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Virtue, Concentration, Discernment

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 11/14/2018

 

“Concentration nurtured with virtue is of great fruit, great reward. Discernment nurtured with concentration is of great fruit, great reward. The mind nurtured with discernment is rightly released.” In this talk from November’s Shuso Hossen Sesshin, Shugen Roshi delves into this simple yet profound teaching from the Pali Canon. Ethical action, meditation and insight rely on and support each other, he notes, forming a unified path which can address the many aspects of our humanity.

Jukai Ceremony

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 11/11/2018

 

Shugen Roshi officiates a ceremony in which Nancy Meyer-Emerick (Eisho, “eternal bloom”), Constanza Ontaneda (Sokyo, “everyday sutra”), Steve Miron (Seigan, “sacred eye”), Achong Chen (Jusan, “pearl mountain”), Jonathan Rosenthal (Seiko, “boundless peace”), and Polly Horn (Kiho, “radiant dharma”) receive the sixteen Buddhist precepts and are given their new dharma names.

To Be Cultivated and Not To Be Cultivated

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 11/11/2018

 

Drawing on the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh, Chan Master Sheng-Yen, and IMS Teacher Joseph Goldstein, Gokan offers insight into how we stop creating evil, practice good, and actualize good for others. How does zazen help us to do that, to stay in our own experience? And how do zazen and the precepts give each other life?

From the Archives: A Vow of Service

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Bernard Tetsugen Glassman, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/26/1991

 

This is an excerpt of a retreat given by Bernie Tetsugen Glassman at Zen Mountain Monastery on October 26. 1991. Bernie Roshi, who passed away this past Sunday, was Taizan Maezumi Roshi’s first dharma heir at Zen Center of Los Angeles and played a key role in John Daido Loori’s founding of Zen Mountain Monastery. Here he discusses how to help people while still empowering them and the role of social action in Buddhist practice.  Bernie, as he humbly preferred to be known, pioneered the concept of street retreats, bringing hundreds of people to live as and among the homeless in order to get a glimpse of their reality and thereby cultivate compassion for those that our society often overlooks. He also led many Bearing Witness retreats, a mainstay of the Zen Peacemakers Order, bringing groups to sites of historic genocide and practicing the three tenets of Zen Peacemakers: not knowing (including not setting an agenda for one’s experience), bearing witness (not turning away), and taking action (within the framework of the Buddhist precepts). To learn more about Bernie Roshi’s life and accomplishments, visit ZenPeacemakers.org and please consider offering your support to that wonderful organization.

Fusatsu: Reverence

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 11/8/2018

 

Hojin Sensei, in a talk given during a renewal of vows ceremony, speaks about six forms of reverence: training, heedfulness, hospitality, and reverence for the buddha, dharma, and sangha.

Shakyamuni’s Flower

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye, Case #253

Zen Mountain Monastery, 11/4/2018

 

One Continuous Mistake

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 11/4/2018

 

Hogen Sensei teaches on impermanence , how nothing ever goes exactly according to plan, and how we must all  eventually face ourselves.

Kashyapa’s Flagpole

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

The Gateless Gate, Case #22

 Zen Center of New York City, 11/3/2018

Mondo on the Jataka Tales: Hairy Kassapa

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 10/31/2018

 

Hogen Sensei leads the last of three group study sessions on the Jataka Tales, legends about the previous lives of the Buddha found in the Pali Canon. Here he takes up the story of Kassapa, an ascetic whose almost abandons his commitment to non-harming in order to marry the king’s beautiful daughter, Candavati. The discussion focuses on gender, desire, objectification, and what it means to study texts from cultural contexts different than our own.

Dharma Encounter on Bowing

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/28/2018

 

Bowing before a teacher, an image, a sacred space, or a fellow practitioner, are inseparable acts of Buddhist practice. But what does it mean to bow? And is it the same as bowing to an adversary? A mountain? A meal? In this dharma encounter, Zuisei Sensei asks Ango participants to step forward and present their understanding or their questions about bowing. As you’ll hear, many of the exchanges are illuminating and might even challenge your own notions about faith, identification, and gratitude.

Humility and Vulnerability

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YukonMichael Yukon Grody, Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 10/28/2018

 

Master Ma Is Unwell

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Book of Equanimity, Case #36

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/27/2018

Pilgrimage

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/26/2018

 

As part of our sangha finishes a three-week pilgrimage in India, Zuisei Sensei draws on the life of the Buddha to evoke the six stages of pilgrimage as they manifest in our own practice.

Body Wisdom: the Miracle of Aliveness

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Michael Chizen Brown, Senior Lay Practitioner

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/25/2018

 

Chizen. a senior lay practitioner in the Mountains and Rivers Order, reminds us that we are neither separate from our own bodies nor from the great earth itself.

The Inner Tyrant

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/25/2018

 

“Take care of your mind”, Gokan urges in this talk, encouraging us to treat the voice of our insecurities with kindness.

Cynicism and Warmth

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Judy Lief

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/21/2018

 

Judy Lief, a teacher in the Shambhala lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, concludes a retreat on the lojong slogans by speaking about the importance of a tender heart in practice and in action.

Fusatsu: On Taking the Precepts and Living the Precepts

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 10/21/2018

 

In this talk, given on the occassion of a fusatsu ceremony, Hogen Sensei addresses the vows we renew, and what it means to take them up. The bodhisattva precepts, he points out, are at the heart of Zen practice and our common understanding of how to live an awakened life.

Buddha as Robber, Teacher as Thief: Mondo on the Jataka Tales

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 10/18/2018

 

In the second of three sessions looking at the Jataka Tales, Hogen Sensei leads a group study of one of the Buddha’s past lives in which, oddly enough, he was the leader of a gang. What can learn from this tale about our own choices in life? What can we learn about the long road of karma?

Mondo on the Jataka Tales

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/17/2018

 

Zuisei Sensei leads an in-depth examination of selected Jataka Tales, stories of the Buddha’s previous lives. The discussion touches on the role of female characters, the workings of karma, and the power of religious narrative.

The Soto Zen Buddhist Association at ZMM

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In September, Zen Mountain Monastery hosted the biannual conference of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association for three full days of practice, discussion and exploration. Close to 70 ordained priests and transmitted teachers joined the conference, representing dozens of training centers and sitting groups throughout North America. Following the conference, we spoke with Tenku Ruff who serves as the president of the SZBA Board of Directors and was very involved in the organization of the event. CLICK HERE to see photos from the conference. Continue reading “The Soto Zen Buddhist Association at ZMM” »

Dare To Ask: Zhao-Zhou Saw Through The Old Woman

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

The Gateless Gate, Case #31

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/14/2018

“Better to fall than to stand still with weeds growing around our feet.” Zuisei Sensei urges us to ask true, deeply felt questions with courage, honesty, and faith.

Rivers and the Sea

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 10/13/2018

Sacred Space

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/12/2018

 

In this talk, given during a renewal of vows ceremony, Zuisei Sensei speaks of the fierce tenderness required to create a sacred space that will hold our practice, our atonement, and our vows.

Chao-Chou Can’t Explain

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The Blue Cliff Record, Case 58

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/07/2018

Shugen Roshi unfolds the appearance of division and its root, within us and our nation at this time.

This Ruined House

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Patrick Yunen Kelly

Zen Center of New York City, 10/7/2018

 

Mondo on Buddha Ancestors

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/4/2018

 

Shugen Roshi leads a discussion of the recorded lives and past lives of the Buddha’s first disciples, touching on the nature of religious narrative, Buddhist philosophies of karma and rebirth, and the importance of studying the ancestors.

Unfortunately, a few minutes of this talk could not be recorded due to technical difficulties.

Dharma Encounter

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/30/2018

 

In a moment which so urgently demands that we step forward to alleviate the suffering of the world, where do we take refuge? Where do we find the ground from which to act justly and with compassion in difficult moments? Shugen Roshi invites the sangha to present their understanding.

The Master’s Portrait

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koan Shobogenzo, Case #25

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/29/2018

What does it mean to bow to the Buddha, to the mountain, to our teachers? Shugen Roshi speaks of a kind of veneration that allows us to be earnest in asking for the teachings while maintaining deep faith in our own enlightened nature.

Zuigan Calls “Master!”

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

The Gateless Gate, Case #12

Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/28/2018

Vividly evoking the ‘village’ of personas we each contain, Hogen Sensei urges us to acknowledge and learn from our multiple identities without mistaking them for a fixed self.

Great Ancestor Mugai Nyodai: Broken Open

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 09/26/2018

 

Hojin Sensei uses the life and enlightenment poems of Mugai Nyodai Daiosho, the first female Zen master in Japan, to explore keeping it together and falling apart in practice.

Yaoshan’s Non-Thinking

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koan Shobogenzo, Case #129

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/26/2018

Shugen Roshi speaks about the karmic patterns of the mind as they arise in zazen and the need to find a middle way between suppressing thought and being swept away by it.

Buddha Ancestors

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

From Master Dogen’s Fascicle “Buddha Ancestors”

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/23/2018

Like and Dislike

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 9/23/18

 

The Great Love of Buddhas and Ancestors

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery 9/16/2018

At the conclusion to this year’s Wild Grasses Sesshin, a meditation intensive for those who identify as women, Hojin Sensei and Zuisei Sensei investigate the roles we assign our ancestors, both personal and spiritual. Are we making the best use of them? Are they making the best use of us?

Mondo on Jataka Tales

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 9/16/2018

Iron Grindstone Liu: Always in the Same Place

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Blue Cliff Record, Case #24

Zen Mountain Monastery, 09/15/2018

Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Transmission of the Light, Case 27

 Zen Center of New York City, 9/15/2018

Prajna Paramita

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 09/14/2018

 

Mondo on Ango

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 Konjin Gaelyn Godwin, Roshi

Zen Center of New York City, 9/13/2018

Mondo on the Therigatha

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 09/12/2018

 

Hojin Sensei leads a large study group through an introduction and overview to the Therigatha, a collection of poems by early female monastics and practitioners, many of whom were students of the Buddha himself. Hojin Sensei ends the discussion by chanting one of the poems.

Hsi-chung Makes Carts

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The Gateless Gate, Case 8

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/09/2018

Fall Ango Opening 2018 ZCNYC

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 9/09/2018

 

 

This talk was given at the opening of the current ango training period.

Fall Ango Opening 2018 ZMM

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 9/2/2018

This talk was given at the opening of the current ango training period. Shugen Roshi addresses the theme of the ango, and questions how we can best honor our lineages, knowing that the manners of the past can sometimes clash with our own values of equality and inclusivity.

Check out the audio above or watch a video of this talk below.

With apologies, the video image cuts out during the last couple minutes of the talk. The audio, however, remains consistent through the conclusion.

The Teaching That’s Never Been Taught

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

The Gateless Gate: Nansen’s Not Mind, Not Buddha, Not Things, Case 27

 Zen Center of New York City, 9/02/2018

Xuefeng’s Rice Field

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 149

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/26/2018

Chasing the Bear

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 8/26/2018

 

Mysticism

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 08/25/2018

Drawing on her time at a mountain lake, Zuisei Sensei talks about that which is beyond ordinary knowing and must be known intimately. As she puts it, devoting our full attention to an object — the breath, a koan — can be an act of love. Zazen itself is that act of love, an act rewarded in ways we cannot predict.

Xuansha Builds a Seamless Monument

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 163

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/24/2018

Waters, Mountains, Buddha

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ShoanDanica Shoan Ankele, Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 08/23/2018

 

Refrain from Unwholesome Action

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

From Master Dogen’s Shobogenzo
The Fascicle “Refrain from Unwholesome Action”

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/22/2018

Resilience

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

From the Record of Master Dongshan

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/19/2018

Holding our Strong Emotions in a Tender Embrace

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Jeanne Seisen Lewis, Senior Lay Student

Zen Center of New York City, 08/19/2018

 

It Matters What You Do With Your Mind

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/12/2018

 

Why Do We Meditate?

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YukonMichael Yukon Grody, Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 8/12/2018

 

Linji’s “True Person of No Rank”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 147

Zen Mountain Monastery, 8/05/2018

Mind at Ease- Part II

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 8/5/2018

 

Mind at Ease- Part I

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Centre of New York City, 8/4/2018

 

Manjushri’s “Three Three”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 127

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/29/2018

Great Determination

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/28/2018

 

Coming Into the Country

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ShoanDanica Shoan Ankele, Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 07/27/2018

Opening Our Eyes to Ordinary Life

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Susan Seien Wilder, Lay Senior

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/26/2018

Return to the Source

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 07/25/2018

Balanced Mind

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 07/22/2018

The Stone Lion

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 7/22/2018

Margaret Gibson at the Buddhist Poetry Festival

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Margaret Gibson in conversation with Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/6/2018

Over the course of four decades, Margaret Gibson has amassed a body of work as rich and varied as it is consistent in aspiration. One reads a poem by Margaret Gibson and comes away having shared in the yearning to see deeply, often exploring how seeing through another’s eyes can expand our sense of self. Continue reading “Margaret Gibson at the Buddhist Poetry Festival” »

Great Doubt

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Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/15/2018

 

The Path of Liberation Starts Here

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 7/15/2018

Why Zazen?

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Center of New York City, 7/14/2018

video: Dongshan’s “No Grass”

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On Sunday, July 8, The Buddhist Poetry Festival at Zen Mountain Monastery concluded with a talk by Shugen Roshi. The koan case referenced in the talk is Dongshan’s “No Grass” from the Book of Serenity.

Find out more about the festival by visiting BuddhistPoetryFestival.org

Dongshan’s “No Grass”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Book of Serenity, Case 89

This talk was given at the conclusion of the Buddhist Poetry Festival.

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/08/2018

Samsara Can Always Be Practised

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Jeanne Seisen Lewis, Senior Lay Student

Zen Center of New York City, 07/08/2018

 

Xiangyan’s “Person Up a Tree”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 243

Zen Mountain Monastery, 7/01/2018

The Lifeline of Zazen

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ShoanDanica Shoan Ankele, Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 07/01/2018

Master Ma is Unwell – Part II

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Blue Cliff Record, Case 3

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/24/2018

To See Takes Time

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 6/24/2018

 

Great Faith

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/23/2018

 

Samadhi and Prajna – Part II

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/22/2018

 

Seeing and Silence

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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 6/21/2018

 

Samadhi and Prajna – Part I

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/20/2018

 

Master Ma is Unwell – Part I

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Blue Cliff Record, Case 3

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/17/2018

The Moment

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

 Zen Centre of New York City, 6/17/2018

 

Rujing

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Transmission of the Light, Case 51

 Zen Centre of New York City, 6/10/2018

Ordinary Mind is the Way

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Gateless Gate, Case 19

 Zen Centre of New York City, 6/9/2018

Chao-chou says “Wash Your Bowls”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The Gateless Gate, Case 7

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/3/2018

 

Dragon Life

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 06/03/2018

 

Shuso Hossen Ceremony

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Robert Rakusan Moshin Ricci, Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 05/27/2018

From The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Collection of Three Hundred Koans, Case 169: Mahakasyapa and the Flagpole

Friendship

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YukonMichael Yukon Grody, Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 5/27/2018

 

Dongshan’s “Teachings of the Insentient”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The True Dharma Eye: Master Dogen’s Three Hundred Koans (Shinji Shobogenzo), Case 148

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/26/2018

 

Two Monks Roll Up the Blinds

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Vanessa Zuisei Goddard, Sensei

The Gateless Gate, Case 26

Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/25/2018

Caoshan’s “Reality Body”

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Book of Serenity, Case 52

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/24/2018

Trusting Mind

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 05/20/2018

 

Our Current Societal Challenges

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Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi

This is a follow up on Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi’s retreat on Social and Communal Harmony

Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/20/2018

Jukai: May 2018

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/13/2018

 

Loving Speech

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 05/13/2018

 

Fusatsu: May 2018 ZMM

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/11/2018

 

Fusatsu: May 2018 ZCNYC

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 05/11/2018

Bodhidharma’s “Peace of Mind”

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

The Gateless Gate, Case 41

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 5/06/2018

 

Return To Cold Mountain

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei

Zen Center of New York City, 5/6/2018