Here are several events that bring me joy:
Heart of Compassion Zen Sangha in Pt. Reyes, CA just celebrated its fifth anniversary and its first Jukai ceremony. Seven students received the precepts from founding teacher Jaune Evens. Also, Wendy Johnson recently joined Jaune as co-leader of Heart of Compassion “Her wondrous dharma presence and ‘rooted practice’ nourishes and inspires our (sometimes) weary hearts and minds,” says Jaune.
Red Cedar Zen Community in Bellingham, WA will be having an open house for their new home on August 21. Board President Joden Bob Rose writes, “Almost two years ago, we “jumped off the hundred-foot flagpole,” and left our home on Forest Street. We now have come to the place where we will plant our blade of grass. On August 15, we will close the purchase of 2509 Cedarwood as the new home of the Red Cedar Zen Community.”
On July 30, Reirin Gumbel, guiding teacher of Milwaukee Zen Center, returned from the first Pride event in Watertown, Wisconsin, “a hardcore fundamentalist Christian city. But there are now five churches who are openly affirming,” Reirin writes. “The area was fenced and heavily protected by police. I had a conversation with a group outside who were calling us sinners. I don’t have the illusion that I can change anybody’s conviction, but these people are serious and worthy of attention. I told them I was happy for them to pray for me. To the question if I realized that Jesus was God’s son, I answered that I thought that to be true, and that they also were God!”
Some offerings you may want to know about:
Paula Arai, author of Women Living Zen and Bringing Zen Home, The Healing Heart of Japanese Women’s Rituals is giving a talk via Zoom hosted by Richmond Zen Center on Monday, August 8, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. EST. In her talk, Zen Women’s Wisdom, Paula will share how Japanese Sōtō Zen women, both lay and monastic, have responded to challenges historically, institutionally, and personally by drawing on Dōgen’s teachings and their own wisdom. Please register for the Zoom meeting link. Suggested teaching donation $10 >>(include note: “Arai teaching donation”).
Bamboo in the Wind Zen Center in Sunnyvale CA will launch their Fall class series, “A Living View of the Abhidharma,” taught by Sensei Beth Jacobs. Classes are September 8 and 22, and October 6 and 20, 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. PST. Suggested reading is Jacob’s book, Abhidharma, The Original Buddhist Psychology, available online. Here is the link for more details or to register.
For meditators who want to enter Zen deeply, to investigate the mind of daily life, Houston Zen Center offers Entering the Path of Practice (EPP), an advanced program of guided exploration, study, and training, in three modules. The third module begins September 4 and ends October 29. Zen Priest Seirin Tim Schorre, senior HZC member Kyoshin Anna Mastantuono, and Zen Priest Gyōzan Royce Johnson lead the program. The third module focuses on Sangha. Participants entering the program may begin with any one of the three modules. Select here for the application and schedule . $150 is requested for each module. Scholarships are available.
Chapel Hill Zen Center writes that there are still a few in-person openings for the September 9 to 14 Genzo-e sesshin with Shohaku Okumura Roshi.
Okumura Roshi is also offering four online talks on Eihei Dogen’s Chinese Poems, August 4 to 7, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. EDT, hosted by Great Tree Zen Women’s Temple near Asheville, NC.
These offerings lead me to feel a sense of abundance in the dharma realm as I envision them radiating out to benefit all beings.