Tonight, at City Center we will have a ceremony for the five senior members of our community who are leaving for Enso Village this week –Arlene Lueck, Barbara Machtinger, Rosalie Curtis, Susan O’Connell, and Teah Strozer, followed by a celebratory dinner. A second ceremony and celebration will be held at GGF on Dec. 3rd for the four retirees leaving Green Gulch Farm and Temple…Meiya Wender, Emila Heller, Sukey Parmalee, and Mick Sopko. It reminds me of the importance of ceremonies in marking significant transitions in our lives.
I missed reporting on a Jukai Ceremony that occurred at Stone Willow Zendo in Spokane WA on September 29. Founding teacher Daya Goldschlag gave the precepts to Terran Campbell, who received the Dharma name Onryu Ekai, Gentle Dragon Wisdom Ocean. Daya noted, “Terran is a very long-time practitioner, and it was an honor to do that for them.” Daya received dharma transmission from Teah Strozer in September 2022, along with Ava Stanton, who leads Just Show Up sangha in Santa Monica CA, Shogen Danielson who is on the Teaching Council of Monterey Bay Zen Center, and Heather Iarusso who practices and teaches at San Francisco Zen Center.
A Stepping Down Ceremony for San Antonio Zen Center’s founding and guiding teacher Zenka Colin Gipson will be held at SAZC on December 16. After leading the sangha for ten years, Colin “is excited about practicing in a new way.”
Many Branching Streams Zen centers and sanghas are offering Rohatsu Sesshin varying in length from two to seven days, some in person and some hybrid, some residential and some commuting only. I will mention only a few.
Kannon Do Zen Meditation Center and Zen Heart Sangha in Mountain View and neighboring Menlo Park will jointly host a two-day Rohatsu sesshin at Kannon Do. Misha Shungen Merrill, founding teacher of Zen Heart Sangha, will lead the sesshin. Misha received Dharma transmission from Les Kaye, Kannon Do’s teacher emeritus. This sesshin will be held from 8 am – 5 pm each day, with a modified oryoki lunch.
Brooklyn Zen Center is offering a five day Rohatsu sesshin December 6 – December 10
Wednesday through Saturday: 8am – 8:30pm EST; Sunday: 6am – 1pm EST with Sarah Dōjin
Emerson, Charlie Korin Pokorny, and Kidō Ian Case in their urban Boundless Mind temple. Partial attendance will be permitted; minimum of three days’ consecutive attendance. More information and registration here.
For the first time since 2019, Ancient Dragon Zen Gate “will hold a five-day Rohatsu sesshin to celebrate Shakyamuni Buddha’s Great Awakening, Wednesday December 6th to Sunday the 10th. All are welcome to attend any one to five days, in person or online.” Hogetsu Laurie Belzer and Taigen Leighton will co-lead the sesshin, focusing on the traditional Soto Zen teaching of meditation on the treasury of radiance. If you plan to attend, please register at https://www.ancientdragon.org/event/five-day-rohatsu-sesshin/ .
The Zen Buddhist Center Black Forest in Germany and Mountain Rain Zen Community in Vancouver BC will also be sitting Rohatsu sesshin.
I will join the City Center sangha in sesshin from December 2 to 9. It will be wonderful to sit with an awareness of all the Zen Centers and sanghas in the Suzuki Roshi lineage and other lineages who will be turning toward silence and stillness at the is time of great suffering in the world. May our practice radiate peace.