due to the pandemic. May you all be well and stay healthy as we live through this epic time in history. This is a wonderful book! There is much love here and the book is so needed in these difficult times. Let us celebrate that!” The book includes essays by Taigen Leighton of Ancient Dragon Zen Center and others whose names will be familiar to you.
Since this was one of the themes of the 2019 Branching Streams Conference, inspired by Stephanie Kaza’s presentation, I invited groups to share their ways of responding to the climate crisis and heard back from six groups. If you didn’t respond, it’s not too late to send your news for future newsletters.
IN THIS COLUMN:
Tova Green’s recent visit to Texas
Tova Green’s Letter to Branching Streams Teachers and Leaders about COVID-19
Map of Affiliates
Dear distantly intimate friends (a phrase borrowed from Kevin Heffernan of Richmond, Virginia Zen Center),
I returned from visiting San Antonio, Austin, and Houston Zen Centers on March 17th, as leaders at all three centers were planning how best to respond to the Covid-19 virus. At Houston Zen Center, Abbot Gaelyn Godwin livestreamed my dharma talk through her computer, the first livestreamed talk HZC had offered. Here’s a link to that talk.
I met with sangha leaders, board members, and practitioners at all three centers, and enjoyed
Texas hospitality. A member of Houston ZC wanted to be sure I saw bluebonnets (the Texas
state flower) in bloom and invited me to walk along Buffalo Bayou (photo above; I’m wearing an Austin ZC t-shirt).
The city I returned to had just begun to shelter in place. The airport was nearly deserted. San Francisco Zen Center had already closed to the public. I began two weeks of quarantine, which ended last night.
Branching Streams liaison Tova Green recently sent a letter to Branching Streams affiliate Sanghas regarding the ongoing global COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic. The letter concerns best practices for Sanghas as they decide how to navigate the ongoing health crisis. You can read Tova’s letter here.
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