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 Myozen Delport

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gnorwell
glorfindel
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myozen
Carol
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jamesiford
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jamesiford

jamesiford


Posts : 21
Join date : 2010-08-01
Age : 74
Location : Long Beach, California

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PostSubject: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty7/20/2012, 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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http://www.bluecliffzensangha.com

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myozen




Posts : 101
Join date : 2012-07-25

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/7/2012, 3:52 pm

Brigitte,
I enjoyed your account of crossing the suspension bridge at Nanaimo. At the Indian village up here, Gitwinksihlkw - which is surrounded by lava beds in the Nass Valley - there is an old suspension bridge which used to be the only access by foot to and from the community until motor vehicle access road was completed in 1995. Next time we find ourselves there, we will perhaps try to cross it and let you know how we fared?


Anne,
At the time I read the WWG draft sections Kennett Roshi sent me, the impression was that she had composed these as a form of castigation since I had requested to see the sections prior to publication - these sections did not bear much truth to events or to myself. In the letter I sent to her in response I made a statement to this effect, and also stated that I wished to believe - this also meant "wished to be able to" - that she had done this for the purpose of teaching (since the alternative would be that she was deliberately being destructive). The tenor of these statements were similar in vein to the accusations at Unpuku-ji already. One such incident took place when Kennett Roshi was gradually separating me from some activities in Unpuku-ji - putting me in with the "Japanese contingency" - my Japanese dharma brother and I were sometimes left to our own devices, so we did zazen together, went on takuhatsu together, attempting to maintain a sodo life - with the result that Kennett Roshi accused me of misleading him. I was soundly reprimanded for helping an elderly lady weed the cemetery on a very hot day - she pointed out that there was a memorial there for fallen Japanese WW2 soldiers (members of the parish.) Be that as it may, in my experience Kennett Roshi was not a person with whom one can reason once she had made up her mind about something. I had transgressed by requesting to see the sections, and that was that.

Anne, I do not like confrontation and discord, so it is difficult to write candidly about this without the matter of disharmony in the sangha presenting itself. I feel that I should re-state that I am grateful to her for ordaining me in the first place - I feel she was sincere in her acceptance of me as her student and there were also positive qualities in the experiences with her which have remained with me after all these years.

In 1971-1972 Arnold and I were working in Vancouver to save money for fees to return to Shasta Abbey and were ready to do so when Kennett Roshi informed us first that the Abbey was full, and then that married couples were no longer allowed. If she had not informed us of this, we would have returned since that was the reason for the employment in Vancouver. I do not think this was necessarily aimed at us personally, since it seems she had decided that all Shasta Abbey members were henceforth to be celibate like her. We subsequently moved up north to the Hazelton area, where I continued doing translations for Kennett Roshi (I was translating another book by Koho Zenji and also her personal correspondence). The correspondence exchanged between us was congenial at the time until the matter of the WWG draft sections.

After having written to Kennett Roshi requesting a formal letter of release in 1976 - which she received but chose not to acknowledge - I no longer regarded myself as a member of the Zen Mission Society. Kennett Roshi and Daizui had written informing us that they were terminating all correspondence with us, which I felt confirmed a termination of relationship. Since I was registered with Soto Headquarters these matters were discussed when I arrived back in Japan and the procedures were followed to register the change of teachers. Kennett Roshi's teacher Suigan Yogo had affixed his seal of authority to the transfer document. Kennett Roshi found out about the transfer from her friend who had written a rather emotional letter to her with regard to a slightly different aspect (may I please be excused from elaborating here since this is about someone else's matters?) Somehow Kennett Roshi completely focused on my change of teachers and wrote the very inventive letter to Soto Headquarters. All these letters ended up with me for translation since Kennett Roshi did not seem to have someone at Shasta Abbey to do so at that point. It seems that Kennett Roshi chose to assume that I had been dishonest by not disclosing that I was her disciple and wrote to me that I had "added more lies to my collection" (I do not know what the other pre-existing lies are) and that I had caused damage thereby. In reality, there had been no fuss or "commotion" (her word). Changing teachers officially meant that I was no longer on her register and she would not be able to control matters relating to my training. Kennett Roshi did not want me to associate with friends and other monks, so I think it must have been quite difficult for her to contemplate this change of teachers. The "commotion" that she claimed my change of teachers caused existed only in her mind. Everything had been peaceful, so it is rather ironic - to the contrary of her statement - that it was her letter intended for Soto Headquarters that caused an upheaval in the sense of our decision to return to lay life just to distance ourselves from the whole matter.

Anne, I very much appreciate your comments regarding expectations in relation to teachers. I no not recall ever expecting Kennett Roshi to be perfect, or to have all the answers, or to enlighten me - but I did anticipate that she would understand to some degree what was going on inside me since she was preceding me on the path. I believe that as students we can reasonable expect our teacher to be an authentic guide who engages us with integrity, and who has our well-being at heart. When I turned up at Unpuku-ji I had been training in Karate for about 6 years and had found that although discipline was strict, there was warm guidance. This was the case with training both in South Africa and Japan. The same applied to the Rinzai monastery where my first impressions of Zen teaching and monastic practice were formed. I also recall my calligraphy teacher - whose work had been chosed for Nitten Japan Fine Arts Exhibition on more than one occasion - as a young mother whose baby was present in the classroom. These teachers all had a quiet confidence and strength, as well as humility, in common. It is perhaps unfair to make such comparisons, and I feel somewhat contrite doing so, but this is meant as an explanation of my experience with other teachers. Teachers have tremendous power and are entrusted with their students' lives, commitment, and also their faith in the teachers' methods.

One must of course examine one's own contributions to situations, and we were young - but I do not believe any of us deliberately set out to vex Kennett Roshi. All this did end up providing very intense practice through examination ...


Chisan,
Your words "Sodos I have been to in Japan were very difficult and tough, certainly pushed me to the limits ... but it was never cold hearted" describe my own experience as well. I really agree when you say one "should be attracted to the great way and not to someone's personal message", and that "the communal practice of meditation, the strength and joint discipline of a temple is something else all together ... done together led from the top." A teacher continues to practice and to learn from peers as well as students.


Josh,
Upon just re-reading the letter Kennett Roshi sent to her friend (which he had passed on to me since he could not read the English), the nature of the misinformation and the bending of facts/events is mind-boggling. Though I really do not want this thought to arise, this letter is vindictive and revengeful - this was the impression when I first read it in 1979.

I recall Kennett Roshi talking to Mokurai and myself about the precepts in a teaching session at Unpuku-ji. She stated that causing a schism in the sangha was one of the grave "sins". Unfortunately, in effect this has happened - but here we are, working this out together.


Isan,
Thank you for your comment regarding the lineage - this transmission is something treasured in my life. Yes, we all remember Kennett Roshi differently, and I am now for the first time discussing and examining it, working towards closure and harmonious integration of all the elements/aspects. For this, I am grateful to the forum and everyone so patient with this!

It is Thanksgiving weekend here and all shops are decorated with autumn leaves and pumpkins - when I looked out the window this morning the road was barely visible in the thick fog.

Gassho,
Myozen
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chisanmichaelhughes




Posts : 1640
Join date : 2010-11-17

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/7/2012, 4:54 pm

very thoughtfully written Myozen

I would like to add that I very often write not what I really mean..especially when communicating with Anne the sentence

The arrival of the cherry blossoms in spring always reminds me that the universe is whole and perfection itself, and misappropriate behaviour is only seen by the dualistic minds of the unenlightened

is not to be taken as gospel it is meant as a great get out and excuse you know 'All is one I can do what I want it does not matter' whereas the reality is all is one and everything matters.I do have a peculiar sense of humor

Myozen this being with Japanese contingecy whist in Unpuku-ji struck a surprising cord I was the only westerner where I was it was not a place for westerners it was too tough,some did start to arrive and I was told to mix in with them answer their questions help out, and i didn't, I did not want the role,it was fine the guest department looked after them in the normal way,they could directly experience what they had come for. Really though places like this are places for doing not explaning because the deeper explanations come from from oneself inresponse to the deeper real questions
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Anne




Posts : 408
Join date : 2010-07-28

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/8/2012, 12:07 pm

ZEN DYNASTY
[This is not exactly how I imagine life in a monastery — Author]
...Having received news from an old friend abroad, as night falls Nemo Roshi muses over her former disciple Ms Z who, it seems, has signed up with another teacher in that distant land…

frown ...I remember we first met in an abandoned doghouse where she was shacked up with four other runaways, when I was seeking shelter from rain…but SHE swears we met in the village hall at a charity fund-raising event organised with four other ladies…

…I remember her sneaking off temple grounds to the sweetshop every Saturday with two cronies, for a pack of M&Ms and a bottle of Coca-Cola…but
SHE swears she was visiting the Kanzeon grotto with a bag of birdseed and water for the birdbath, and that she had two witnesses doing kinhin…

...The lies, the lies!… Then she accused
ME, ye gods! Now she has gone on to create havoc at SotoShu HQ. What gets INTO people!?!...


Idea cheers ...Upsetting her cocoa, Nemo Roshi hits upon a strategy to warn others of the renegade in their midst, and to bring home to Ms Z the error of her ways…
and to SotoShu HQ she wrote:
Dear SotoShu, I hope your new sandals are no longer chafing and that you are over the worst with the antacids. Concerning Ms Z, I first met her in a well-subscribed cathouse run with four other escaped convicts, when I was seeking shelter from rain. As my disciple, every night two bouncers from the local casino would return her to the temple, smashed and smelling of curry…[Nemo Roshi extemporises creatively]… The night sky is aglow with stars and light-pollution, and I think I’m coming down with a cold…
...Lies?...I'll show you lies, missy!!...
drunken
:-) Myozen, I do not make light of your hardships, as the above sort of stuff is no trivial or laughing matter when one is going through it. Many thanks for clarifying various points for me.

Regrettably, perhaps your ‘alternative version' of reality, presented in response to Kennett Roshi’s draft in 1974, was among your perceived 'collection of lies'; and your supplying it might also have contributed to her misperception of you.

I don’t know if/that Kennett Roshi actually had the same deliberate ‘strategy’ as the fictitious Nemo Roshi; or if simply and sadly her perceptions of you and your activities, and why you were doing them, were (unbeknown to her) very distorted, and she muddled up Kodo Sawaki’s name with that of someone else; or if, also having distorted perceptions, she didn’t care much about straight presentation as long as she got her message across, to warn others and express disapproval, and perhaps chastise you.

I do not wish to isolate Kennett Roshi, as though she is the only person who has ever acted or been affected thus. As head of the Order and abbess at Shasta, whatever misunderstandings she had about people had a wider audience, and possibly effects, than the ruminations of a more ‘private person’. Unless she was going to disband the Order (and I am very glad that she did not), she had to run it with whatever understanding or views of modi operandi she had. When I read the stories of some people on OBCC, I am reminded (perhaps it is an inappropriate parallel) of stories of the fallen or wounded from a war, and I think — I certainly hope — that their contributions and yours to the public forum of OBCC can and will help toward a greater understanding of what would keep a greater ‘peace’.

I am very glad that you also have positive sustaining memories of your time and times with Kennett Roshi. Thank you again, Myozen, for having taken the time and trouble to write again of these matters. (-:
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maisie field




Posts : 77
Join date : 2012-08-13

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/8/2012, 12:21 pm

VOLUNTARY CODE OF PRACTICE-

I have read with great interest the contributions here.The memories and archives help with the larger picture of the progress of buddhist culture in the west.

I am interested in,and working on, a Voluntary Code of Practice for those teachers etc who offer retreats,temples,etc.

Is anyone else interested in working on this with me?

Or does anyone not understand what I am on about?



Ikuko(as maisie field)
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chisanmichaelhughes




Posts : 1640
Join date : 2010-11-17

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/8/2012, 1:04 pm

Ahh Nemo my friend, I am reminded of our relaxing time we spent together by the river in Kyoto, we enjoyed some vintage warm sake and talked of course about the genjo koan. A koan of how the normal is really the spiritual,and how our personal life and he way we live is walking in the Buddhas and patriarchs footsteps.
I remember my question to you that if one lives an 'inappropriate life' or give wrong teaching or practices a delusive path,can one instantly be released from karma and be a teacher of all beings,or does initial delusion color everything one touches,as you remained silent I respected this as zen silence rather than an ability to shout or demonstrate the answer.

Kyoto night time

Moon on water

Another sake Nemo
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Isan
Admin
Isan


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Location : California

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/8/2012, 2:29 pm

maisie field wrote:
I am interested in,and working on, a Voluntary Code of Practice for those teachers etc who offer retreats,temples,etc.

You might drop Kyogen a line. The website is at:

http://www.dharma-rain.org/

There's contact information there. I believe they are involved with The American Zen Teachers Association and have worked on the issue of ethics as pertains to teachers.

http://www.americanzenteachers.org/
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Jcbaran

Jcbaran


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Age : 72
Location : New York, NY

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/9/2012, 12:14 am

So much to talk about here. First, there is no OBJECTIVE pure vision. No buddha video camera that sees all perfectly that we can turn to for a replay of what happened back in the 70s. So all we have to rely on is our various recollections, memories. Which ware not perfect since all memories are just that. But collectively, from many sources, they can help us see things in a deeper, more human and multi-dimensional light. Insight is good, ignorance not so useful.

(I talked to someone the other day who had spent years at Shasta. He wanted nothing to do with this website or with his memories of Kennett. To him, it was all negative and crazy and lost in the rear view mirror. He didn't want to think about Kennett or Shasta or Zen. It was all long dead. That was his choice, his response.)

but what we are NOT relying upon - at least not with these conversations - on this website - is the ONE TRUE unquestioned version of what happened, just one story set by Kennett or her successors of who she was or what reality is / was. What we are not buying is the myth making that almost always happens around a spiritual leader - especially after they die - the creating of hagiographies, what is taking place now around Rev. Moon or what happened around L. Ron Hubbard of Scientology or Joseph Smith and the Mormons. Here, on this site, many stories, points of view, questions, insights, feelings. Good.

So I claim no perfect memory or interpretation about Kennett or Shasta. We all share our experiences and thoughts and as I have said, let them fly and try not to be too holy or spiritual or perfect, try not to censor yourself here - just share and see how things unfold, flow, interact, contradict, challenge, expand. We are all humans, so let's not try to pretend to be pure angels or glow in the dark Buddhas.

Isan, did my experiences with Sorting it Out color my memories or reflections. Maybe, somewhat, I hope so, more insights, more reflections, more ways to understand both the causes of suffering and the end to suffering. More understanding of how spiritual organizations sometimes work and then get screwed up and how gurus can be both charismatic and wacky and harmful all at the same time. Imagine that?

I think this website has given me more insight into Kennett, more stories shared, more people speaking out.

Everyone here is doing a kind of balancing act or analysis, aren't we? How much was positive, how much was negative? What percent -- it's almost a kind of numbers game. Like scales. I think of it like that in many situations in my life. I have many clients and projects that are not always easy and I frequently have these scales in my mind - the balance of things - 80% beneficial and 20% wacky. 70% worthwhile and 30% confused. and then sometimes it becomes 50-50 and then the scales can tip to being more negative, more painful, more problematic, more NOT GOOD. Then I either stay or go. Sometimes I resign. I quit. I walk away. Good for me.

When I left Shasta, the scales -- for me - had tipped into MORE NOT GOOD. More crazy, more abusive, more authoritarian. Everyone here had / had their own scales, their own experiences, their own reactions and responses. No objective buddha camera anywhere. That's why someone said this site is more good than bad - that's an example of the concept of a scale.

So some people here will see Kennett as 90% wonderful, 10% human. others the balance will be quite different. Some Kennett will be more like 50-50. Others, 10% positive, 90% negative... and the friend I talked to the other day, it was mostly 100% negative. Is there a right balance, a right way to see any of this?

Of course, some people won't like this numbers game. Fair enough. But for me the scales was and is a useful metaphor or image. When the scales tipped into the harmful with Kennett, bye- bye. Walk away. Find another teacher. I didn't need her permission to do this. Not her business. I hired her, i fired her. I came, I went, I moved on. Not her business. What she thinks of what I did, not my problem.

Back to some of these discussions, there is no doubt in my mind, based not only in my experiences but from the accounts of so many other people, that Kennett was a complex very human being, not some fully enlightened person, she had some insight (I see it now as minor, others might see it as major), she was master of nothing (that's my opinion), was self-blind, and had a significant, crippling amount of very human unresolved psychological issues, fears, doubts, anger, frustration and loneliness.

Some of what she did was basic Buddhist teaching and a great deal of her behavior came out of her denied personality and was at times, vengeful, vindictive, reactive and totally. totally unenlightened action. It was not dharma, but her unrecognized karma. It was not ineffable teaching. It had absolutely nothing to do with Zen. She might have thought that it did, but people think all kinds of untrue things. Believing your own nonsense does not make it true or make you wonderfully sincere. It makes you deeply confused and even harmful to others. No gold stars here, at least, not from me.

Now what was the balance. How much was valuable teaching and practice -- for YOU -- and how much was harmful unbeneficial? There is no objective answer. So you decide. I decide - based on our personal memories, interpretations, insights, life experience. We might not agree. We don't have to agree. The current monks of the OBC still see Kennett as an enlightened master, a living Buddha or something like that. They don't ask me how I see Kennett and the OBC. And frankly, i don't care how they view Kennett and their OBC and approach to Zen. Not my business.

And I think this extended conversation -- here - on this website -- is in fact Dharma in action, insight, speaking truth and exploring feeling.

Kennett is long dead. She is dust. Insight is now and learning from the past is important. At least I think so.

Thanks, Myozen for sharing. Please share more - and don't worry about upsetting anyone.

time to sleep. two major meetings tomorrow morning. working on a project around "the human face of big date" and a new Matt Damon film on environmental issues. onward.

lovely spring weather in nyc.

josh



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chisanmichaelhughes

chisanmichaelhughes


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/9/2012, 1:50 am

Good luck with your plan Ikuko I hope you you can contribute with other people.

I agree Josh I think there is a lot to learn from our previous years.I think from memory it was very difficult to speak out at the time,it seemed we left in dribs and drabs and it was hard to speak out when one would be dismissed and shouted down by ones former Sangha.I felt I was in a situation where I was either in or out.. I was out,but regrouping or steadying oneself and carrying on with practice is hard,as one has to work through the positive and negative,being careful not to come up with a self opinionated zen.

Personally I felt I was abused by kennett Roshi and I think others were as well,especially regarding leaving,one day we were alright the next we were not ..how can that be? I now strongly believe that abused people should not accept abuse..a simple statement but most people do accept other peoples abuse,domestic abuse can be made to feel normal,and a partner can be harmed for life because they have been negatively treated or controlled.

I feel abused as I was allowed no voice ,I was dismissed and had untruths written about me for the 'greater good' of someone elses religious views and their own feelings of self importance created by their own interpretation and verification of questionable mass experiences.

It is interesting in the UK the late Sir Jimmy Saviile is under investigation for have sex with minors over the last 40 years,people are speaking out and there are calls today to have his title taken away from him, he died a bit of a hero having done alot for charities,but more than likely he will be remembered as a nonce. We can not escape our previous actions, we can reflect do sange and move on.
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Anne

Anne


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/9/2012, 5:43 am

:-) CMH, for you...

Nemo wrote:
Ahh, Chisan-san, I kept my mouth shut lest I frighten the fish after my too-hasty gulping of saké-and-soda.

You know how I wish to help all beings cross the stream to the shore of small liberation, a-bit-bigger-than-small liberation, and a-bit-bigger-than-a-bit-bigger-than-small liberation... In fact it’s driving me bats that they haven’t all crossed yet. I feel so responsible.

Ahh, Chisan-san!… Wouldn’t they be happier if they crossed? cheers This is why I take out my shotgun and blast their backsides. But they run away screaming…I can’t understand it. Neutral

Chisan-san, some I had such hopes for…but it is as if suddenly they turn, and it’s like something out of Alien vs. Predator...
Myozen Delport - Page 7 Alien_11
If I don’t get huger and more devilish, who knows what havoc they will wreak? I have to put on my Mahakala-Yamantaka costume and frighten the living daylights out of them... Myozen Delport - Page 7 Images33 ...I am sure they are lost in a dark alley somewhere…but maybe it is I who am staring up my back passage… Myozen Delport - Page 7 Images34

Sometimes it is as if, in 'teaching', trying to understand and fix, I am forgetting to be a beginner... frown Sometimes I wish I could give it all up and escape to a cottage in the country...the seaside...off-planet. But if I don’t keep at this dratted teacher role, who will do it?...everyone with more caution has scarpered. I think all the airplanes will fall out of the sky if I don’t keep rooting for them. Sometimes I hardly dare sleep lest everything I have tried to build to serve as a beacon of light, an oasis in the desert, for future generations, comes tumbling down and sinks into the sand...

In lament

Nemo

PS How come I got landed with the bill for both the saké and the boat? Next time it's Dutch.
beermugs
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chisanmichaelhughes

chisanmichaelhughes


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/9/2012, 7:47 am

My dear friend Nemo.
your clear unattachment to material things is shown everytime you pick up the sake tab,it is nothing to do with you short term inability to stand up,You will be pleased to know that such generosity is a virtue and you are constantly spoken of in high places for showing spiritual virtue in worldly places,this shows real understanding of the genjo koan. After hours of contemplation and looking out at the maple leaves turning red,and taking comfort in the arrival 5 months early of spring in nyc my advice is:

Leave all the teaching to the Americans they want to do it
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Isan
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Isan


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/9/2012, 11:52 am

Jcbaran wrote:
First, there is no OBJECTIVE pure vision. No Buddha video camera that sees all perfectly that we can turn to for a replay of what happened back in the 70s. So all we have to rely on is our various recollections, memories. Which ware not perfect since all memories are just that. But collectively, from many sources, they can help us see things in a deeper, more human and multi-dimensional light. Insight is good, ignorance not so useful.

josh

Yes, if only there was a Buddha video camera we could refer back to :-) We have lots of cell phone cameras though, and if JK was around today sooner or later one of her tirades would wind up on Youtube. It would have been interesting to see her deal with that! Actually this site is a Buddha camera, throwing a lot of light on formerly hidden things.
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myozen

myozen


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/10/2012, 8:55 pm

Anne and Chisan,
Please convey my regards to Nemo Roshi :-)

In an earlier post you had mentioned wondering what Kennett Roshi's friend thought of it all. When Arnold and I went to say good-bye to him before leaving after the letter fiasco, he said that when he received the news that we were leaving, he suddenly experienced a sharp headache and thought that the gods were cursing him. When I went to visit him in the early 1990s together with my son, we had spoken of the "old days" and he expressed regret at having sent her that letter. I just went to dig out the bundle of letters again - in the reply Kennett Roshi sent him dated February 27th, 1979 she stated several untruths regarding the events/chronology surround our individual change of masters. Although we acted together, she absolved Arnold in the letter but continued a tirade against me, presenting me as an immoral person. She wrote to her friend, "It is unfortunate that you complied with Myozen's request to keep silent about her correspondence and her presence in Japan, since I could have told you that they were neither under my control nor guidance." Such a request did not happen - such dishonesty is not my style - and the thought occurs that if she admits that we were no longer under her guidance, why would we have had to report to her that we were going to Japan anyway? To this she added, "... I am sending copies of the letters you sent me to Myozen that she may see the grief and harm that she has caused by her deceit. More than this I am not capable of doing." However, she continues that "in order to prevent other people from being harmed" she is "laying the full particulars" of our case to the Bishop of Los Angeles and Soto Headquarters in Tokyo.

Regarding the matter of married couples, her version in this letter is that we had requested to get married, and that "since we had no adequate place for married people to live, also since neither of them would obey the rules of the temple, they were asked to leave." This version is a fabrication - Kennett Roshi performed our wedding ceremony and life continued in the Abbey, with me working in the library translating as usual. She then came up with the demand that Arnold pay fees for both of us, and the decision was made to go to Vancouver to work there to save money for the fees. I really do not know in which capacity we were not obeying "the rules of the temple".

One of the most potentially damaging pieces of misinformation she supplied was that I had abandoned my son, who was just a toddler at the time. I think I understand her line of thought here - a friend with only one syllable in his name different to that of Kodo Sawaki wrote to me at Shasta Abbey (I thought I had explained to her that this was obviously a different person) and she asked about the letter again several months later when we were in Hazelton already. Kodo Sawaki was such a prominent figure that it is surprising that she did not know he had died while she was still in Soji-ji. Kodo Sawaki was known as "Homeless Kodo" so she would have thought that it would be impossible for me to be his disciple accompanied by a toddler. So, that would mean I would have had to abandon the child. Kennett Roshi often assumed/surmised things and then would begin to believe them as fact. This I realized from translating so many of her "reporting" letters. Unfortunately, Kennett Roshi did not seem to consider the consequences or effects of her words and actions - she seemed focused only on what she chose to believe in her closed heart. It is very sad also for her. I hesitate to write this, (my apologies) but I am still wondering whether Kennett Roshi's mind was muddled or whether these were deliberate acts to basically destroy others who posed a challenge or threat in her estimation.

Kennett Roshi's friend was fond of my son when he was a toddler and bought him a very cool tricycle for his birthday. My father died while I was living in Seiden-ji and Kennett Roshi's friend arranged for a funeral for my father to coincide with the ceremony in South Africa, with him as the celebrant. He enjoyed showing off the "gaijin" monks and used to take Kennett Roshi, Mokurai, and myself to other temples, introducing us . When I last visited him and his family, his youngest daughter had married a monk who became the abbot of his temple, while he had retired to a rustic temple in Ise near the Grand Shrines. In the early morning the monkeys would descend from the mountain onto the temple kitchen roof with much clattering and they would then scrounge around for something to eat in the kitchen. He was beginning to have trouble with his legs but he still managed to scamper up the side of the mountain to show me a flower he had discovered of which he did not know the name. When he took me to visit his eldest daughter, whose husband is the abbot of a parish temple, he had the flower with him - by now shriveled and unrecognizable. When he produced it to show the monks present, his son-in-law said, "Oh, I know that flower - it is a 'bird-droppings-flower'". We were sitting on the floor around a table and two of the monks fell over laughing. We ended up going to the university botany department with one of the flowers to have it identified - it is still there pressed in my journal.

One must be careful, as Chisan states, to not come up with our own "self-opinionated" Zen - or a self-righteous version of events oneself. I am glad I kept that bundle of letters together with the journals since they also serve as a "reality check", or something similar, reminding me of my own naivety at the time.


Josh,
Your comments are very penetrating. Thank you. I have often questioned myself as to why I remained with Kennett Roshi after already noticing all these matters at Unpuku-ji, and when even her friend had privately told me that I did not have to leave Japan with her. One reason was that I had made a commitment to her as her student and the other being that I wanted to believe in the goodness I had seen in her at the beginning. Eventually, though - as you say - there was that final bit that tipped the scale.

Since memory is so imperfect I tend to refer back to the journals and letters when posting here. It is surprising how much becomes blurry. I found some dreams I recorded in September 1969 together with Kennett Roshi's interpretations. In one dream Mokurai, Tokusan, and myself stand in front of Kennett Roshi and she grabs a sword which she swings to cut our heads off, but I duck. (The Karate teacher in Nagoya had also been teaching a group of us iaido sword techniques, I hastily add here). Kennett Roshi interpreted this as meaning that I was rebellious and not willing to submit to her. In the next, Kennett Roshi gives me an umbrella, but when I try to use it, I find that it is broken. Her interpretation is that my ego was trying to sow mistrust and doubt. When I told her of a dream where I am wearing the habit of a Catholic nun, she told me that I was clinging to what appears pure/immaculate (I am translating from Afrikaans entries here) and holy. If I were attached to purity and holiness, how did I in less than two years suddenly transform into that immoral person in Toronto she describes me as in her letter?

Good luck with your projects, Josh.


Isan,
That this site "is a Buddha camera, throwing light on formerly hidden things" is very encouraging and reassuring - it also reveals the strength of a sangha.

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.

Thank you, again.

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/10/2012, 9:30 pm

Myozen - the specifics you share, the letters, the stories - are a very important part of the Kennett puzzle. She comes across as so domineering, mean and deeply confused. I think she was jealous and threatened by you. She clearly not only needed a few decades more training and meditation, but a very good and patient therapist, but first she needed to acknowledge her own pain and feelings -- and that never, ever happened. so it unfolded as it did.

I am so grateful I left Shasta and got out from under her shadow and influence. zMyozen, you were lucky also to be gone from her. Yes, we can say thanks for some of what we learned or some aspects of Dharma, but no one who left need feel guilty at all. And no matter precisely how we made our escape, it doesn't matter. The leaving didn't have to be perfect. We all have and will continue to digest our experiences and so many on this site still value various aspects of dharma, meditation, spiritual practice. So that's a good thing, at least from my point of view.

Totalitarian systems never work and are always harmful - whether they are nations, religions, political parties, or small religious institutions.

Still my favorite teaching -- don't fool yourself, don't fool others.

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/10/2012, 9:39 pm

funny, just after I posted that, i heard someone on a television show - coming from the bedroom -- "if you love someone, set them free." Kind of a cliche, I guess. Not sure precisely who said this originally. Probably from a pop song. But, there is some simple truth here, yes?

If you love someone, you don't think you own them or possess them or try to manipulate them and try to hurt them or get even. You don't do any of those things. If you love someone, you want them to be autonomous, spiritual adults, happy in their life. So what also comes across so clearly in Myozen's accounts - and in the stories of many people on this site and also from my experiences -- is that Kennett had no idea how to love..... anyone. Not as far as I could tell.

Love is not some vague concept about Fugen or Kanzeon or about giving sermons about compassion, it snot about what you say sitting on some throne ... it is how you treat people in daily life. How you care about them - without conditions - and how you support their decisions and choices. Demanding adoration and blind obedience ain't love.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 4:19 am

Myozen thanks for the post.
I do not think it wise to go down the 'well she was teaching me something route' as that is excusing any type of behavior.
A hard question but was there any compassion and love taught by Kennett Roshi? this sort of backbiting and having people in and out is very peculiar. I would imagine that JK spent all her time in the guest department at Sojiji Temple,She certainly never lived in a sodo she may have written about it but not lived through it.
It is back to our question of what is passed on to a lesser extent what is taught,Buddhism at this basic level can be taught at school and university,but experienced, this is a little different. Even though one can sweat it out in a sodo and certainly learn a lot from spiritually being stripped naked, I feel the real understanding comes from living normal life.
The story of the Buddha is so attractive to us because he was determined to peep behind the facade of life that he was shown and saw the reality of change ,impermanence , and sadness, the human condition a smile lasts a few seconds our treasured empires crumble to dust, our volition and thoughts never last,our sense of our own self and purpose fades as day fades and a starlit sky creates light and quietly creeps into the zendo. compassion and love I do not believe come from an elevated position of our selves,we do not have to be Mr or Mrs invincible to demonstrate our understanding when the bell rings,our understanding is really meaningless and unimportant,it is within the depth of our self that we meet our humanity, it is here where we meet mankind where we meet compassion and love,here is where we unite our selves and the world. Stamping ones feet and shouting out follow me have nothing to do with this raw spirituality of the sodo.

Sadly my girlfriend lost her tiny baby growing inside her it was not fully formed and maybe had not developed a personality but we had become attached to the little being and felt very sad,the doctor said we could try again,and we did struggle for some explanation of which there was non,I felt moved that my girlfriend wanted my baby,yesterday we were told she had a lump on her breast and would have to go to the local mermaid center at the hospital to be checked out. we cant escape life and death we can join the human race learn to love our selves and others our zazen will take us to our hearts when the teaching points us somewhere else it is time not to be fooled

Life and death
My friend
So hard to understand
My friend
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 10:23 am

Oh, Michael. I am so sorry. Sending love to you and your lady -
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 12:17 pm

Michael

Thinking of you and your partner.You will learn much from these events,but life can be a [banned term],eh?

Prayers and thoughts

Ikuko

Isan

Re Code of Conduct:

Thank you for the Dharma Rain link.They have pulled together a sound document regarding ethics and standards.I will study it and look at my plans in light .Great! linking with sangha! Just why I join in this site!

Gassho

Ikuko
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 2:25 pm

:-) Chisan, I am sorry about your loss... Take care.

:-) Hi Myozen!

Nemo Roshi sends her regards, but this may mean a storm is brewing ;-)

Many thanks for elaborating further on the “letter fiasco”…

At least Kennett Roshi’s friend would have been aware of inaccuracies that applied to him (e.g that he had received no “request” from you to keep to silent, and so had not “complied”), and whether you had caused him “grief and harm”. You mentioned in your previous post (https://obcconnect.forumotion.net/t537p250-myozen-delport#9425) that he “had written a rather emotional letter to her with regard to a slightly different aspect” than the transfer of teacher, and that “somehow Kennett Roshi completely focused on my change of teachers”…so it seems that she assumed your (non-existent) “deceit” had resulted in his distress? (I have enjoyed reading about his various activities, by the way:-)

Did she mention “Toronto” as the location of the “temple” you were asked to leave? I am wondering if she considerably condensed time, leapfrogging over the interim period between your request to get married and your request to return from Vancouver to Shasta Abbey in 1972? If this is the case: a) the wording “since neither of them would obey the rules of the temple” does readily read like an imputation of “improprieties”/wilful misdemeanour, but might mean that you would not be abiding by the all-celibate rules of Shasta Abbey; and b) the wording “they were asked to leave” wouldn’t be accurate if you simply moved from Vancouver to the Hazelton area without setting foot again in the abbey, but I suppose it could be effect-by-default. I am not trying to downplay anything here…I guess if the wording had a more innocent implication than readily apparent you might feel a teeny bit better about it (even if one has to read it upside down and squinting hard to understand the meaning!)

The following is from Zen is Eternal Life (a.k.a Selling Water by the River)…
Kennett Roshi wrote:
If we are to truly fulfill the Bodhisattva vow, we must do something more practical than be passive about everything; we must exhibit dynamic activity in the way in which we teach others, and this dynamic way is often very painful to the pupil. This is because the Zen mind, if it has truly understood the heart of Avalokiteśvara, Compassion, and heart of Samantabhadra, Love, is going to think quite differently from the way in which the world thinks, and it is also going to behave quite differently. This ‘strange’ behaviour has often acquired Zen teachers bad characters, bad reputations and many difficulties but, if the teacher is a true one, he will accept all of this simply because he knows that what he did was done from the standpoint of non-self for the purpose of teaching others …

Compassion means to be merciful but true mercy does not necessarily wear a white dress and look like a beautiful lady … nor does its active side, love, necessarily express itself in gentle action. Every doctor knows that when patients are suffering from hysteria it is better to slap them than to make a fuss of them — this is not cruelty, it is kindness. The Zen teacher is in the same position as the doctor in this respect. He must first diagnose the spiritual “illness” from the trainee’s questions, and then administer the cure thereof, and he will not be gentle in the way in which he does it …
Sticking out my neck and sticking on my doctor’s hat, in possible understatement I suggest that sometimes Kennett Roshi may have overestimated her ‘diagnostic’ accuracy, and may have taken her ‘patients’ disagreement with diagnoses as symptomatic of a yet more serious condition. Perhaps for some people and in some situations, her assessments were very accurate; and in others, very inaccurate. Obviously the purpose of any medical diagnosis is not to see how much inaccuracy the patient will put up with…“Trust me — I’m a doctor” is not a spell for infallibility!

Even with right diagnosis, there is the matter of ‘prescription’ (note: slapping has not been regarded medically as good treatment for hysteria)… I have run out of time to say anything much useful or coherent, but someone may have abandoned divisive enmity mentally (in terms of illusoryself-view/grasping) and yet sometimes take up ‘adversarial mode’, where one tries to pounce on the other person rather than try to work from their side, which may seem to promise a quick fix to the exasperated: e.g duff the other person up, give ‘em enough pain, or even shock them into attention, and they’ll toe the line/smarten up (hopefully). To end this tendency takes a deliberate choice and a greater effort; and may be harder if one feels ‘under the weather’, for example. I found that deciding to work on this non-combatant approach helped to loosen and release further inner bonds (and so conflicts), freeing the mind into experiencing greater spaciousness and openness, clarity, which furthers the process of freeing oneself from dualistic conflicts…and not doing so may simply maintain those particular bonds, conflicts, etc, in the stream of mind-energy. (-:
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 3:19 pm

Thank you Lise Ikuko and Anne for your kind thoughts

Anne having carefully studied your last post when you say:

duff the other person up, give ‘em enough pain, or even shock them into attention

I have reached the point where I would settle for that rather than another piece of the mature stewed mung bean and organic turnip pie
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/11/2012, 6:30 pm

Mike,

My heartfelt best wishes to you and your girlfriend.
I really hope that these difficult times for you both soon resolve into happier times.
Thinking of you,
Stan.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 1:26 am

Thanks Stan I always smile when I see your name pop up because I always think of driving around in the red mini car! All those years ago!
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 6:43 am

Hi Mike.

Yes, I well remember `mini mick`s` mini alright. I think it was famous at the
time. infamous anyway.
I think it was the only mini that managed to fit four people, your guitar and
more universe inside than outside the car !
I remember we nearly started our own little `mini-monastery` together.
Do you remember the first ever question you ever asked Jiyu round at Bill
Prince`s place ? Cheeky boy !
Non `illigitimus carborundum`

Stan.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 6:57 am

You have me there Stan I can not remember JK going to Bill Prince,I thought I did not see her after Tahtata Centre until I saw her at Sarum house in London,I then saw her in Birmingham I think at Dorothy Bailey whom you know..I believe.

You are right though Mini Micks car was famous (infamous) I remember the cops pulling in behind us at midnight in deepest countryside...that was 44 years ago and I am still laughing,was it you Stan that liked Frank Zappa?
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 12:35 pm

Hi Mike,

It might just possibly have been at Alan McCormack`s place in West Bridgeford.
Nottingham anyway. I remember after J.K`s talk to a packed room, everyone
was asking all sorts of questions . You were next to me and you asked her if
she had ever had sex. I remember being torn between wanting to laugh and
pretending not to know you ! She answered you straight back...which I thought
was pretty cool. There`s something really enlivening about getting directly to
the point with a question. Maybe you should have gone the Rinzai route ? .
Do you feel a poem coming on ? LOL.

You`re right, I did know Dorothy Bailey well. A lovely lady and very early in
English Buddhism. I lodged at her place once when I wanted to be away from
all my usual life and trappings. She`s still alive although I havn`t been in touch
for ages. Another strong woman of the period, having to stand her ground
against the greater male chauvinism of the times.

I recall one time at Throssel when Mokurai had been talking about the equality
of women. I said that equality is o.k but does not mean the same as. for
instance, I`m pretty sure that women generally can sow better than men.
Well, she took great umbrage to that...calling on Mokurai to set me straight.
However, Mokurai , to her annoyance, just kept silent. Good chap Mokurai .

I remember now being questioned by the cops at midnight too. I wonder what
they thought. four hippies plus guitar in a tiny car in a field at midnight.
I remember it made perfect sense at the time but.....

I did like Frank Zappa though not excessively .....`Hot Rats`.

Good feelings....still laughing.

Stan.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 2:53 pm

Gosh your memory is better than mine I can not remember all that for sure..I hope JK gave me a good reply it does depend on the context,but knowing me I think I needed a good reply! I don't blame you for pretending not to know me!

Mini car in the field I remember 4 of us in the car with guitar and we had some guy in with us who played in 'a band' cant remember which band, and he suddenly pulled out a blues harp and could he play,it was a brilliant concert in a mini car lol. A few years later when I was wearing robes another friend who played in a top band took me into an old warehouse to meet a fiddle maker, my friend pulled a bodhran from a shoulder bag and the two of them played first class music.The reason i asked if it was you that liked Frank Zappa was I met a guitarist from his band when I was in America at a zen centre.he came over to stay with us here in Cornwall,at the end of his stay he like all the others pulled a guitar out,and wow he played so well I was really surprised I did not know that Frank demanded quality musicians like that.

And from those early wild days to being a strict monk in a strict temple,shared moments are shared moments,the difference is direction that is abled to be offered. I think remembering our search and vivid tour through the undergrowth of our wild and sometimes intoxicated minds was sincere, sometimes looking in the 'wrong ' place sometimes not,sometimes realizing that the genuine search must be done without narcotic aids and sadly for some sometimes not. Meeting wise people inspires us to continue and deepen this 'search',sometimes we share the vastness of the search together.

No harm in being direct


But where does it lead to


Birds are surely part of


The vast sky
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 8:40 pm

Chisan,
We are so very sorry to hear what happened. Our thoughts are with you and your girlfriend and hope that her tests prove to be benign. Perry adds "not to give up faith" and that he "wishes the little one a happier next beginning."

Such a beautiful and touching post, Chisan.

Isn't it such a delight to be in contact with friends on this forum!


Josh,
Thank you for your thoughtful and supportive comments. After reading your post I felt such a sense of peace and well-being. Writing about all these matters - going through those letters and journals - sometimes has felt like being raked over the coals again, but for a positive reason this time, though! It is surprising how one is unaware of what has crystallized in the unconscious, until what feels like scales or armour begins to drop away and you feel the sense of freedom from the "dis-ease" of something that had been unintentionally harboured within.

At this point, I don't know where to fit this in - Perry, who is a reflective and conciliatory person, has been hearing about these matters for the first time since we met in 1981 and last night added his own comments, which has said I may post here. He said that to him it seems that Kennett Roshi targeted the persons she wanted to discredit: "the ones who knew more than she did, the ones who received attention, and the ones who questioned her. She was like the schoolyard bully who made up the rules as she went along."

It was also moving reading about the synchronicity in relation to your post - "if you love someone, set them free." There is so much poignancy in considering how Kennett Roshi limited herself as well in limiting her students. When we were sitting in the doctor's waiting room again yesterday morning I picked up a magazine to look at since it had an article on water gardens - instead I read an article on a former CEO of a large Ontario corporation who had to deal with the aftermath of being fired unjustly and with the treatment she received from the media. Some of her wording in discussing her process were so familiar. She began attending retreats at a Catholic monastery and later ordained in the Anglican Church. When reading about her experience I thought of the synchronicity in your post.


Anne,
I will get out the southwesters and the Wellies, and Perry will check the stablizers on the boat :-)

In his letter to Kennett Roshi, her friend had informed her that I had been transmitted by my teacher, but nothing about me causing him personal grief. Kennett Roshi had sent his letter to me, as mentioned in the previous post, together with a covering letter (which I would have to look for in the bundle) in which she said she had the letter translated and understood the contents. Her friend did have an idiosyncratic way of writing, so the translator may also have misunderstood what he was conveying? It is difficult to write about the circumstances here since I would have to explain the matter which he wrote to her about - and that pertains to someone else - a whole lot of issues were suddenly lumped together and responded to by Kennett Roshi. The endearing thing about her friend was that after he would go off on some emotional tangent or another, he would later chuckle sheepishly and say that he had "goofed up".

Regarding the (non-existing) Toronto temple - I want hunting for my previous mention of this on the forum (September 9th). She claimed that I had been thrown out of the Toronto temple because of sexual misconduct. (Unfortunately I do not have a copy of the letter she sent to Soto Headquarters, as mentioned before, so I am relying on memory here). In the letter I have which she wrote to her friend, she used less sharp terms, stating that I "was asked to leave the Toronto temple because the ... lady with whom she was staying objected to Myozen having men friends. Myozen returned to this temple [Shasta Abbey] followed by one of the men friends." The actual events are that I had gone to Toronto to apply for an immigration visa to the United States in 1970. I was boarding at a widow's home together with a young woman from Turkey and a young man from India. We had small individual rooms and shared a kitchen and bathroom. I did not have many visitors and those who did visit were interested in Buddhism and zazen. I usually visited at the homes of the people I befriended there, most being university faculty members. There was no Zen temple in Toronto at the time, with only the small informal zazen meetings I led. I used to visit the Japanese Jodo Shinshu temple and the Chinese temple in Don Mills, near Toronto. There were two resident monks at the Chinese temple - the one monk who was more fluent in English taught me about the sutras, etc. while the other monk taught me the preparation of some vegetarian Chinese dishes. I recall them checking my shaved head wondering where the incense burn scars are - I told them this was not a custom in Japan (in Zen, anyway). The Chinese lay community of practitioners were very welcoming and kind to me. I gave a talk at the Jodo Shinshu temple one Sunday and still have a letter from the Bishop and his wife inviting me to visit them again after I had left Toronto. I also found a Christmas card from the widow where I had boarded, which she had sent to Shasta Abbey in 1972 after we had already moved to Hazelton (forwarded by Shasta Abbey) in which she writes that she hopes all is well at Shasta Abbey and that she thinks of me often and sends her warmest regards also to Arnold. Obviously, Kennett Roshi's statement was an untruth.

As for the "man friend" who followed me to Shasta Abbey - I met Arnold in a bookstore in Toronto where he was working at the time. I had entered the bookstore with shaved head and robes so he noticed me and came over to talk to me. He told me he had written to a Zen monastery and was preparing to go there in the very near future (I have now forgotten the time frame). When I questioned him it turned out that he was talking about Kennett Roshi and Shasta Abbey, and we laughed at this coincidence/synchronicity. He came to visit me only once where I was staying and this was the evening before I was to leave for Shasta Abbey. He did not "follow" me - at the time we met he was already preparing to go to Kennett Roshi and did arrive sometime after my return.

The matter of us not obeying temple rules is another creative endeavour on Kennett Roshi's part. At that time there were no celibacy rules at Shasta Abbey. There were other married couples and Kennett Roshi herself had performed our wedding ceremony, after which Arnold and I shared a house. Her demand for Arnold to pay both fees was remedied by going to where we could both work legally, which meant Canada. As mentioned, cordial relations continued with Kennett Roshi even after she had informed us that (a) the Abbey was full and (b) that married couples were no longer allowed.

I am repeating myself here - like being on a merry-go-round!

The section you quote from Zen is Eternal Life sounds elevated and wise, but appears as another indication of the great discrepancy between Kennett Roshi's words and her actions. As Josh also says, "Love is not some vague concept about Fugen or Kanzeon or about giving someone compassion, it is not about what you say sitting on some throne ... it is how you treat people in daily life", and when Chisan says, "it is within the depth of our self that we meet our humanity, it is here where we meet mankind where we meet compassion and love, here is where we unite our selves with the world". I like the words I once heard from a tire commercial on television - "where the rubber meets the road" - it is in how we treat others that our practice "meets the road".

Anne, when I told Perry about the Unpuku-ji dream of Kennett Roshi with the sword, he reminded me of the skit by his favourite comedian, Ken Shimura, called "Kendo/Kenjutsu Training" on YouTube. It contains impolite anatomical references and language, so it would not be appropriate to post here ... but it is fun and lightened things up. (Hope this does not offend, in which case I do apologize. I am probably going to regret posting this as soon as I click on "send").

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/12/2012, 10:11 pm

Mike - Sad, sad, sad - 'troubles come not singly...' My heart goes out to you and your lovely lady, she always seems so sensible and full of life. All love to you both Mark
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 5:05 am

Hi Mike,

No problems...I didn`t actually pretend not to know you but,....it crossed my
mind at the moment of your question ! It was a very personal question but
also must have been a valid one for you. JK also must have thought so too
because she answered directly back. She said..."No, but I have lots of nice
children wherever I go"....with a wink in your direction.

I liked your mention of Frank Zappa. Although not a particular favourite of mine,
I thought he was a great guitarist and surprisingly accomplished musician.
He wrote out multi part scores for his musicians and woe betide any mistakes.
Not many band musicians of the times could read `proper` music unlike the
jazz guys. Your friend must have been pretty good.
I like the fact that president Vaclav Havel of Czechoslovakia had a statue
erected in his honour when communism fell in Eastern Europe.

" Sometimes we share the vastness of the search together". Yes,it`s quite
wonderful really. I wonder if we are ever really apart.

Stan.
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 12:02 pm

Mark Thank you
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 12:04 pm

Stan well there you go i can't remember any of the JK encounter I am pleased it did not offend her and a good reply too.
Yes my friend the guitarist did play jazz as well as read the dots,I recall he played a jazz version of Elanor Rigby.Cornwall is a very artistic and musical place,many players who paint a bit move down, and also players who want to get away and look at the sea and enjoyed unpolluted light,or maybe come back from touring and want to breathe in again,I have met and played with wonderful players.


Interesting you ask
I wonder if we are ever really apart
I think the real question should be
Why do we choose to separate ourselves?
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Anne

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 1:36 pm

:-) Myozen, I watched that Ken Shimura skit after you mentioned him to me in a PM, and thought it might be strangely reminiscent of some people's experiences at Shasta ;-)

In view of what I have read on OBCC, to me the quotation from ZEL seems to hint at/allude to a culturally dour approach to 'prescriptive treatment'. Perhaps Kennett Roshi was thinking also of challenges posed by practitioners who did not want to train but who came to Zen training-monasteries for other reasons; but though she has mentioned that this was sometimes the case for social reasons in Japan, I imagine it would have been relatively rare in the West. In an earlier chapter, she wrote of Avalokiteśvara also appearing as "teachers who are cruel to be kind to their pupils. The true meaning of compassion is often misunderstood." In the real world one may be at ones wits' end as to how to deal with something -- which is why I sent CMH some mature stewed mung bean and organic turnip pie, and am now nearing the end of a 14 months' oolichan-fermenting process...after which I will send him the cans without the usual "DANGER EXPLOSIVES" label -- but (as someone who never trained at Shasta) I wonder if, rather than think of such as a "wit's end" approach, it was regularly taken to be 'the right/proper Zen approach'? Only Old Shastanians would know.

I think you are well and truly vindicated, Myozen, for anyone viewing this public forum. Whatever Kennett Roshi's reasons for her creative account of the Toronto situation, she seems to have been too keen to discredit you to stick to fact...and if she was aware of not knowing/remembering the facts, then seemingly too keen to enquire. If she thought she was protecting some cause by this, all involved including herself would have benefited from her considering instead the facts and whatever challenges they might have posed for her.

I hope her Japanese friend managed to send her a letter with some clarification of what he knew personally.

Many thanks for your labours at further clarifying for me. (-:
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 3:22 pm

This cruel to be kind is a very dodgy subject,and incredibly open to abuse,misunderstanding,and personal interpretation.
Regarding Myozen I think one has to see it exactly as it is,the comments the lettes were as they were with no teaching involved other than another dodgy 'well that taught me how not to treat people'.
I think it was Josh that sent me a tape in the late 70s which had a girl desribe how Trumpa had bitten her on the cheek,and she said something wonderful about how it was a wonderful direct experience beyond self..well he was a lecherous old b''' as we now know. I would be interested how Myozen feels about this..In my experience it is the newly ordained people that do the pushing and shoving,the experienced people in a temple say this is how we do it this is our daily life practice,some will do it and some will not,but the skillful means is ensuring that this daily practice keeps going ,it is by practicing awareness that the idiosyncrasies of our self are first seen and then let go off.The long enduring mind of practice does not need tricks,true zen is passed on heart to heart when heart recognises heart
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 3:23 pm

posted twice
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 5:08 pm

:-) Myozen, when I asked previously "Did [Kennett Roshi] mention 'Toronto' as the location of the 'temple' you were asked to leave? I am wondering if she considerably condensed time, leapfrogging over the interim period between your request to get married and your request to return from Vancouver to Shasta Abbey in 1972?", I think I disoriented myself doing the temporal back-flip and went in two directions simultaneously! The "interim period" would have been that in which, after marriage, you and Arnold shared a house, then were required to pay fees and so went to work in Canada.

To clarify a bit further for this dimwit scratch was Kennett Roshi's account of your final leaving-taking from the Order summed up in "since we had no adequate place for married people to live, also since neither of them would obey the rules of the temple, they were asked to leave"? Was the estrangement arising over the WWG draft in 1974 ever mentioned in her letters (as I understand it, this being your reason for leaving)?

Do you know if she was in contact with the widow in Toronto? Alas, how Kennett Roshi arrived at your being "asked to leave the Toronto temple because the ... lady with whom she was staying objected to Myozen having men friends" may not be exactly determined (e.g inference from something this lady wrote).

Whatever the case may be, at least you have been able to write of actual events here. Were you ever able to present these to recipients of Kennett Roshi's letters, other than her Japanese friend? (-:
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/13/2012, 5:30 pm

Myozen and Perry thank you for your kind thoughts
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/14/2012, 5:08 pm

Sorry Myozen I might have missed the plot a little, did you translate any of the sciptures for Selling water by the river?

What have you translated of Dogen or Keizan

Who actually did the translations used in Selling water by the river,I have always assumed it was Kennett Roshi, but I think it is too much to expect that one can just turn up in Japan and learn to speak Japanese let alone read it ,and let alone old Japanese.

I am sure this is all common knowledge to everyone but I would like to hear it from you...You are very modest and so do not list your achievements but you are cleary very skilled at reading and writing Japanese i would like to know what you have translated...please
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/14/2012, 9:05 pm

Anne,
Those fermented oolichans would be potent indeed ... it may cause a melt-down :-) When I think of oolichans, left to drain for 5 days, it reminds me of when Perry's mother and I were shoveling the oolichans into buckets so that they could go into the boilers for making the grease. She slipped, and I tried to steady her only to slip myself so we both ended up sprawled in the oolichan bin.

In relation to the challenges posed by practitioners who do not want to train - I agree that "this would have been relatively rare in the West", as you say. I watched a discussion forum on the telly in Seiden-ji, in which monks representing all the major sects in Japan were participating - only 15% stated that they were monks by choice (what Kennett Roshi called "volunteer monks") due to the system in Japan where a son (or adopted son) inherits his father's temple. This was in 1978, so I not know what the statistics are now. I only quite recently read Kaoru Nonomura's Eat Sleep Sit: My Year at Japan's Most Rigorous Zen Temple.

The matter of "teachers who are being cruel to be kind to their pupils" - as a form of skillful means it is one potentially open to abuse, as Chisan says. Spiritual maturity of the teacher through deep experience, and integrity is required for this to be a successful expedient means. It is a method between teacher and student and would not infer slander by conveying untruths about students, as well as their families, to others or outside of the immediate teaching venue.

The leave-taking of the Order was after the WWG draft incident, and not because of the matter of the abbey being full or married couples no longer being allowed. The severing of ties was affirmed further by the letter I sent her after the letters she sent to her friend/Soto Headquarters. Kennett Roshi did not mention estrangement which arose over the WWG draft in any of her letters - in her accounts all the blame was squarely placed on me. It seems that she had created an alternative "Myozen" in her mind upon whom she projected all manner of evils!

As far as I know, Kennett Roshi had not been in contact with the widow. Perhaps Kennett Roshi construed the matter of her objecting to my having men friends since she knew where I had been staying because I had told her, and she knew I had met Arnold - whom she had already accepted as a student through correspondence - in Toronto during that time. Kennett Roshi seemed to often resort to accusations connected to sexuality, a tactic she employed to even break up friendships I made with women.

These matters (minus specifics) were discussed with my Japanese family, my teacher, and a representative of Soto Headquarters in an attempt to sort through the mess - her friend's son-in-law was included in these discussions. This forum is the first time I have presented the specifics of these issues openly or publicly, since rather embarrassing not only to myself. I hope Isan does not mind my mentioning this again, but it was the article in Tricycle that encouraged me to start networking ... gassho. I am happy I have, Anne, thank you for your patience with the story.

Chisan,
So true - "the long enduring mind of practice does not need tricks, true Zen is passed on heart to heart when heart recognizes heart". I think it is a "sacred trust" which is not to be betrayed or violated. It reminds me of "... when Buddha sees Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up between two stones ..."

The translations appearing in Selling Water by the River were based on pre-existing translations, and not from original texts translated by Kennett Roshi herself. (She was not very proficient in Japanese so it is highly unlikely that she would have been able to translate material that even experienced Japanese scholars find difficult). When I was in Unpuku-ji she was working from drafts made of verbal/dictated translations by Suigan Yogo which she would rephrase and rework. Shortly after I arrived at Unpuku-ji Kennett Roshi gave me a typed manuscript which had been published by Soji-ji Foreign Guest Department, with a preface by her dated July 23rd, 1967 in her capacity as foreign guest master. This manuscript titled Zen is Eternal Life, consists of what became Book I of Selling Water by the River. In the acknowledgements in the 1971 edition she lists Daisetz Suzuki and Reiho Matsunaga's translations as sources. Contrary to her acknowledgements, I did not translate the Dogen material in Selling Water by the River. I translated the "General and Special Offertories" and compiled the glossary (which has a misprint - gyoun-ryusyu instead of gyoun-ryusui). At Shasta Abbey I continued with the translation of Keizan's Denkoroku where it left off at Chapter XV - for a while with a scholar of Chinese - which was serialized in the Journal of the Zen Mission Society. In Hazelton I was working on a translation of another of Koho Zenji's books. Later in Terrace I started translating Dogen's Eihei Koroku for the zazenkai - I was happy when I eventually obtained Yuho Yokoi's translation and later that by Taigen Leighton and Shohaku Okumura!

Hope you are keeping well, Chisan.

There is a storm again with heavy rain and strong winds - Perry says it would be good for a skateboarder wearing a (rainproof) poncho.

Gassho,
Myozen
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 1:58 am

Thanks for the reply Myozen,I assumed all the time that kennett Roshi did do the translation with Suigan Yogo.

When I left involvement with JK I actually simply left and never thought more about it,I had initial contact with Josh,Keitetsu phoned me once when he was in the UK, i saw Daiji in the early days of his leaving and then later in Cornwall. I did not know who had left nor why, I knew Gensho had left.

Did you know so many people had left?


Were you surprised how things,like people leaving, had gone at Shasta,especially as you had seen the very early days?

I assume that from the early days in Japan you saw a change in JK as she seem to ostracize you and her personality change from friendly to not wanting to know you. Is it fair to assume that?


Interesting in Wikipedia Stephen batchelor says of the visions that JK had as
'She interpreted the experience as that of a 'third kensho' for me the important point is the word she. It seems peculiar that reading what you say and other people say it is like we were almost chased off,from the early days it looks like almost everybody left jisho Perry stayed.
I have just read a report that with the financial crisis in the world journalists feel their role is for to ensure greater accountability of banks etc, I think the same with zen organizations and maybe all Buddhist ; people who sit and go through what we have all gone through either pack it up; or tend to carry on by moving more up the mountain on their own. 15% of japanese saying they wanted to be at a temple actually seems high to me.
A few questions for you there.
2 more
Did you meet Kodo Sawaki?
Did Jk meet him?
take care
I am fine thanks Tamara my girlfriend has appointment next week for tests
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 4:10 am

Dearest Dorset

Aha, you mention the cans without the usual "DANGER EXPLOSIVES" label

no worries here i must confess I have been feeding your products to my cat for years,she is called 'Grey and White' because she is, grey and white,she only has 1 eye and cant read so well these days, she coud before, as she would ignore the cheap cat food and only move when I eventually gave in and pulled out the expensive ones,however she actually prefers the "DANGER EXPLOSIVES" ones more.There is no immediate warning but with experience we do feed her outside now.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 4:40 am

Gosh i am having a dodgy reading and writing day today so many edits and rereading!!

Myozen I love this:

when Buddha sees Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up between two stones ..."
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 2:17 pm

Chisan,
So glad to hear you and Tamara are doing well.

There are coloured leaves over the entire yard after last night's storm - quite beautiful - so some raking coming up when the rain stops.

When I began looking at this forum before joining, I was very surprised to learn how many people had left Shasta Abbey. Of the sangha family I knew there at the time it appeared that only Jisho and Eko had remained. It is so wonderful that the contact has been maintained in this forum sangha, though.

In the early days at Unpuku-ji Kennett Roshi was teaching content in accord with "mainstream" Soto tradition. In the beginning she was very nurturing and warm towards me, but the Japanese language thing somehow rankled her too much. It was a wee bit confusing having the Japanese language as a source of my troubles, while at the same time being commissioned to use it to help her. The mirror she held up to me was telling me that I was a persona non grata in some sense but she was still making the necessary arrangements for me to accompany her and Mokurai to the United States. The first change in her style I recall was the introduction of wagesa instead of rakusu - in Oakland I believe - and then the design for the new type of robe for which she gave me instructions so that I could sew them - they were grey with purple tie-ribbons at the side. I escaped the parson's collars, it seems!

I am trying to recall whether Kennett Roshi had met Kodo Sawsaki or not, although she had mentioned him in passing - the small zazenkai handbook which I had bought at a Buddhist bookstore in Nagoya, and which I had with me at Unpuku-ji, contained photographs of him demonstrating zazen and kinhin postures. He had already passed away, so I did not meet him.

Your mention of Trungpa reminded me of something. Kennett Roshi had copies of the London Buddhist Society's The Middle Way and I believe it was in one of these copies that I first read about Trungpa and had felt admiration for his achievements in the midst of the struggles he had experienced as a Tibetan. So, when I heard he was to give a talk in Toronto while I was there in 1970, I went. In my robes with shaved head I was the least colourful of the assembly! I now no longer remember the content of the talk, although I do remember some of his gestures and the demure manner of Diana as she sat on the stage with him. He spotted me and came walking up to me with a cane - everyone respectfully parting to make way for him - and asked me if I was a Zen monk. When I answered "yes", he responded with "I am interested in Zen. You should join me." To use Kennett Roshi's phrase, "alarm bells went off in my skull", and I replied, "I have a teacher, thank you" - upon which he turned around and walked away.

After your question regarding what I had translated, I wondered if the translation of Koho Zenji's book was later completed at Shasta Abbey. I believe I had sent her sections as I completed them. In Vancouver in 1971 I started typing up the notes I made as I was doing translations and compiling the glossary for Kennett Roshi, arranging them in alphabetical order and it gradually turned into a "Buddhist dictionary" which I completed in Hazelton in 1976 shortly before my son was born. Kennett Roshi's friend did some excellent calligraphy for the cover. At Seiden-ji in 1978 I started the project of compiling a "monks' handbook" - for personal use - consisting of translations I made of the Soto Headquarters publication Shuryo Hikkei and other Headquarters publications. It kept growing until I revised and bound it in Terrace in 2002 for Hodo's use as well. During the time I was working on this I often wondered if Kennett Roshi would have found use for it since it contains material not in Selling Water by the River? I really did enjoy the translation work for her - it is so wondrous seeing words develop from one language to another. Original texts have their idiosyncrasies which give them life and texture, but which is quite a challenge to convey in a different language.

Chisan, I also love the quote "when Buddha meets Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up from two stones" - I recall it from Unpuku-ji but have not been able to find where it is from.

Perry also chuckled when I told him about Grey and White and his choice of foods. Our long-haired "Siamese" - named 'Cookies' by Perry's father because he loved cookies - goes bonkers over smoked fish. We spent two days helping a friend with her smokehouse, coming home on Saturday with some of the fish. Whenever I open a package of dried smoked fish he would sense it no matter where he is in the house and would meow enthusiastically until I give him some. Cookies was born in Kitamaat Village so perhaps his mother raided smokehouses and brought some treats to her kittens once in a while.

Sorry, this has become a long post. Hope you are enjoying your evening.

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 2:32 pm

myozen wrote:
"when Buddha meets Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up from two stones"

I recall it from Unpuku-ji but have not been able to find where it is from.

I first saw this phrase in the transmission book. I don't know if it has an earlier source.
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/15/2012, 10:39 pm

Thank you, Isan.

I did a Google search and according to earlywomenmasters.net the quote also appears in Volume 2 of Roar of the Tigress - "Thus when Buddha beholds Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up between two stones".

It would be interesting to trace an earlier source than the transmission book, if it exists?

Gassho,
Myozen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 12:46 am

[but the Japanese language thing somehow rankled her too much]

umm


What does zen have to do with language , custom, time, color,sex,age or any discriminary aspect of our thoughts and minds.


I believe that we are fortunate to have come across zen Buddhism and the teaching of the importance of everyday life. Even though zen is often taught in the confines of a temple and the strict regulations of the temple,the real test of practice,the way to really deepen ones practice is living a normal life.In society going to work ,bringing up children,working.... the sucesses... the failures. Being successful does not in itself make a Buddha neither does failing in ones efforts make one any less of a person,the true way is beyond such judgements,in fact seeing the emptyness of our own volition whilst living with awareness love and compassion is the same as sitting in a zendo without aim, without wanting any particular state of conciousness,or any desire for gain,the sitting and the living should be full of life itself.
here now is of course where we are and anything else is extra,where else can we practice such a path.

Myozen it is a thoughtful time with Tamara and myself
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 12:49 am

"Thus when Buddha beholds Buddha, Buddha disappears and one fire springs up between two stones".


It sounds like Dogen
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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 2:21 am

Myozen

In reply to your post of Oct. 7th, yes, of course, I'd love to hear about "your" bridge at Gitwinksihlkw, if and when you do go there. It is such a beautiful area of the great Northwest, and after you mentioned the Lava beds I ended up looking at the history of the area a bit, which was pretty fascinating. . The Artwork also, especially the carvings, are absolutely exquisite, especially the Chiefs Rattle. I also had a good laugh at your desciption of you and your Mother in Laws Vat escapade.

Chisan, I still don't know how to do that quote thing, so I copied and pasted what you just wrote down below and you said it perfectly, thank you . Often, after trying to think how to express something just the right way and not being able to say it without having to write a lengthy article someone comes along and lays it out quite perfectly . Also, so sorry about the recent difficult events in your life.

Chisan said:

"I believe that we are fortunate to have come across zen Buddhism and the teaching of the importance of everyday life. Even though zen is often taught in the confines of a temple and the strict regulations of the temple,the real test of practice,the way to really deepen ones practice is living a normal life.In society going to work ,bringing up children,working.... the sucesses... the failures. Being successful does not in itself make a Buddha neither does failing in ones efforts make one any less of a person,the true way is beyond such judgements,in fact seeing the emptyness of our own volition whilst living with awareness love and compassion is the same as sitting in a zendo without aim, without wanting any particular state of conciousness,or any desire for gain,the sitting and the living should be full of life itself."
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Nicky




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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 3:04 am

Chisan ,
I'm so sorry to hear about the sad difficult things going on with your girlfriend ,
and you . It sounds like you're dealing with it well and richly , and i send my love , to you both.

Also , yes , as Breljo says ,i too appreciate the description ( cant find the right word ...) of living zen buddhism .

I look in this site , and either get a dismal reminder of all thats gone wrong, and i struggle with the complicated stories . Or, like today, i receive a wonderful lift and a stronger reminder of the 'one fire that springs up between 2 stones .'
So thanks everyone .
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http://www.Nickyloutit.co.uk
Anne

Anne


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 5:33 am

:-) Hi Myozen!

I've found a picture of an oolichan bin. Did it look somewhat like this (before you and Ma-in-law fell in)?...
Myozen Delport - Page 7 Images35 ...I have checked YouTube for videos...if you and Ma-in-law can manage again, it would be a first :-)

Thank you for the interesting data on the 15% volunteer monks in Japan. (I've not read Kaoru Nonomura's book.)

I'm sorry to be so slow on the uptake...in her letters, did Kennett Roshi describe 'in her own words' the circumstances of your and Arnold's leave-taking? I'm wondering what account, if any, she gave of events (real or imagined) leading up to and including your departure.

I'm very glad you were able to clear up matters with Soto HQ. Did they mention anything about notifying the Bishop of Los Angeles, to whom Kennett Roshi may also have written? (-:

:-) Chisan, my very best wishes to Tamara.

I commend you on finding Arial Black, the colour red, and (I guess) also the Preview button...I am almost speechless with astonishment (I commiserate that it's not the whole thing) and most favourably impressed. (-:
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chisanmichaelhughes

chisanmichaelhughes


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 11:44 am

Breljo,Nicky and Anne thanks for your kind words it means a lot
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chisanmichaelhughes

chisanmichaelhughes


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 11:48 am

Dearest Dorset didn't you know by now that I cheat! I can,t find the Arial Black, the colour red

But I can copy and paste DANGER EXPLOSIVES
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Anne

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 1:13 pm

:-) I am almost as impressed as before, CMH. When I try to copy-and-paste it comes out as DANGER EXPLOSIVES not DANGER EXPLOSIVES
What is your secret? Exclamation scratch Question
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chisanmichaelhughes

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 1:32 pm

when i copy this Arial Black, the colour red

every word after is red and I cant turn if off

after copying DANGER EXPLOSIVES I write like this

Does this mean if I listen to WILD HORSES I would dance like Mick Jagger

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myozen

myozen


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/16/2012, 8:15 pm

Chisan,
Heartfully agree that your comments regarding the importance of everyday life in deepening practice are so beautifully stated - they are also an effective reminder: if not our daily life in all circumstances - monastic or otherwise - then what is practice?

The clouds parted a bit today - first snow of the season on the mountains.


Brigitte,
We were so delighted to hear that you looked up the history of the lava beds and the culture of the Nass (Nisga'a). Although it is only about an hour's drive from Terrace, the landscape is evocative of a different world!

There are many picturesque spots along the Nass Highway. One year three of us hiked to the summit of Maroon Mountain, where we sat to chant the Hannya shingyo. A mist suddenly rose from the ravine, enveloping us and then disappearing just as quickly after the chanting!


Anne,
Yes, that is an oolichan bin (minus the olfactory component)! Much good our Wellington boots were at that stage ... Perry was laughing at oolichan bins crossing the Atlantic. The photograph, judging by the landscape, was taken at a camp in the Nass area, but still appears the same as the Haisla set-up. Perry comments that one cannot see whether there are hemlock branches under the oolichans, the way the Haisla do it - the layer of branches enable the oolichans to drain properly before they are transferred to the huge rectangular boilers, set on a fire pit, for the next step in the process of manufacturing the grease/oil. The fire pit is lined with a special clay to ensure that the heat is concentrated on the bottom of the boiler.

Kennett Roshi's account of events leading to our departure from Shasta Abbey (which was intended to be only temporary until we had saved enough money for the required fees) was as per her letter to her friend. ("Myozen and Arnold ... requested to get married, and since we had no adequate place for married people to live, also since neither of them would obey the rules of the temple, they were asked to leave") As discussed, this version is not a truthful account.

There was no further mention of communication with the Bishop of Los Angeles, so I do not know what became of that part of things. At the time I was not inclined to being bogged down by the specifics of the developments which had come so unexpectedly into a settled and peaceful life in a rather remote mountain village in Japan. Also too busy - in addition to the necessary ceremonies for the parish - drying the shiitake mushrooms, preserving the plums, drying the persimmons, harvesting the tea - all grown on the temple precincts - and attempting to keep the wild boars and crows out of the garden. The whole business also disrupted the lives of the members of the parish who lost the resident monk again (not to mention that of my son, who had his own little circle of pre-school friends!) The situation with Seiden-ji was that it had been difficult for several years to find a resident monk, due to the location, until we moved in - we found it to be an excellent place - as Josh has also commented, there are many empty temples in Japan. Now that some decades have passed, like in the experience of others as well, I think one can now begin to try to make sense of it all.

There were also wonderful things in the experiences with Kennett Roshi - the quote of fire springing up between two stones has always been a poignant reminder of this - but in the process of attempting to sort things out the negative aspects become emphasized. This too is practice - a bit rough, though :-)

Returning to the oolichan bin - Perry just reminded me to tell you this. When our boys (Perry's son and my son) were growing up in Kitamaat Village, Perry and I were involved in volunteer animal rescue work. In the house too the boys learned to take insects outside using an overturned glass jar and a sheet of stiff paper. So, on their first stay at oolichan camp the two of them, aged 7 and 4, were running back and forth between the bin and the river, rescuing any oolichans they would see still flipping.

Gassho,
Myozen
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Anne

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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/17/2012, 11:33 am

:-) Hi Myozen!

It is indeed a Nass bin. In the larger image one can see green branches sticking out beneath the fish... Myozen Delport - Page 7 Nassool18
...the associated website shows stages of the process... (http://www.livinglandscapes.bc.ca/northwest/oolichan_history/nass.htm).

Here's a Haisla bin by the Kemano river...
Myozen Delport - Page 7 Images36

It can be so difficult for children, or indeed anyone, coming to terms with our lives riding on the back of death. I had been thinking of becoming a vegetarian for about six months when I attended a weekend retreat led by Kennett Roshi in 1972; but I always feared taking that extra step in case someone pointed out to me the various ways in which I still had not escaped my involvement in killing...fear of not being 'perfect' and someone taking pleasure in rubbing it in! In response to a question from 'the floor' Kennett Roshi said that she tried to do what she felt she could to avoid causing harm but that she knew she could not be perfect, and gave the example of killing microbes as she breathed. She said she took responsibility for what she did, while accepting that she would not be perfect: her words shed light on my burden, showing me how to free myself from it, so that I could proceed with my wish.

Sometimes similar things return in slightly different or subtler forms. Being rather 'simple minded', I avoided thinking about the complexities of precepts for some time after I began practice, relying instead on a simple approach of correct intention/effort/ mindfulness/moment-by-moment meditation, trusting that the precepts (if valid) would be 'followed' naturally as a result of this. About a year after the aforementioned event, I took Jukai; and back home I determined to try to apply myself to the precepts, starting with the first... Laughably I was in the midst of weeding between homegrown vegetables when I recklessly thought of doing this...probably a good place to be as my predicament rapidly hit me between the eyes! I was very serious about the matter and actually decided that I had better kill myself...it was not a happy moment! With the gas-oven in mind I turned to walk toward the backdoor. I had barely taken a step or two when I realised simply that I did not wish to die. I saw that part of my obstacle to accepting myself as 'a killer' was that (metaphorically speaking) killing dirtied my nice white 'holy gown'; of course I didn't want to harm/hurt anything either. In deciding to live I accepted along with my responsibility the rather comic image of all the soybeans rising up against their masters one day in revolt (I can imagine the jokes now -- "The soya beans are revolting!", etc -- I may hear from Chisan about this; dang, I knew the karma was dreadful ;-) and learned that day squarely the very sobering fact of my being a killer.

I think this is one place the Mahayana schools part company with the Theravada because a traditional view in the latter is that an arhat/arahant would never intentionally kill. While a lay person can become an arahant in traditional Theravadin belief, s/he must ordain within a very short time or else will die (http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Lay_arahant); and bhikkus/bhikkunis are dependent on the laity for sustenance. Theravadin vinaya forbids intentional killing: I suspect this was originally partly because of what was expected of arahants (and other bhikkus/bhikkunis) by laity who supported them, but that some have supposed it to be somehow impossible anyway for an arahant to do...(yet folk still breathe despite knowing about those microbes ;-) Which kind of segues into the next bit...

Kennett Roshi studied Theravada Buddhism before she studied Zen, and did develop a belief that only unpartnered/celibate monastics could awaken beyond a certain point. I don't know when she began to sway around to this view: I think it came publicly to the fore in the 1980s but that signs existed earlier...she believed that her "third kensho" in 1976 was possible only because of some years as an unpartnered/celibate monk. Having a general perspective of first and second kenshoed laity or partnered/non-celibate monastics as like longterm tadpoles would surely have affected her perceptions of individual practitioners, their motivations and their credibility as own-witnesses, etc. I don't know that she started out with this view as a teacher; and I know little of other beliefs that might have affected her teaching and do not want to dump everything on the one mentioned...from the early days of your story, she did seem to read lack or vacillation of commitment to training-and-awakening into what was a natural, harmless or benign manner in you.

I can imagine having made many consequential diagnostic mistakes myself if I'd had the responsibility of teaching. These days (from my ivory tower of laydom!) I can say that I would probably keep efforts at 'diagnosis' low-key, and would avoid 'interventionism' in training. Letting go of diagnostic over-reach can be difficult, not for reasons of vanity but due to a compassion-based sense of obligation toward others -- a self-imposed belief that one ought to [be able to] know so as to help others free themselves from self-affliction, and belief that one can and should be able to know (i.e can control it) through being willing and making an effort.
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Lise
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Lise


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PostSubject: Re: Myozen Delport   Myozen Delport - Page 7 Empty10/17/2012, 2:35 pm

It's hard for me to try to view Kennett's statements and behaviour as a diagnostic mistake born of a compassionate wish, or compulsion, to help. I can't sift out any noble intent that justifies or explains her treatment of Myozen and others here.

It just sounds dark and ugly, and a sad depth to which a teacher could sink. I wonder what Kennett thought "defaming the sangha" meant, if in fact she did and said even a small fraction of what's been described on the forum.

This may be a foolish question but I wonder if she ever considered whether such actions were preceptual or not -
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