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 Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen

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George
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PostSubject: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:22 pm

I haven't seen a reference yet on the forum to Rev. Seikai's recent contribution to Sweeping Zen, offering his insider's view of some of the history of Rev. Jiyu-Kennett, Shasta Abbey, and the OBC. I hesitate to re-post it without specific permission, but it is easily found by your search engine.
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mstrathern
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:39 pm

The article was posted here with some comments in 'The Reading Corner' section, or directly at:
http://obcconnect.forumotion.net/t699-seikai-luebke-s-essay-on-sweepingzencom-why-are-kennett-s-disciples-so-reclusive
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George
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PostSubject: Oops.   Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:13 pm

Thanks.
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Jcbaran

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:16 pm

I frequently re-post material from sweepingzen - always giving them credit of course. No problem in reposting such material.
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Carol

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:05 am

I wonder if RM Seikai's rather candid account of Jiyu-Kennet's personality might have been influenced by his earlier participation on OBCC. As some of you may remember, he expressed great distress at having his master discussed here in a way he considered disrespectful. But he did read what was said here, and maybe it got him thinking about his relationship to her and her relationship with the monks and the monks' relationship to the laity, particularly married lay people.

Seikai's observations about the isolation of the monks from the world was important. He is probably correct. Perhaps the OBC monks shouldn't even try to counsel lay people if their purpose is to remove themselves from the "world." Certainly Koshin takes this goal of isolation from the world to an extreme, and it's questionable whether it's ethical for him to inflict his views on susceptible lay people.
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Isan
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Sun Apr 21, 2013 11:38 am

Carol wrote:
I wonder if RM Seikai's rather candid account of Jiyu-Kennet's personality might have been influenced by his earlier participation on OBCC. As some of you may remember, he expressed great distress at having his master discussed here in a way he considered disrespectful. But he did read what was said here, and maybe it got him thinking about his relationship to her and her relationship with the monks and the monks' relationship to the laity, particularly married lay people.

Carol, you're right. Seikai's willingness to participate here was an important step, and his thought kept evolving as he and others from OBCC collaborated to talk with the OBC directly (see the Skype calls thread). As a result he has been able to get past the OBC's taboo of questioning and arrive at a much more humane understanding of Jiyu Kennett. He's still a monk - his world didn't come crashing down - and he's much more open minded as a result.
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Carol

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:42 am

Isan, I see a lot of discussion of the need for confidentiality of these calls and someone's offer to summarize, but I can't find any summary of the content of these calls. Is there anything about the substance of the Skype calls on OBCC? If so, can you direct me there? Thank you!
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Isan
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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:02 pm

Carol wrote:
Isan, I see a lot of discussion of the need for confidentiality of these calls and someone's offer to summarize, but I can't find any summary of the content of these calls. Is there anything about the substance of the Skype calls on OBCC? If so, can you direct me there? Thank you!

Sorry it's taken a while to get back to you. If memory serves everything about those calls is contained in that one thread. In retrospect the significance of those calls was mostly the contact itself. To my knowledge it was the first time that a group of former members of the OBC got together with current members and had a face to face discussion. There was some talk about Amalia, Eko, Koshin and the separation of NCBP, but only superficially. There was no willingness on the part of the OBC participants to openly explore these topics and that's why there were only a few calls. Still, seeds were sown and I believe that over time it helped Seikai and also Craig (Berthold) Olson.

Was there something in particular that you wondered about?


Last edited by Isan on Wed Apr 24, 2013 8:57 am; edited 1 time in total
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Carol

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Wed Apr 24, 2013 1:10 am

Thank you, Isan. Yes, the topics I am most interested in are the ones you mentioned that no one wants to explore -- Amalia, Eko, the separation of Koshin, etc. I am glad the discussions helped Sekai and Rev. Berthold. But these topics seem forever closed to those of us lay people most concerned. I did everything I could to bring some resolution to these issues and i suppose it is good training in letting go, but that doesn't mean any of these issues are resolved. Most particularly, why did Koshin leave the OBC? Did it have something to do with Amalia? No one on this Forum (or anyone else I have talked with) seem particularly interested in Koshin or why he left, but I would like to know. Amalia has dropped the whole thing, which is good, but I am not at peace!
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Thu Apr 25, 2013 2:57 pm

Carol My friend
Amelia... letting go... people here not interested.I would not like you to think that I did not care for you or your family.
I must also apologise for disappearing I have been so ridiculously busy.
The one thing this website and the state of zen at present reminds me that we can not escape the Buddhas teaching. For me the Buddhas teaching was about life how to understand it and of course live it. Live it in a relevant spiritual way,also some guidelines for when we get lost ,which as we are humans we do.

A smile lasts a second, a deep relationship might bring love, togetherness, and meaning, but it will at some point come to an end.Our meditation shows us that a thought has no substance it may come and go,even a spiritual awakening may be sudden, maybe a deep life changing experience that changes ones whole being and outlook but it will pass too.As humans interested in the spiritual or zen we play games and tricks and try to defy the Buddhas teaching,try to find something outside of his truth,a utopian centre or temple that somehow is outside of impermanence.A good temple will show us the way ,but this has to be lived in normal daily life,the rules of the temple can bind one to a stupid system that one is led to believe is something other than what it is.. a system, a teacher can pretend to have something special or pretend to be someone special, or let others think that he or she is actually different from who he or she is, even when everything falls to dust before our eyes.In fact the truth of impermanence is very often the last thing that is taught,because the lack of permanence of our precious egos is not what anyone wants to teach or hear. So often what is taught is someone perspective of their own illusionary self,or their view of life. some people take them selves away from life and want other people to be committed to their view of isolation and discipline.However the real demands of zazen, our practice is to be who one really is,to live the right way,to live our best with truth and wisdom whilst our feet are walking dusty roads
The secret of life is to live it,in zen I believe we should live it the right way that of course include tenderness,compassion and concern for everyone,that within a wheel of impermanence certainly includes you.

From the very edge of a crumbling cliff in Cornwall.

These spring flowers
Seen
For the very first time

Carol..love you
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Carol

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Thu Apr 25, 2013 4:16 pm

Michael, we have missed you! Thank you for the heart-felt thoughts. I hope all is well with your partner and with your mother. I wish you and your family well.

I didn't mean a criticism or self-pity when I mentioned that most people aren't interested in what goes on at North Cascades. The fact is that Koshin runs a very private, secretive operation there and not many people on this Forum have had much if any experience with the place. Almost no one has had recent experience with Koshin since he broke away from the OBC. We just have very little information on what goes on there, so there isn't much discussion here. It's kind of a black hole.

It's interesting to think how we are all quick to criticize the OBC for lack of introspection about its problems. But I always looked at the OBC as the responsible outfit that would keep Koshin under control. Now even that is missing!

Anyway, Michael, Best wishes to you. I hope you stay with the Forum now that you're back!
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Rev. Seikai's essay in Sweeping Zen   Thu Apr 25, 2013 5:24 pm

I think there are 2 issues, a scary person who has held power over you, and is the true way dependent on any conditions.
Scary people have to be seen for who are what they are,I sort of remember Koshin and I remember Daiji telling me of some strange scenario regarding Koshin's wife at time Daiji left in 76,and I believe Koshin had a big experience when he realised he 'could be wrong about kennett'(oh dear) that is all I know and don't really want to know anymore,however bearing that in mind I would not be surprised if his lectures or talks are based around the lotus blossom era and book as he tries to recapture what was,but I dont know I have not seen him for 40 years!
I understand Shasta feels the need to distant themselves now from Koshin, it is a great shame they did not feel they could distant themselves before,but sometimes one is too close to trying to hold it together one does not see the whole picture,towing party lines can be very blind as we have all seen.
I think a lot of people on here especially those that do not really comment,have actually been helped by past disturbance of the behaviour of kennett and Shasta,and have quietly worked out the real and relevant issues of zazen and quietly get on with it and allow themselves to be influenced by their own zazen. This to me is good zen practice.
The second issue is the true way dependent on any conditions,to me is far more interesting,relevant and demanding of our personal insight what do you think?
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