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 Myozen Delport

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jamesiford

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PostSubject: Myozen Delport   Fri Jul 20, 2012 4:03 pm

First topic message reminder :

For those who trace their connections
back to the beginnings of the Zen Mission Society and the foundation of Shasta
Abbey I’m pleased as punch to say I’ve been in touch with Myozen Delport, for a
while Miyagawa.

Myozen was one of Kennett Roshi’s first students, studying with her at
Umpukuji. She ordained and was common in those years, not long after received
Dharma transmission on the 14th of July, 1969. She and another ordained
disciple came withher when the roshi came to California.

Following her marriage to Arnold, Myozen and her husband moved to his native
Canada. As was Kennett Roshi’s want, there were various false statements made about
her in the years that followed. Myozen has had a son, now grown, and following
a divorce has remarried.

What did happen is that she connected with an old friend, a Soto priest Kodo
Ito, and re-ordained with him. As Kennett Roshi never registered her
transmission there were no difficulties in her “starting over.” She travels to
Japan regularly. In 2004 Myozen received Dharma
transmission from Ito Roshi, which is registered in Japan.

This relationship continues to this day.


She is doing well.


And I am so glad.


I cannot say how important Myozen was to me at the beginning of my Zen life.
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chisanmichaelhughes



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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:25 am

I was slightly curious this morning about how popular books on zen are,and wanted to see if I could google sales, of zen mind beginners mind. I could not find the sales,and so tried the Wild white goose no luck either however I ended up on the berkley priory book site and they say JK's book

The Wild, White Goose, Volumes I and II, the diaries of her years in Japan;
This is where it gets a bit naughty on one hand the disclaimer says it is not factual. yet the priory says it is a diary.
The confusing thing is why was it published if it is fictional what actually would the teaching be? what would be most honest would be for the bookstore to say
Wild White Goose a fictional tale of life in a zen temple.

As an aside Jan van de Wetering account of life at Daitoku-ji manages to throw some real flavor and humor at his endeavours with Gary Snyder and Walter Nowick, and certainly some flavor into Walter and some of the sad carry ons before Walter left his own place Maine.

I liked the flavor of Jan's picture of Daitoku-ji the teacher's main concern was that Jan answered the koan given to him all good stuff.

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chisanmichaelhughes



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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:01 pm

Myozen i have re read the post you just sent to me. ithese snippets of sayings from Dogen and many others are so inspiring and always seem to point where I would like to be and where I am.

Tamara and I went to the mermaid centre to day she had a couple of cysts which were drained and 1 small something was found so we are back next week so a sample can be taken
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Anne



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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:29 pm

:-) Hi Glorfindel! Nice to see you on the site.

I hope Freya, Astrid, momma-girlfriend and you are all doing well.

And may your creativity flow freely!... (-:

:-) Hi Josh!

It would be interesting to know where JK's take on zuishins came from (difficulty with the language?/personal sense of loyalty and connection?/etc). I've tried googling around for more information on "zuishin" but didn't find much...

Suzuki Roshi said nothing averse in this transcript of a talk on Sandokai...
Quote :
... And what you learn is-maybe from books or from the other teachers, so that is why we have teacher-master and teacher. Teacher could be various great teacher. Master is one, and we-master's disciple is-we call deshi, "disciple." And for the-for the students, whether he is his disciple or not, the student like this, like Zen Center. Some of you are-is my, you know, disciple. Some of you are not my disciple. Then, those who are not my disciple is called zuishin. Zuishin is "follower," or-and he may stay, you know, pretty long time under some teacher. Sometime longer than the period he stay with his master.

My, my tea [incomplete word-"teacher"?]-when I was thirty-two, my teacher passed away-my master passed away. So after that I studied, you know, under [Ian] Kishizawa-roshi. So most of the understanding, you know, I have is Kishizawa-roshi's understanding. But-but my master is-Gyokujun So-on is my master ...
http://www.shunryusuzuki.com/suzuki/index.cgi/700530Va180.html?seemore=y

According to the biography Ceaseless Effort: The Life of Dainin Katagiri by Andrea Martin, Katagiri Roshi had honshi (root teacher) Kaigai Daicho Hayashi Roshi, with whom he trained for eight months in a small temple in the village of Kitada. Dainin entered Eiheiji in 1947, where he had onshi (practice teacher) Rendo Eko Hashimoto Roshi. In 1948 Dainin received dharma-transmission from Hayashi Roshi. In 1950 he performed zuise at Eiheiji, and completed three years of formal monastic training; and in 1952 he performed zuise at Sojiji, completing the final Sotoshu requirement for full priest ordination. Later he attended Komazawa University in Tokyo, for five years living in the home of Bokusho Kakudo Yokoi Roshi (an associate professor of Buddhist Studies), whom he regarded as his third teacher. Roshis Hayashi and Hashimoto were still alive at this time.
One needs a Google account to see this document: Ceaseless Effort (this is one big url!) (-:

:-) Hi Henry!

...And I'd hoped all you'd have to type is No...it looks like I'm in trouble! (-:

:-) Hi Myozen!

No worries at all about your statement on zuishin and thank you for having answered my query. I am not trying to set your statement in opposition to Kennett Roshi or vice versa. How she perceived and felt about the prospect of being a zuishin obviously determined later choices and consequences.

I hope that all is going well at Daiko-ji and with your "serious" winter preparations. (-:
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myozen



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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:54 pm

Chisan,
We hope that the initial test results provided at least a small measure of reassurance for you and Tamara - we will be thinking of you as the next test approaches. Perry: "our thoughts and prayers will be with you. Gassho."

Your mention of Janwillem van de Wetering brought back pleasant memories of us reading The Empty Mirror in Hazelton before heading to Japan ourselves. Two years ago or so I requested our local bookstore to order Two Shores of Zen: An American Monk's Japan by Jiryu Mark Rutschman-Byler. He called this book "an incomplete but final draft for the wider Sangha". The candour in his telling of his experiences is very moving and conducive to honest/heartfelt dialogue. It now makes me think of you in Zuio-ji.

One of the instructions I received from Kennett Roshi at Unpuku-ji was to record my dreams - still am, many journals later (a pain when packing to move - so much for the traveling monk with just a kesa bunko!) I was charmed when I first learned that Keizan kept such a journal, and think perhaps this was the reason for her instruction to do so? Dogen's mention of his own dreams are also recorded in the Eihei Koroku. Yesterday morning I woke up with just the word "Simhanada" which I jotted down until I had time to look at it further. "Simhanada" means "Lion's Roar", "a term designating authoritative or powerful teaching", the teachings of the Buddha. So, I looked in the Eihei Koroku translation by Okumura and Leighton to check what Dogen had said about the Lion's Roar and found it in one of his dharma hall lectures ... it seemed to answer the discussions here about transmission, zuishin, recognition, etc. which was quite to the point!

"Benevolent people, do you want to know the principle for practicing together with the World-Honored One? The sound of a lion's roar is known by a lion."


Anne,
No worries! :-) Your questions prompt me to dig around in Kennett Roshi's letters and the journals from that period to verify events, etc. It is like a kind of archaeology and also at times like a trip into the rabbit hole (I mean this in a playful sense: trick mirrors, labyrinths, colourful characters...)!

The studded tires went on the vehicle yesterday - interesting doing this in a strong wind blowing off the snow on the mountains. There were a few other Haisla words in use.

Gassho,
Myozen
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chisanmichaelhughes



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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 24, 2012 3:26 pm

Thank you and Perry too for your kind words,I think I do feel reassured that the hospital were positive,we head back next week,there was a waiting room full of women waiting for ultra sonic scans and mammory grams 9 not sure if that is the right word) Tamara and I both left feeling very grateful for our health. Ikko Roshi always used to say to me Please Chisan look after your health. it is a very nice greeting or parting blessing.

Benevolent people, do you want to know the principle for practicing
together with the World-Honored One? The sound of a lion's roar is
known by a lion."
What a great saying you should do more translation Myozen it is such a gift to be able to read and write 2 languages I struggle sometimes with English as I get letters and numbers muddled up,I have just emailed someone about a parcel delivery a and wrote castle it is because there is a c in parcel my brain does it's own thing sometimes.

I agree our dreams can tune in to some greater depth I think, Tamara dreamt she was pregnant a few months ago and she was 2 weeks not loads,our certainly my initial feeling,I remembered the story of the zen monk were one of great shock I remembered the story of the zen monk who stayed calm during an earthquake and stayed where he was rather than run for it he just had a glass of water..when calm was restored he casually mentioned his calmness(as you do) to the other monks. One of the other monks remarked that was not water it was soy sauce!!
Have a nice day
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mstrathern
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:18 pm

Quote :
"Benevolent people, do you want to know the principle for practicing together with the World-Honored One? The sound of a lion's roar is known by a lion."

Yes, but some mistake the purr of a kitten for the roar of the lion and go around shouting loudly in the mistaken belief that they are roaring like a lion. Then they tell everyone they are the roaring lion. From all the postings that Josh has put up it sadly seems to be quite prevalent with those who have given up on the truth and want to impose their will on others because they are 'Great Zen Masters (Teachers, Gurus, Saints, etc)'. They are just feeding their egos and all too often leading others into further delusion. Rinzai would have said to them "Your plot has not yet been hoed." None of them are Rinzai's 'True Man of no Status', nor do they hanker after becoming one. They only want fame and gain, frequently particularly fame.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Thu Oct 25, 2012 12:59 am

The subtleties of ego teach the subtleties of ego
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breljo

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:14 am

Jiddu Krishnamurti said this:

“All authority of any kind, especially in the field of thought and understanding, is the most destructive, evil thing. Leaders destroy the followers and followers destroy the leaders. You have to be your own teacher and your own disciple. You have to question everything that man has accepted as valuable, as necessary.” — J. Krishnamurti, Freedom from the Known

He did clarify elsewhere that by no means was he in any way implying anarchy of any kind and any closer familiarity with his writings will attest to that.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:23 am

Nice quote
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:24 am

To continue my theme of my copy written zen quotes

The blooming obvious stares you in the face
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mstrathern
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:03 am

Chisan - Love it!
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:08 am

Continuing my much in demand theme of popular 12th century zen quotes
the following is from Shi zu who spent all his life going higher up
mountains and deeper in forests,he reached Satori after living in a
minimal hut designed by Chinese master Ko Zan



Hiding up in the mountains in my hut I can look down on everybody else
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Anne

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:18 am

:-) Is this something like the "minimal hut" you mean?...


...And this a relative of the "Shi Zu" (possible alternative spelling "Shih Tzu") you have in mind?...


(The family is indeed of small stature and might never get to look down on anyone except from up a mountain.)
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:07 pm

Later dear later,I'm only trying to enlighten the masses
You could at least of found a picture of his Satori
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Kozan
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:00 pm

Nice hut! It is simple, affordable, easy to build, and nicely proportioned.

I like the hut's arched-top window door. It has good passive solar potential if the window-door faces south (in the northern hemisphere), although this orientation greatly reduces the efficiency of roof-mounted solar PV and water heating panels. This could be overcome by orienting the door to the southeast, for morning winter sun (which is when you most need it anyway). And then mounting solar panels on the southwest facing roof shed (which ony reduces efficiency by 3% compared to a due south orientation).

Also, its open floor plan is cozy, yet endlessly adaptable to a wide range of different activities and functions. Perhaps its best feature, however, is that it encourages proper meditation posture (even for sleeping), with its 3 ft. x 4 ft. floor, and its 4.5 ft. ridge height! ;-)
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 8:45 pm

The actual moment the sartori of Shitz Yu (another alternative spelling form old Madderin) is caught in this rare footage. Seldom shown except to the true initiate at the end of his/her first arduous 10 min meditation initiation (a snip at $5k, apply by pm to me with a non-returnable $500 as a sign of good faith)
www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RlFKkXUOCc
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:40 pm

Chisan,
Could I add a quote for possible consideration for your collection?

From Phra Farang: An English Monk in Thailand -
"One senior monk that I am especially fond of came out with a small pearl of wisdom that I've never forgotten. Nine of us were sitting in the back of a pick-up waiting to be taken somewhere or other, when a chatty new monk, trying to be friendly, said something to me in Thai which I didn't understand at all. He turned to the other monks and said, 'Mai ruu reiuang,' 'He doesn't know what's going on.'
The senior monk then said to him, 'Mai ruu reiuang sabbai' a Thai idiom meaning something like, 'When you don't know what's going on, you are content.' For me that has really proven the case."


Anne,
The monk who was ordained here in Terrace, Hodo, went to visit family in Montreal a few months after his ordination. He telephoned one day from Montreal saying that he had visited the animal shelter where, I believe, a relative was employed. He was quite excited since he had met a Shih tzu there in need of a home and somehow the little dog had made a connection with him. When we went to pick him up at the airport a week later, there was the Shih tzu with him. He named it "Buster" but after we noticed that Buster would do gassho when guests arrive (the Daiko-ji zendo used to be in Hodo's basement since my place is about the size of the aforementioned hut), Hodo renamed him "Lama Norbu".

With winter here now, our favourite television commercial is back - Canadian Police Chase - youtube.com/watch?v=QsxV49pmnL8.
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Kozan
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:05 pm

Myozen, I love the Canadian Police Chase commercial!

For those who might be interested, here's the direct link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsxV49pmnL8
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myozen

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:16 pm

Kozan,

Glad you enjoyed it! :-)

Gassho.
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Henry

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:17 am

Hi Anne,
My reference to you being valiant by going to the edge of credulity and beyond...yes, I can see how this would feel less than supportive. But many of us who spent a lot of time with Rev. Kennett, left Shasta, and moved on with our lives, have limited patience, I think, for the questions that hope for answers that will give an understandable reason for her acts of cruelty. What can I say, Anne----been there done that.....for years and years. Far too many years. Enough years so I feel a bit ashamed I didn't have the gumption to leave earlier. And even when I did, the quest to find answers that would mitigate Rev. Kennett's responsibility for her own behavior continued. Eventually enough was enough. Who was I covering for and why? I just don't have the desire to cover for her behavior or search for justifications that I don't believe exist.

Myozen, I believe, (and tell me if I'm wrong, Myozen) may still be struggling to extricate herself from old beliefs (some might say brainwashing) that prevent her from fully leaving the past behind and fully being able to live with gratitude and certainty that she is where she should be in the present. Reading her posts, it seems like the past, especially her years with Kennett are still a weight that she has not fully dropped. Questions like the ones you posed to her, felt to me like having the potential to increase rather than decrease self doubt, to make her feel she might have been able to stay at Shasta if only she saw that Rev. Kennett was really just looking out for her best interests. All this tightens binds that need to be cut. I don't think that was your intention, but those were the sort of questions I had to just drop at a certain point and just trust my own judgment as to what was and is best for me. My experience told me that Rev. Kennett did many things I or others just did not need to put up with and to hell with the justifications, mitigations, and minimizations (new word me thinks) that held so many of us back for too long. Perhaps I am projecting my own experience onto Myozen too much, but I am responding to these posts from what I see, and hopefully it is correct. If others see it differently, I have been on OBCC long enough to fully expect backlash.

Myozen,
Please let me know if I'm being insufferably paternalistic and condescending. If what I said above is true, I hope you can weed out the remnants any "what ifs." You wrote:

The closure I am working towards is also a making of peace with the feeling that a calling was lost due to Kennett Roshi's intervention in our lives. Some mornings I still wake up with an empty feeling of loss - most, or all, people experience this in their lives at some or other point, so one is not alone in this. Being a monk and studying in Japan meant the personal practice as well as the rituals for the parish, the whole works. The memorials and funerals never felt like a hindrance to personal practice, but rather an enrichment through the interrelationships with the community. So, I tell myself that it is "just attachment" and I remind myself now in hindsight that there were other options at the time. Life here is not unpleasant, of course - there is family life, community life. I also believe that if things evolved in a "healthy" manner at Shasta Abbey I would have been as happy there with my dharma family.


We are all getting older to the point that the length of our lives become more and more uncertain with each passing year, and God knows they pass quicker and quicker. I hope being here on this site will help you fully work through that sense of loss. You have lost nothing. Nothing. What is a monastery? What monastery breeds no regrets in its monks that a life outside may have been better? How many monks remain from when you were there? One, two? Are they the only ones who get to live without regrets? Why should that be? Reading all you have on OBC Connect of Shasta and so many other Buddhist centers, are they really all that much more insightful or enlightened than even this motley crew here? Is your present life worthy of your full investment, with no sense of loss for what might have been? What can you do to make that so? These, I believe, are much more productive questions for you to spend your time with than the ones Anne posed (sorry Anne; just my opinion). Hoping to mitigate Rev. Kennett's responsibility for her actions by minutely dissecting her motives leads exactly where? Life is too short, and it's getting shorter and shorter. What is the best way to live those remaining years? Wondering if life would have been better as a monk, or waking up fully to the life that is before you. It sounds like there is much good in that life, much to be grateful for and much to enjoy.

Life here is not unpleasant, of course - there is family life, community life. I also believe that if things evolved in a "healthy" manner at Shasta Abbey I would have been as happy there with my dharma family.



But things did not develop in a healthy manner. And they could not have, I believe, because Rev. Kennett's unresolved psychological issues did not allow her the understanding to lead the community in a healthy direction. Look at your experience at Shasta. Look at mine. Ask others here about theirs. Where was knowledge to help others in a healthy manner displayed in our situations? It was often not displayed because Rev. Kennett simply didn't have to breadth of understanding of human nature to help us as we needed help. In fact, she often stood in the way of us manifesting our own innate knowledge of what was best for ourselves.. We are not alone in this. Let the Shasta folks have the life they've created and let us allow ourselves to have ours.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:38 am

I agree Henry that for me JK did not teach liberation, freedom, and being a spiritual adult. She taught how to be contained, how to give up personal responsibility and put her opinions there in place.It is not dropping self it is allowing one to be controlled. And you are right the result of years of control,never ends well, it is ends without being free, demonstrated with the next in line releasing his misconceptions,regrets and delusive thinking whilst he plays with himself on the phone.
Regarding Myozen I feel she respects alot of the past and does not want to speak too negatively about the aspects she does not..my opinion not hers
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 11:55 am

:-) I'm very pleased I got the hut right.

Mark, thank you for supplying what I could not...and for details of the old Madderin (old Madderin spelling of "Mandarin"?) spelling, to which I should have paid more attention before watching.

Loved the commercial, Myozen, and the story of Lama Norbu. (-:

:-) Henry, many thanks for answering. I do hold Rev. Kennett responsible for her behaviour; nothing I asked was intended to suggest the actions mentioned were "good to do". There can be much difference between intent and effect-due-to-lack-of-understanding. I think that Rev. Kennett had significant misunderstanding about Myozen (hopefully not in every aspect throughout Myozen's time with her), and that it was best (indeed inevitable in the end) that Myozen leave, just as I found it necessary to end my postulancy at Throssel Hole in 1975. (Conversely, sucky effects do not necessarily mean sucky intent, especially when dealing with someone who has a certain degree of liberative insight and applied training.) My impression has been that Myozen is over any kind of belief that there must have been something wrong with her if she could not appreciate and agree with the misunderstandings and adversarial modus operandi. Even in writing to you here, I wish I could think of a more tactful way of expressing my meaning but alas my time and intelligence are too limited, for which I offer apology as I have no wish to be offensive.

"Limited patience", if I have have read that as you mean it, does sound rather like Rev. Kennett: I'm not trying to be cheeky or 'get my own back' here. I see in others' stories of Rev. Kennett, and what I know of her long-held genuine-but-mistaken belief in the ubiquitous necessity of living as an unpartnered monk for certain degrees of realisation, factors that while particular to her in some aspects are not necessarily unique to her in all aspects, for I have witnessed some in my own past. Excluding recognition of these where appropriate in oneself, or in ones past, will hamper ones development or ones understanding of other people. When someone is considered a troublemaker or forgetful (for example), they may also regularly be blamed for things that aren't their doing simply because others are so used to things being their doing, and then look no further; so even more gets piled in front of the "troublemaker's" or demented person's door, becoming yet more of a cause or 'reason' to doubt them next time: I noted this many times when working in mental health services for over-65s. Correctly or mistakenly, my impression of some posts on this thread has been somewhat similar, along with an impression of a kind of 'ostracism' of Rev. Kennett. Again, this does not sound dissimilar to some of her behaviour. Alas, present limits to my tact-knowhow (not unwillingness to use tact, as I have got over thinking that is a good way to help others!) may mean this statement appears to some people as insulting, which is certainly not my intention. In examining aspects of her behaviour, I perceive also a more general relevance from which I do not wish to exclude myself.

I think you did well to get out of Shasta, Henry, and completely agree with your assessment...
Quote :
Rev. Kennett's unresolved psychological issues did not allow her the understanding to lead the community in a healthy direction. Look at your experience at Shasta. Look at mine. Ask others here about theirs. Where was knowledge to help others in a healthy manner displayed in our situations? It was often not displayed because Rev. Kennett simply didn't have to breadth of understanding of human nature to help us as we needed help. In fact, she often stood in the way of us manifesting our own innate knowledge of what was best for ourselves.
(-:
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 2:17 pm

Jumping back to some earlier discussions, I wanted to revisit insights about Kennett's personality style - from the Enneagram literature. She was rarely a healthy version of the Eight type -- maybe during the first few years a bit, but mostly she was a classic example of what we could call the average or unhealthy versions of this ego structure / pattern. Much of this clearly applies to Kennett and certainly to many other gurus and corporate bosses I have intersected with over the years. Some of these might sound extreme, but the mind-set is quite accurate and again helps provide insight into Kennett and her behavior and the consequences.

AVERAGE and UNHEALTHY EIGHTS:


Eights - proud, egocentric, imposing their will and vision on everything, arrogantly ordering other around as if chattel, not seeing people as equals or respecting their needs or rights or opinions, creating master-slave relationships. Feel they must get their way, becoming confrontational, belligerent, bullying, and defiant, creating and relishing adversarial relationships. They make everything into a test of will and do not back down - ever. Use threats and fear of reprisals to extort compliance from others, to keep them off balance and feeling powerless. Love to make others feel powerless. Others feel insecure and oppressed - and that's the way the Eight boss wants it. It is their way or the highway. They are in total control - end of story. Never any self-doubt or retreat. Unjust treatment makes people resent and hate bullying Eights. Bully is the operative word here without any guilt or self-doubt and the feeling of others do not matter.

Eights want to hold on to their power and prevail no matter what the cost: become completely ruthless, violent, immoral, and hardhearted, defying guilt, fear and any other human feelings. Dictatorial, tyrannical, espousing the totalitarian, "might makes right" law of the jungle philosophy. Begin to develop delusional ideas about themselves (megalomania), feeling omnipotent, invincible, and invulnerable; becoming increasingly reckless, overextending themselves and their resources. Finally, if in danger, they may vengefully and brutally destroy everything that has not conformed to their will.

Unhealthy Eights have dominated their environment so completely that they have made enemies of nearly everyone around them. When they get stressed out, they go into the Enneagram Five mode and become paranoid about their continued survival since their many enemies may well have joined together against them (at least, that is their fear and fantasy - they are all coming together to harm me). They finally realize how insecure and threatened they really are. From being fearless, an Eight in stress begins to fear and distrust everyone.

(Childhood: Ambivalently oriented to the mother or mother figure. The most important element in their development is their successful testing of wills against their mothers. As they assert themselves against the mother / feminine, Eights grow up with enormous will power and strong egos with an unquestioned belief in themselves and confidence in their ability to always get their way.)

Eights want to assert themselves, to prove themselves and their abilities, to be respected, to dominate the environment, to get their way, to be feared by others, to fight for their survival, to have absolute power, to be invulnerable. (Kennett demonstrated this many times - in relation to other Buddhist teachers, to other Zen teachers in Japan - denigrating other teachers - saying that they hadn't had kenshos like she did - trying to show them that she was a real master, and so on).

Their basic fear is submitting to others -- ever. (But they want everyone else to submit to them, completely). Eights make terrible disciples or followers. They are the boss. Key Defense Mechanisms - Repression, displacement, denial. Eights feel: I am fighting for my own survival, and others would certainly take advantage of me if I let them. (Don't trust anyone.)

Characteristic Temptation of the Eights: To think that they are completely self-sufficient. Average to unhealthy Eights increasingly act solely on self-interest, attempting to be in no one else's power or control. They want to be utterly self-sufficient and independent of others so they they will need no one - ever - although ironically, they want to become so powerful that everyone else will be dependent on them.

Characteristic Vice: LUST. Although the lust for power is typical of Eights, sexual lust is a significant part of the picture since sex and aggression are mixed in their attitudes and behavior. In its broadest sense, lust is the desire to utterly possess and control another, to be God-like in total power over others. (I have talked about Kennett and other gurus who see their disciples as dolls in their doll house, as objects that they utterly own and control.) So with this dynamic, Eight leaders demand total, unquestioned loyalty and obedience, adoration. This is true in all situations where an Eight is the leader / boss -- in business and corporations, politics and government, academia, religious organizations and groups, and in families. (Kennett's behavior is an example of an unhealthy Eight - it had little to do with her role as a Zen teacher -- that was a thin veneer, an overlay - the clear dynamic (or you could say 90% of the dynamic) was her unevolved, unenlightened ego structure and pattern in full bloom, under stress, lacking any self-awareness or feed-back loops since she had no friends and no one to give her any honest responses to her behavior, no checks and balances).

Eight Structural Pattern: The keynote is expansiveness. The psyche of Eights is VOLCANIC as if a massive force were constantly moving outward to dominate the environment. (Volcanic is actually a very good way to describe Kennett when she was angry or felt that anyone had disagreed with her - she became enraged and volcanic, managing the situation through pure emotional and verbal force and fear - I saw this HUNDREDS of times - not an exaggeration -- and it got progressively worse over the years I was there).

Their primary force is AGGRESSION (mixed with sexual elements) that is directed towards the external world by the Eight's formidably strong ego. Eights generally experience little internal conflict or doubt or self-analysis since the structure of their psyches allows them to discharge their aggression outwardly rather than to repress them or turn them against themselves. However, while conflicts rarely exist inside Eights, interpersonal conflicts frequently arise when Eights pit themselves against others in confrontations and displays of will, ego, or other forms of dominance (including sexual). Such a conflict may produce momentary feelings of anxiety and fear, although Eights will deny and defy them. Thus the overall pattern of the EIGHT is of relentless expansion into the environment including other people to dominate it completely. (Once Eights begin to violate others - emotionally, verbally, politically, physically), only escalating inhumanity and barbarism will be the result and ultimately they will surely topple.

By acting unjustly, EIGHTS inevitably curtail their freedom and ability to act. Ironically, as they deteriorate, they are not self-sufficient or self-reliant but become even more dependent on others (their followers, devotees, servants, subjects) to do their bidding. Far from being the masters of their worlds, they live like prisoners, in constant fear of retaliation and retribution.

So, Kennett's behavior towards Myozen, towards Mark, towards me, and the many others who left or challenged her in any way, was mostly or entirely based on her personality structure. No zen in it, no skillful means, no hidden Dharma teachings. Actually not so complicated really. She was dominated by her ego wiring. So the Zen "master" who supposedly was beyond self and whose ego was said to vanish in a flash of radiant insight, well the clear evidence is that her actions were examples of ego in full flower. Divine, enlightened?... in her dreams, in zen fantasies, but not in real life.






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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 2:45 pm

It is not a problem not being enlightened,not experiencing Kensho,having personal problems,having Phobias

It is not a problem being Human

As human beings the guidance we want is
How to be more human,how to be more spiritual, how to be more loving,
How to be more kind.

We want to learn these things as we are human with,faults and problems

The best people to learn these things from is someone who is a real person,strong enough to be themselves with all their faults and limitations,because these types of people have learnt to live with:

Themselves,
And as Buddhist we learn this the Buddhist way, the way of loving kindness
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:49 pm

Henry,
Your post has me sitting here in deep contemplation of your comments, which hit the "nerve" right on target. I very much appreciate the insights you share and your candid approach.

Really, the sense of loss of my Shasta Abbey dharma family has now been addressed through connecting with everyone again on this forum. So happy with this! Living here in Terrace, I am fortunate to be part of a very large Haisla extended family through marriage to Perry and learning about this culture has been quite an experience. We have been joking about collaborating on a book titled Zen and the Art of Kglateeh (oolican oil). My son is part Japanese, so our immediate household/family has turned into a combination of customs and of speaking Afrikaans, Japanese, Haisla, sometimes all in the same sentence, with English. This leads to a lot of amusing situations. There are a few Buddhists in the larger region and we meet when in either town. We are kept busy helping more elderly friends and with other community events. Having said all this, one would really wonder why the sense of loss - has Myozen's cheese slipped off her cracker? (I am probably going to regret writing that!)

As you say, we are getting older and I have been feeling the shortening of days of this particular life and find that I am doing more assessing now of how things have developed/evolved. I find that I am beginning to discard that which feels redundant to the remainder of the journey. At the same time I also feel a tremendous sense of "richness" in life, especially in autumn when the life of trees seems to retreat to the roots.

The sense of a calling missed - I cannot think of another way of putting it - has its origins in my early childhood in the 1940s when I already knew I wanted to go to Japan. At the time Japan was still in the process of recovering from the war. At 9 years of age I had already put together a notebook about Japan - my parents were supportive of this interest and had bought me a typewriter, which my mother taught me how to use. The focus of my teenage years was on studying and translating Japanese. This was during the Apartheid years in South Africa, so it was not an easy undertaking. When I was 17 my parents agreed to a Japanese family becoming my guardians/guarantors. Now that I am a parent I realize just how much they loved me by allowing me to continue with my dream, even if it meant traveling so far away (by the standards then).

Becoming a monk in Japan meant learning how to be of support to the community, learning all the customs and rituals involved - the monk is also counselor/advocate in times of crisis. I very much enjoyed studying the Siddham required, learning how to keep the ancestral records of the parish/temple, and being involved in village life. In short, I loved the vocation of a monk, and was happy to continue with this calling in California with my dharma family there - and spending time translating in the library in Shasta Abbey.

I do not believe that monks are particularly more insightful than other people - and I really feel such respect for all the insight and wisdom shared on this forum. A spiritual life, or enlightenment, does not depend upon being part of any particular institute/institution/belief system. It is the heart of the individual that is of the essence.

Henry, with the sorting I am doing in thinking your comments over, I find that I am thinking of the "vocation" of being a monk, like being a nurse or accountant, or whatever (this being Canada, hockey player?) Upon reflection on your post, it occurs to me that the thing I have to let go of is missing being a monk specifically in Japan, with its wider social/communal/traditional implications as a "Buddhist" country, and I realize this sense of loss is due to all the effort and focus since early childhood - and that there are aspects of all this studying/experience now unutilized. (Sorry, I do not know how to express this without sounding proud of achievements of some kind, which is not the feeling or intent). I believe the essence of the matter of life here has moved somewhat beyond the "Kennett Roshi problem" now, thanks to everyone's comments and support on the forum. It is as Josh also has indicated, it was time to move on then, and it is time to move on now with my life here without compromises - which Perry reminds me I have been trying through the years.

In the sense of absolute truth there is no loss, nor is there gain, I remind myself.

Thanks, Henry. :-)
(That is the only emoticon I have mastered - this I believe is gassho _/\_?)


Chisan,
Thank you - you have made an accurate evaluation of the situation - there is so much more that is untold, but it is interwoven with so many other elements/factors. I keep running into the ethics involved in the necessary discussion of others in analyzing/coming to terms with issues affecting oneself, and with the past can be altered in our own memories.

A very beautiful reminder of loving-kindess in your post. I am relatively sure it was Dogen who stated (though I cannot recall when or where it was recorded) - "Even if my bones were ground to powder, I would still be grateful to the Buddhas and Patriarchs." The same applies to the experience of being monk for me.


Anne,
I am glad you enjoyed hearing about Lama Norbu. He was not with Hodo for very long since Hodo died suddenly of a heart attack - but we did share a lot of fun with Lama Norbu. Lama Norbu is reported doing well in his new home.


Josh,
In light of the Enneagram - in relation to the complications beginning with Unpuku-ji, it had seemed that Kennett Roshi's fear of a student maintaining friendships with monks or teachers outside of her immediate sphere of influence had to do with her fear of being exposed or betrayed, since she was so dependent upon admiration, obedience and adherence to her views on the part of her students. I believe that Kennett Roshi was aware of her own lack of experience or true "mastery" and that all the manipulations and interference in others' lives were defensive measures.

It always strikes me as being so sad and such a waste of phenomenal potential, given all the opportunities and conditions present for great benefit to all beings.
One of the things I appreciated about her was that she also loved animals. In Haino she was very upset when she saw a bull tied to a post by a very short chain attached to the ring in its nose.

...

I have often wondered what became of Lance Gyokusen Merritt? He gave me a Catholic rosary and later an army fatigue jacket which my son eventually inherited.

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sat Oct 27, 2012 11:29 pm

Myozen thank you you have shown me something that I was only very dimly aware of. One of the things that unknowingly I held against JK was that she, and my reaction to her, became a barrier to my vocation. something which I had been deeply committed to and valued dearly. Now I can see this more clearly I can begin to get beyond both and back to real life.

Anne I agree with you that intent is key in many ways but I fear that whilst I think that JK probably started out with fairly good intent I feel it became increasingly sullied as time went on. She clearly had some initial insight in Japan which she wanted to pass on. But as time passed it faded and her situation, fears and insecurities led her into increasingly outlandish country, the seeds of which can be seen in her behaviour even before she left Japan. It seems to be a common theme amongst such people that their behaviour is held up as skilful means, whilst in truth it is just selfishness and bullying. Human intent is never completely unsullied but it is the underlying base that counts and sadly in JK's case I believe it became corrupted and ended up leading many of us astray.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sun Oct 28, 2012 12:36 am

myozen wrote:


I have often wondered what became of Lance Gyokusen Merritt? He gave me a Catholic rosary and later an army fatigue jacket which my son eventually inherited.

Gassho,
Myozen

Myozen, I had completely forgotten what Lance's ordination name (Gyokusen) was. Lance drifted away not long after the summer of 1970 as I recall. However, in the summer of 1971 or 72, he visited Shasta Abbey, and told me that he had married and was working as a professional fire-fighter. It was good to see him again. Unlike many of us, he spent time in the US Army, fighting in Vietnam--which was where he developed an interest in Buddhism.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sun Oct 28, 2012 2:31 am

Myozen, I hope you're up on this latest advisory--if it applies to you--about the 7.7 magnitude earthquake in your area, and the tsunami warning!

http://www.google.org/publicalerts/alert?aid=e03a6e895721fff1&hl=en&gl=US&source=web

Edited to add: Fortunately, the tsunami advisory was later cancelled.


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sun Oct 28, 2012 5:14 am

Hopefully that is Myozen Fourth Kensho they are picking up
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sun Oct 28, 2012 3:20 pm

Mark,
Thank you so very much. I am so moved by your post and your sharing of experience. It is such a blessing to finally be able to identify the "ills" and then continue on from there. For me it is still akin to a miracle being able to communicate with you and our dharma family after the isolation of so many years...


Kozan,
Wonderful to hear news of Lance and that he has been doing well.

Although we do occasionally feel slight tremors here in Terrace, this earthquake was a bit of a surprise for everyone since it was so strong and long in duration. We noticed the plants were swaying but it was only when the rosaries hanging from a peg on the bookshelf were banging against it - and momentary vertigo - that we realized it was an earthquake. I quickly looked at the cat, but Cookies was sleeping contentedly through it - so much for the gift of the ability to predict by such a relaxed cat! Perry had not felt the earth move beneath his feet like that before and I suggested he sit down, but he was supporting the bookshelf which was moving by more than one inch. We knew it meant a big one somewhere - Vancouver? Haida Gwaii? Probably out of habit since the tremors were lasting so long, I started reciting the Shosaimyo kichijo darani - not much else you can do with everything swaying around you! After the tremors stopped, telephone service was still interrupted for a while so we could not check if everyone was safe - eventually my son managed to call, asking if it reminded me of Japan. Perry's mother called from Prince Rupert (a harbour city) informing us they were stuck in the stadium where family members had been watching basketball - the highway between Terrace and Prince Rupert had been closed and the tsunami warning was in effect. Fortunately the immediate area around the epicenter is not a densely populated area.


Chisan,
After everything calmed down, we were laughing recalling your story of the monk who drank soy sauce.

A report from Kitamaat Village stated that a chief had just finished a speech about that totem pole which had been returned from Sweden, and the Kitlope traditional dancers were just entering, when the earthquake struck. So another story to add to the legend of the pole.

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Sun Oct 28, 2012 3:47 pm

Myozen interesting what your comments were of being a priest in society in Japan. I can certainly understand your feelings.
I think the Japanese can categorize their religious lives quite well.
Priests that train and then go and run a temple,priests that train and then go and help in some other way , both raise families.
Then a few monks would stay in temples and further their practice,some might stay a long time,some a life time.
I think one of my main criticisms of JK is that she actually disturbed the natural callings of many people,and Eko certainly would have continued to put off many more. this is indeed very regrettable and comes about because personal views were not allowed to disperse which in turn does not allow the true way to manifest.

However we are naturally who we are, we are naturally our original nature,I believe we can never hide who we are,nor really run from the responsibilities of who we are. I also believe that regardless of appearance ,personal standing,age,nationality,we should take our vocation vows seriously and without exception regardless of anything be there for everyone...all sentient beings

Happy that you are all safe
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 7:49 am

Anne and Myozen,

I've read your responses and would very much like to respond. i was able to use my wife's laptop on Friday, but then proceeded to spill a glass of water on her keyboard on Sunday. The computer is already 10 months old so I'm not sure why Cyndi was upset. Actually after a brief and very modest freak out, she was very understanding. Now that it's been turned upside down to dry, it's fine as of Monday morning. More good news: My computer has found (Recognized) my keyboard (for now), so I'm typing on it now. I hope to respond next weekend, technological and coordination uncertainties allowing.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 9:04 am

:-) Hi Myozen!

I am very glad that your sense of losing your Shasta Abbey dharma family has been/is being addressed through connecting with folk on this forum. Do you also have some community role as monk-in-charge at Daiko-ji?...
http://canadianbuddhist.wordpress.com/2009/08/07/daiko-ji-soto-zen-centre/

Are there ways in which you could have a soupçon (at least) of what you have missed in not "being a monk specifically in Japan"? Are there relevant Japanese forums?! Not quite the same, I know. But I wonder if some small connection with a community there (beside your precious link with your teacher) would help, if available?...though I realise that "if available" is another thing. Just an idea for the pot... (-:

:-) Hi Mark!

Thank you for your thoughtful and heartfelt comments, which also express the impression/belief of some other forum-contributors concerning JK's latter intentions.

JK also wrote that kensho becomes only a beautiful memory without continuing training (I think her words were something like that). In my experience that's partly true, partly not true (depending on what one means)... After the first liberative insight into the emptiness of 'self' imputed upon skandhas, the insight does not fade in the sense that illusoryself-view does not again become solid; the peace and wonderment may certainly fade, as new questions, imperatives, etc arise, and other obscurations continue. I had a rather unpleasant taste of this, not 'discovering' Buddhism and the path of training for four years after my own initial insight. All that time I desperately wanted to find the way ahead but did not know where to look. Four awful years. I had my own self-directed antipathy to contend with, which is never a comfortable bed-fellow!

Even when I began training in the Noble Eightfold Path, there were many sticking-points and misunderstandings. Even after 'liberation' from subtle illusoryself-view-and-grasping, there were many sticking-points and misunderstandings. In fact, I would say that the worst incidents (admittedly only a handful) in my efforts to 'help' others arose after liberation: understanding sucked, timing sucked, tactics sucked, intention didn't. I learned something from each of these unpleasant incidents; but these events arose during a five-year period...so I don't know if there would have been more in that time had I been in a formal 'teaching' position. Even after inner developments undid obscurations that could have kept me stuck with such responses, I still misevaluated situations, and sometimes with disastrous results. Despite this sorry state of affairs, I can say that at no point did I intentionally give up on training! But some on the receiving end might have thought that hard to believe. That I did not give up was not due to some onerous self-sacrifice in which I knew I could have been so much happier as a spiritual 'couch-potato' (though I daresay we all might like to be able to keep our feet up on the mantelpiece;-) but because internal conflicts kept pressing me on and internal dishonesty would have felt like real death.

I would be interested to know if anyone on this forum who has trained even a little past their first liberative insight into the emptiness of 'self' imputed upon skandhas has ever actually experienced intentionally stopping (deliberately abandoning) training for a period since that insight, and turning from the liberative insights that they had? I would be interested to know how that felt, how long they did it for, and why/if they returned to training.

My own belief is that JK knew, intended, and applied her efforts to the way of training; but in attempting to teach others (and I am a beneficiary of this) she made some great mistakes, including in attempting to assert her authority...and, as you say, apparently deeming dour and iron-hand tactics as "skillful means" even in 'peacetime'*. My impression from Zen is Eternal Life/Selling Water by the River is that her belief in the usefulness of these tactics must have existed to some degree in Japan, but I don't know if it preceded her time there (e.g from D T Suzuki's writing and that of others).* She knew her own route, but there was much that she did not recognise or understand pertaining to others.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts. (-:

* For some time I have been thinking of starting a thread on some aspects of the Mahayana Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra, but have not yet finished drafting my first post. However, of possible relevance to the above... In chapter 19, arya-bodhisattva King Senyo (purportedly a former life of the Buddha) killed some brahmins who spoke negatively of enlightenment and of Mahayana vaipulya sutras. In chapter 22, Kasyapa asks the Buddha about this, and the Buddha replies that he did it out of love and that the brahmin benefitted from the action. I wonder in what ways sutric passages like this, where the thunder-cloud of an injurious act has the silver lining of awakening, have intellectually affected perceptions (and their consequences) about "skillful means" in Mahayana circles.

My apologies that I don't have time to make a more orderly presentation of this:
According to these links, King Senyo kills some brahmins...
http://www.loonwatch.com/tag/buddhist-violence/
http://nichirenscoffeehouse.net/Ryuei/RAR28.html
According to this link, King Senyo kills himself, but the discussion between the Buddha and Kasyapa in chapter 22 suggests to me that unfortunately Kosho Yamamoto's translation may be wrong in chapter 19...
http://www.shabkar.org/download/pdf/Mahaparinirvana_Sutra_Yamamoto_Page_2007.pdf

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

:-) I look forward to hearing from you, Henry. All the best. (-:


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:21 am

Anne

You could start a Thread:
True Confessions: Why I Abandoned My Practice

Maybe in the In Theory and Practice. I'd sign on for a few comments.

PS. Keyboards permitting
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:29 am

Henry wrote:
Anne

You could start a Thread:
True Confessions: Why I Abandoned My Practice

Maybe in the In Theory and Practice. I'd sign on for a few comments.

PS. Keyboards permitting

Glad to see you've got your keyboard working. By the way, the standard response to water on electronics - as in Cyndy's laptop - is to get out a hair dryer/blower set to medium heat and have at it until dry.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:32 am

Isan

A little late on the advice, aren't you? Also-- looking forward to your True Confessions on Anne's new thread.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 1:51 pm

Henry wrote:
You could start a Thread:
True Confessions: Why I Abandoned My Practice
:-) A spanking idea, Henry!

I'm a bit concerned that the full title --

TRUE CONFESSIONS: Why I Abandoned Training
(and not merely formal seated-meditation and Buddhist associations)
After Liberative Insight Into The Emptiness Of 'Self' Imputed Upon The Skandhas
-- might seem too elitist to some folk, and offputtingly clumsy and long...

But if you're still game sunny give me time to prepare suitably invasive questions for starters (only joking...but I'll need to prepare a starting-post).

NB: Rigorous hairsplitting interrogation may follow comments, to determine if what you recount matches my standard for "abandoning training", and is not simply exploration, confusion, disorientation, self-disparagement, and such like.

N very B: No crying-off into "Wouldn't it be better if we discussed my future?" ;-)


Have we a deal? beermugs
...Gosh, and I was hoping for a quiet weekend...
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 3:23 pm

Before a deal is sealed I need to know what NB stands for. Also I really like your title. In fact your title could be your first post.

PS what does crying off mean
PPS When are you going to start speaking English?
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 4:26 pm

Myozen i meant to ask you a while back about Yuho Yokoi
I never met him, I know he was a translator was he a professsor? Did he teach translation,or did he just translate?
I somehow wonder if he went to Eiheiji

I am curious as he sent me 2 of his books i do not know anything about him, but would like to know something
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 6:20 pm

Henry wrote:


PPS When are you going to start speaking English?
The thing is, errm, it's those of us in the U.S. who don't actually "speak English"

We make similar sounds, but it's kind of a chimp-English, I think.

Sorry. I had to point this out.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:01 pm

Lise
Have you seen Rise of the Planet oaf the Apes? Moral of the story: Today's chimp may be tomorrow's supervisor.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Mon Oct 29, 2012 11:44 pm

Josh,
We have been watching news reports regarding Hurricane Sandy and the situation in New York - I hope you are safe and that all is well with you.


Chisan,
Thank you for your thoughtful comments about monks' lives in Japan. All I know is that Yuho Yokoi was professor of English at Aichi Gakuin University in Nagoya. My teacher's son graduated from this university and when my teacher gave me the Shobogenzo translation, his son said, "Oh, that is by my English sensei!" which was nice to hear. He most likely trained at Eihei-ji as well?


Anne and Henry,
I have been enjoying your posts, and would like to respond tomorrow.

We had a very close call today with a vehicle speeding in the wrong lane against a red light. A young mother and her toddler were just stepping onto the road as well. It certainly brought everything into "enhanced" focus. We were very relieved to arrive home to the wonderful welcome from our pets.

The snow shovel also made its first appearance for the season. Walking in the ice and snow today was an exercise in mindfulness - kinhin all over town!
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:22 am

With regards to the English language, as Lise points out:

Several of my Irish cousins visited me here, in northern California, early last week. I once again became aware that I speak--American! ;-)


Last edited by Kozan on Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:42 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:34 am

Myozen, as always, it is so good to have reconnected--and now, to hear how life is going for you and Perry! I must admit, that my favorite time of year is autumn--and the slide into winter!

(Of course, that's easy for me to say, now that I'm living on the northern California coast!!)
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:15 am

i remember Henry saying a while back Mission Accomplished? i don't know about that but I have to say this particular post has made me laugh a lot I always think of a friend of mine who practiced at Daitoku-ji would always not only tell me how tough it was but was always so ready to laugh and would tell me that it was so important for the practice to be full of belly laughs every time I think of him I always smile.in fact Zuoiji was always laughing( usually at me) So this post has been full of laughter for me,i was not sure at first if Myozen would get the jokes and laugh but in she joins showing for me her great training credentials. Mission accomplish who cares..I have enjoyed this post
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:41 am

I come here for the smiles too Smile

Henry, I didn't see "The Rise of the Apes" -- the previews looked like the monkeys were going to be abused or other sad things would happen and I knew I'd probably ditch the movie after 5 minutes.

Agree with you re: today's chimp, tomorrow's supervisor. Only it happened quicker than that in my office; upper mgmt are mostly like orangutans only not as well-mannered or perceptive.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:19 pm

Henry,
Up here in the Northwest we have sasquatches ...


Anne,
We have been involved in the community in some aspects akin to being a parish monk in Japan - these are just, of course, ordinary human (cannot think of how to express this - I am not thinking of sasquatches here) interactions of supporting and helping each other. Daiko-ji has always been a family kind of relationship with outings, etc. together other than the scheduled zazen meetings. In Kitamaat Village we were perhaps more active in the community - the animal/wildlife rescue activities, and Perry was a volunteer firefighter there (many intense stories). I was involved at the school during the social studies unit relating to Japan - I would take various items to "show-and-tell" and get the children engaged in making a simple Japanese dish for lunch. The calligraphy class went over well - children and black ink ... I also used to make dolls and doll clothes for the children in afternoon sewing bees.

The energy is a little different - in Japan there was always the intimate connection with not only the living but the dead of the community through all the customs/beliefs involved with the ceremonies the monk was responsible for.

Several years ago Daiko-ji members got together to watch the Joseph Campbell documentary series The Power of Myth - he said that he would tell his students to "follow their bliss". "Monking" in that little mountainous village had been "following my bliss". That applies to monking anywhere, though.


Kozan,
Thank you - I really cannot say how wonderful it is to be reconnected. Perry also seems to be enjoying being part of the forum and sharing in this aspect of things. He was very pleased to hear that you liked the "Canadian Police Chase". Mentioning your Irish cousins reminded me that there is South African English; and then there is Canadian English, although I have not heard anyone say "eh" in any conversations I have been part of :-)


Chisan,
The humour in monastic life in Japan is such fun and as you comment, a huge part of the experience - things are pretty rigorous and that also brings everyone closer together in the camaraderie of shared sufferings! My first contact with the Rinzai monastery was on the funeral of my adoptive Japanese father. After the ceremony, while everyone was still talking together, I noticed a cat in the corridor outside the hondo so I slipped out and ran quietly on tiptoes down the corridor after the cat. Suddenly there was an imposing-looking monk in front of me and he said in a stern voice, "No running in the corridors!" and then he broke into a smile, bent over to scoop up the cat, which he handed to me. At first contact with this monastery I knew this was how I wanted to live my life, so I decided to join the zazenkai there. I telephoned and made an appointment to see the shika, and in preparation I bought a Buddhist dictionary which I read, and so was armed with a list of terminology, etc. when I turned up at a shika-ryo. A monk brought me a cup of tea on one of those long-stemmed red lacquer stands and some cookies. When the shoji slid aside, in came the monk I had encountered in the corridor that day - he was the shika. He listened and answered my questions and doubts very patiently, and then pointing at my list, he said "None of this will help you understand Buddhism. You can study the properties of sugar and identify what it is that makes sugar sweet, where it is harvested, and how it is processed. But you can only know the nature of sugar by putting it in your mouth and tasting it." At the time what was a powerful teaching that cleared so much away.

When I returned to the monastery to visit after I had been ordained, I was brought tea on the same stand again, but this time the stand was an old cracked one - when I told Kennett Roshi about this she said "well, you're a monk now", so it must have meant I was one of the "gang".

In the Zendo amidst the whacks of the keisaku there was also the same rather gentle humour. The monastery being Rinzai, we sat facing each other and not a wall. A dog walked in one day and stood there for the longest time studying one of the monks. There was a quiet ripple of loudr which gradually grew until everyone was falling apart laughing out laugh while the zendo monitor was banging on the edge of the tan, shouting for everyone to shut up.

Have you seen the Japanese film Fanshi Dansu ("Fancy Dance")? It is a 1989 spoof about sodo life - a punk rocker has to become a monk to inherit his father's temple as eldest son. After many misadventures he finds that he really wants to stay on in the monastery to train. I watched it with temple friends in Nagoya and brought a copy of the video for the Daiko-ji members to watch - no Japanese language skills required! The trailer is on dailymotion.com/video/x9l1S1_fanshi_dansu_shortfilms. Perhaps it will remind you of Zuio-ji, Chisan?

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:25 pm

I meant the monks were laughing out loud - did try to edit!
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:04 am

Myozen,

Seeing that you live in an especially vulnerable unstable area, of this great planet of ours, (either the Earth below sways, or you're doing Kinhin in town) , and then of course the Lava Beds not too far away, I can see how this could give you an extra dose of insight into the transient/illusory nature of life in general. Smile I am able to relate to so much of what you say, and really appreciate your way of always responding to everyone in such an intuitive personal and also humorous way. especially since you live a very busy life I expecially liked one of the sentences from another recent very intuitive posts of yours. ....Autumn, when the life of trees seems to retreat back to the roots..... Just like Kozan stated above, for me also, Autumn has always been my favorite time of year, and now that I am myself in those Autumn years of life, early Winter , it feels ever more appropriate to "do like the tree does" reflect and retreat back to the root

In Gassho

Brigitte

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 9:18 am

I am struggling with the link Myozen,can you help Anne please I would love to see the film
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 11:39 am

:-) Hi Henry!

"NB" for Nota Bene (or Notate Bene, if there's more than one of you) is dusty old Latin for "note well", and is fairly commonplace in dusty old England among the dustier old English. "Crying off" is ancient Greek for (roughly) excusing oneself from something, or withdrawing from something.

Henry wrote:
When are you going to start speaking English?
Only when really necessary, and if I can remember it! (-:

:-) Chisan, I think I probably had the same trouble as you with Myozen's link. Perhaps we are on the wrong side of the Pond.

I found several sites that might let you watch online for free if you're a member (always supposing they still have the video-link); and I think one can also download, e.g...
http://www.tracktvlinks.com/watch-fanshi-dansu-1989

Only a trailer exists on YouTube...


Here's another clip (with free advert)...
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x9l1s1_fanshi-dansu_shortfilms?search_algo=2
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 3:36 pm

Thanks Anne
I will have a look later
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 6:37 pm

Not enough on the clip to really get a flavor of the movie,However Myozen I liked the Shika saying
But you can only know the nature of sugar by putting it in your mouth and tasting it.
I have thought about the flavor of Japan's temples and for me it is a strong stillness which demands a strong stillness,and where ever I went in the temple or temple grounds the strong stillness demanded a strong stillness
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:21 pm

Happy Halloween!


Brigitte,
Thank you for your thoughtful post, it is always so good to hear from you. It is a beautiful autumn day here, with piles of golden maple leaves on the snow along the sidewalks. This morning it was minus 11 degrees Celcius with the wind chill, the coldest so far this season. It is this sparkling aspect of winter that I missed when I was back in South Africa. One year when we were driving home from Kitamaat Village - very carefully on the icy road - we saw a pack of wolves playing on the snow in the moonlight.

It is a seasonal treat gathering winter reading material and then settling in while the snow comes down quietly. It was rather moving reading that Dogen loved Eihei-ji in winter when it gradually becomes cocooned in snow.

This morning at the bookstore I was greeted by a glamorously spooky pirate lady and at the supermarket by a pregnant vampire lady. Starting tomorrow night there is a Jack o' Lantern Festival - each year Terrace residents take their carved pumpkins to Ferry Island and light the candles at dusk.

It is lovely to know that you and Kozan also enjoy the reflective-ness of the season.



Chisan,

Beautiful - that stillness of the Japanese temples is something I sometimes miss. The strong stillness "sinks" into the marrow.

My apologies for a hasty post last night, complete with typos! I had meant to say there was a quiet ripple of laughter which gradually grew until everyone was falling apart laughing out loud.

Perhaps the dog was wondering whether the monk has the Buddha Nature?

I looked at the link again - it is the 2.25 minute Daie Film trailer which opens with a moving scene of monks doing takuhatsu in the snow. A hyphen was left out in the link (instead of an underscore) which should be dailymotion.com/video/x9l1S1_fanshi-dansu_shortfilms.

The trailer also does not really convey the flavour of the film, which though a parody/comedy has some thoughtful moments. In one scene, while the young Japanese monks are struggling with their concerns over girlfriends left behind, dealing with new disciplines, etc. there is a gaijin monk who says, "Zen is the universe." At this point Hodo groaned!


Anne,
Thank you for trying with the link I mistyped - sorry for the trouble :-) Many bows! I have not been able to find a site where the entire film can be watched on line.

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:36 pm

Chisan and Anne,

Perhaps you have seen it already, but the Japanese film Zen (Dogen) can be watched on YouTube in a subtitled version (123.30 minutes)

The Life of Zen Master Dogen
www.youtube.com/watch?v=TinmRC2BS00

Gassho,
Myozen
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