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Dharma Talks, Events, Interviews & Other Media

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Awakening at the Heart

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Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/25/2019

From Master Hongzhi’s “Cultivating the Empty Field.”

Hojin Sensei delves into Hongzhi’s poetic dharma instructions for awakening, still fresh. This practice of inquiry reveals how we come to be, creating ‘self’ and all the places where we become dis-embodied. We can learn to move freely within the wholeness and illumination which is our awakening at heart, undivided, revealing to ourselves the ebb and flow of all phenomena.

Guidepost for the Hall of Pure Bliss

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/24/2019

From Master Hongzhi’s “Cultivating the Empty Field.”

These instructions for zazen can guide the practitioner—you, me, everyone and anyone—into the realm of constancy, purity, bliss and the self. But what is it to truly let go the narrative story lines, the reasoning and the endless explanations, just to “sit within the circle” free of discriminating consciousness, as Hongzhi asks? It is the self within all phenomena, not separate and apart, not at all separate from the world. “Deep existence is beyond forms,” says Hongzhi, and so within the form of this body and mind, Shugen Roshi encourages us to explore with an open heart and mind zazen instructions from a 12th century Zen master.

The World-Honored One Ascends the Teaching Seat

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei 

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/23/2019

True Dharma Eye, Case 141. The Buddha is expected to give a talk, but, shortly after taking the teacher’s seat, abruptly gets up and leaves. His attendant, Mahākāśyapa, claims the dharma has been expounded – that is, that the talk has been given. How can this be? Hogen Sensei explains the wisdom teaching – the just sitting – in the Buddha’s silence.

Coming Into Focus

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Robert Rakusan Ricci, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/20/2019

With the easy grace of a life-long poet, monastic Rakusan delves in to the instructions of the Buddha’s path—to calm the mind, open the heart—for the purpose of bringing reality in to focus. He looks at ways to awaken our energy, finding the inspiring ways we can “fill the dull corners” of our minds and light up our world.

Humility and Reverence

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Patrick Yunen Kelly, Senior Lay Student

Zen Center of New York City, 10/20/2019

 

Fall Ango 2019, Buddhist Studies, Session 3, Zen Mountain Monastery

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/17/2019

Please note –  the first two minutes of this audio is of variable quality.  

Ch’ing-yuan

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Transmission of Light, Case 35

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/13/2019

How am I doing, how do I measure up? This question plagues many, not just in Zen practice but in all areas of work, love and community. We define ourselves by how we measure ourselves against others. One teaching which defies this tendency to dualize are the Seven Factors of Awakening, a teaching of the Buddha which describes consecutive steps in deepening practice which are also somewhat circular, helping us along the way to release the struggle and truly engage our lives.

Mondo on the Second Noble Truth, ZCNYC

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Ron Hogen Green, Sensei 

Zen Center of New York City, 10/13/2019

In this question and answer session with sangha members, Hogen Sensei explores The Second Noble Truth—the cause of suffering is craving, or thirst.

Two Monastics Rolled Up the Bamboo Blinds

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Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Gateless Gate, Case 26

 Zen Mountain Monastery, 10/06/2019

Compassion is based in wisdom, but skillfulness is what makes it possible for students to receive the wise and compassionate teachings that may not be clear to our normal, discursive minds. Koans are a skillful means, such as in this story of monastics hearing “one has it, one has not,” bringing all doubt to bear on one moment in time, the place where you are.

The Persistent Illusion Of Time

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Yukon

Michael Yukon Grody, Senior Monastic

Zen Center of New York City, 10/06/2019

Seeking the Dharma is an unusual way to find peace and healing, but the Buddha was very clear that the Way is available in every moment and in every action, and with others we find support and guidance which we need to let ourselves be vulnerable. In this talk, monastic Yukon encourages us to take every opportunity to explore the nature of reality, and thereby how we can develop a true compassionate heart—not separating self, other, objects and the entire world.