In Zen, we say “When we eat in peace, we create the conditions for peace.” All of this starts in the kitchen, under the direction of the Tenzo. On Sunday, I had the great opportunity to watch the chefs of All Beings Zen, under the direction of Inryu Bobbi Ponce-Barger, create oryoki lunch for the Sanga during a one-day workshop at Woodburn Hill Farm. Watching Buddhists prepare food is an experience unlike any other (and eating the food is, too!)
Sutra copying is considered a merit in Buddhism. Other meritorious practices included the memorization and recitation of sutras. The effort of sutra copying is considered an expression of piety, and recognized as a devotional practice, since it comprises worship, literature, and calligraphy. Since early in history, it was also not uncommon for people to sponsor monks and nuns to recite or copy sutras, thus indirectly cultivating merit in one’s ancestors, family, and self by transference.
The practice of sutra copying originated in China. Sutra copying was imported to Korea in the third century.[During the Nara period (710-794) in Japan, the practice of sutra copying became very popular in society. —from Wikipedia
Sangha member Gilligan has generously donated Heart Sutra tracing papers from Korea for us.
Rev. Inryu was the visiting teacher for the Empty Hand Zen Center in New Rochelle NY from Jan 10-12th, 2016, while their guiding teacher Rev. Konin Cardenas was in San Francisco for her transmission ceremony.
Our resident priest Rev. Inryu officiated for a recent outdoor wedding in Arlington VA. We set up a simple Altar on a small table.
As part of the ceremony those in attendance were asked to close their eyes and take a moment to bring full attention to the current moment. Feeling their bodies, the air around them, the sounds in the environment and to observe their breathing. We then shared a moment of silence to settle into the beauty the moment and place.
The couple vowed to take refuge in Awakening, Truth and Community.
The vowed to support and cherish life, to live generously with an open heart, to remain faithful in relationship, to communicate honestly and simply, to treat all beings and each other with dignity and respect, to work for the benefit of others, to be humble, to not hand on to grudges or angered and to awaken to their connection to all life.Rev. Inryu has been the official celebrant for weddings in Maryland, Virginia, Georgia and Washington DC. She is a registered officiant with the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Virginia.
The photos above are from Phyllis Petronello Photography
Taking the All Beings Zen Practice into the Mountains of Virginia last Wednesday. A group of us spent 4 1/2 hours on the BlueRidge Mountain and Appalachian Mountain trails: sitting two periods of zazen, sharing a quiet period of hiking and enjoying discussions about Dharma and practice throughout the remaining hike and on the drive to and from our homes.
Rev. Wakoh Shannon Hickey offering a talk on the topic of Buddhism and Sexuality – Thursday October 15, 2015
She asks that you bring your questions so that we may have an engaging dialogue on the subject of Buddhism’s historical attitudes towards sexuality and gender.
Wakoh received Shukke Tokudo (lay ordination) from Sojun Mel Weitsman at Berkeley Zen Center in 1987. She was ordained a priest of Sōtō Zen in 2003 by Rev. Gengo Akiba, former bishop (Sokan) of Sōtō Zen in North America, and abbot of Zenshuji Sōtō Zen Mission in Los Angeles. Wakoh completed her Head Monk training (Shuso Hossen-shiki) at Kojin-an n 2010. Rev. Wakoh is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Notre Dame of Maryland University (NDMU); and the Buddhist Campus Minister for Johns Hopkins University. She is also a Certified Leader of InterPlay®, a group creative practice involving improvisational movement, story-telling, music-making, and stillness.