Other MRO Teachings

Vulnerable Buddha

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Vulnerable Buddha
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Danica Shoan Ankele, Senior Monastic and Dharma Holder

Zen Mountain Monastery, Sunday 10/10/2021

In allowing ourselves to be uncomfortable, in experiencing the discomfort of whatever is binding us, we touch our aliveness and see into our true nature. Mn. Shoan talks about vulnerability as a path of liberation.

 

Studying Karma by Paying Attention to Ourselves

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Studying Karma by Paying Attention to Ourselves
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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, Thursday 09/23/2021

“Begin with the Body.” Gokan suggests that studying the vital, but seemingly esoteric, subject of karma –  i.e. examining and understanding the karma of our life – requires our full attention on basic, everyday activities, and talks about how helpful “The Four Foundations of Mindfulness” can be in that regard.

An Empty Heart Full of Love

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
An Empty Heart Full of Love
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Danica Shoan Ankele, Senior Monastic and Dharma Holder

Zen Mountain Monastery, Friday 08/27/2021

In this clear talk from Hazy Moon Sesshin, dharma holder Shoan Ankele focuses on how we can use the very struggles and suffering in our everyday life to help free ourselves and discover our heart full of love.

 

 

A Life Of No Regrets

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
A Life Of No Regrets
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Chris Yudo Abraham, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery, Thursday  08/26/2021

From Milarepa: “This path leads to a Life of no Regrets.”

Appreciate our lives? It seems simple at first but when we study our experience closely, we realize that’s difficult. What should we do when it looks like everything is going wrong in our life? The first step is to open up and feel what we really feel.

 

Compassion Embodied

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Compassion Embodied
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Susan Seien Wilder, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery, Wednesday 08/26/2021

On the Sutra of Great Compassion.

Seien begins her heartfelt talk by inviting the Sangha to chant the Sutra of Great Compassion together. She goes on to ask who are we invoking? Who is Kanzeon? Who could it be but ourselves?

 

 

Practicing Patience

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Practicing Patience
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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, Sunday 8/22/2021

In our life, we experience not getting what we want, getting what we don’t want, so we try to change things immediately – fueling our suffering. Can we hold our hearts still in the presence of our impatience? Can we make ourselves larger, more inclusive, to live beyond our discontent?

Renunciation

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Renunciation
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Rev. Chimyo Simone Atkinson

Zen Center of New York City, 08/15/21

What does renunciation mean in our culture? How does it relate or differ to Western Christian notions of leaving the world? This talk by guest teacher Rev. Chimyo Simone Atkinson exploration of the sameness and difference that underlies lay and monastic paths.

Chimyo Simone Atkinson was ordained a priest in the Soto Zen Buddhist tradition in 2007. She received her monastic training at Great Tree Zen Women’s Temple in North Carolina where she also served for a number of years as Head of Training and received Dharma Transmission in 2015 from Rev. Teijo Munnich.

Rev. Chimyo completed Sotoshu International training periods (Ango) in Japan in 2010 and 2011. She also completed training periods at the Aichi Senmon Nisodo in Nagoya in 2012 and Ryumonji Monastery in Iowa in 2014. She has been serving on the board of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association since 2017 and helped to draft that organization’s standards for formal monastic practice. She is a member of the Association of Soto Zen Buddhists Jukai-e committee and an SZBA liaison to that organization’s Roadmap Committee.

Searching for the Ox

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Searching for the Ox
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Patrick Yunen Kelly, Senior Lay Student

Zen Center of New York City, 07/25/2021

Yunen talks about the first stage of the Zen practice, “Searching for the Ox”. He invites practitioners to contemplate the question, “What am I searching for?” He emphasizes the importance of setting intention.

 

The Interdependence of Squabbling Squashes

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Interdependence of Squabbling Squashes
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Shohaku Okumura, Roshi

via Zoom, Zen Mountain Monastery, Sunday 07/18/21

Following a weekend retreat offered to the Mountains and Rivers Order sangha, renowned author and Dogen scholar Shohaku Okumura delivered this Sunday dharma discourse. He begins by talking about Opening the Hand of Thought, a beloved book by his late teacher Kosho Uchiyama, which Okumura Roshi translated into English. One story recounted in that book has now been made into a children’s book called Squabbling Squashes. (Both are available from Wisdom Publications.)

Shohaku Okumura brings to us the unique perspective of the practitioner-scholar.  Born in Osaka, Japan, he studied Zen Buddhism and was ordained by Uchiyama Roshi in 1970. Having taught in the west now for 30 years, he is the founder and guiding teacher of Sanshin Zen Community, an international Buddhist sangha, based in Bloomington, Indiana. His writing and translations include Living by Vow, Realizing Genjokoan, Dogen’s Extensive Record, and many others.

You can find out more about his work and extensive translations and commentary at SANSHINJI.org and the Dogen Institute.

 

 

Adventitous Defilements

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Adventitous Defilements
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Bear Gokan Bonebakker, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 07/04/2021

From a Diamond Sutra Commentary: “Consider the tree outside the door. Although it serves as a resting place for birds, it doesn’t make an effort to call those that come, nor does it care whether those that leave return. When a person’s mind is like the trees they no longer oppose the way.”

 

Confusion and Recognition

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Confusion and Recognition
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Danica Shoan Ankele, Senior Monastic and Dharma Holder

Zen Mountain Monastery, Friday 06/25/2021

In this illuminating and imaginative talk from Summer Solstice Sesshin, dharma holder Shoan Ankele emphasizes the cultivation of natural clarity, or rather, a recognition of our natural state. The point of zazen, she suggests, is “to create a conducive container for this recognition to occur.” This natural state is our buddha nature, the factuality of non-separation with everything and everyone. To illustrate the absurdity of our confused self-orientation, Shoan spins a memorable fable with what she calls a Buddhist faux-creation myth.

 

Don’t Know

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Don't Know
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Rev. Chimyo Simone Atkinson

Zen Mountain Monastery, 06/20/21

Book of Serenity Case 2: “Emperor Wu Asked The Great Teacher Bodhidharma”

In this heart-opening Dharma talk, Chimyo Sensei recounts her time practicing in Japan. She speaks about the experience of truly not knowing and practicing just that. She also encourages us to stay in this state of not knowing.

Chimyo Simone Atkinson was ordained a priest in the Soto Zen Buddhist tradition in 2007. She received her monastic training at Great Tree Zen Women’s Temple in North Carolina where she also served for a number of years as Head of Training and received Dharma Transmission in 2015 from Rev. Teijo Munnich.

Rev. Chimyo completed Sotoshu International training periods (Ango) in Japan in 2010 and 2011. She also completed training periods at the Aichi Senmon Nisodo in Nagoya in 2012 and Ryumonji Monastery in Iowa in 2014. She has been serving on the board of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association since 2017 and helped to draft that organization’s standards for formal monastic practice. She is a member of the Association of Soto Zen Buddhists Jukai-e committee and an SZBA liaison to that organization’s Roadmap Committee.

Monastic Ordination for Yusen Taikyo Gilman and Josen Hokyu Aronson

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Monastic Ordination for Yusen Taikyo Gilman and Josen Hokyu Aronson
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 Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi

Zen Mountain Monastery, 6/6/2021

On June 6th, the Monastery held the first double monastic ordination in our 40+ year history. Shugen Roshi officiated this shukke tokudo ceremony for Suzanne Taikyo Gilman and Hokyu JL Aronson. Tokudo marks the formal taking of monastic vows and, in our tradition, expresses a lifetime commitment to the Monastery. Taikyo was given the monastic name Yusen, meaning Courageous & Devoted River, and Hokyu was given the monastic name Josen, which Shugen Roshi translated as Humble Mystic.

 

Shuso Hossen: Linda Shinji Hoffman

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Shuso Hossen: Linda Shinji Hoffman
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Linda Shinji Hoffman, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery, 05/30/2021

True Dharma Eye, case #199 – Dongshan’s Essential Path

On May 30th, we concluded our Spring 90-day ango training period with this Shuso Hossen ceremony. Shuso Hossen means “chief disciple (or, literally, ‘head seat’) dharma encounter.” It is a centuries-old tradition that empowers a Zen student to represent the teachings and help guide other students in their own cultivation. In this case, Linda Shinji Hoffman completed her training in this role by offering her first public talk to the sangha in which she presented her understanding of a koan from the collection found in the teachings of Eihei Dogen. Read more

Faith In Bodhicitta

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Faith In Bodhicitta
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Katie Yosha Scott-Childress, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery, 05/28/2021

Exploring verses from the Mahayana Sutralamkara, Senior lay student Yosha shares the inspiration she receives from these explicit teachings on compassion and faith.

 

Who Can Say the Word Love?

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Who Can Say the Word Love?
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Prabu Gikon Vasan, Senior Lay Practitioner

Zen Mountain Monastery, 05/26/2021

Making a connection between Master Dogen’s “Ten Directions” fascicle and lines from a number of contemporary poets, Gikon points out that they speak about the hardships we experience while urging us to use it all for healing.

Investigating Wonder

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Investigating Wonder
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Danica Shoan Ankele, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 04/23/2021

Drawing inspiration from Master Hongzhi’s teachings “Cultivating the Empty Field”, Monastic Shoan invites us to tap into our innate sense of wonder and investigate the fundamental questions: Who is this I? Who am I? What is impermanence?  And so, how do we actually soften our fixations on reified reality and let go? We can begin by resting in wonder. For starters, the world is burning AND the springtime is glorious.

All is Burning

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
All is Burning
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Patrick Yunen Kelly, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery (Via Zoom), 04/22/2021

Bringing forth the Fire Sermon Discourse, one of the Buddha’s earliest teachings, Yunen asks us to investigate the sources of our suffering: Why do we suffer? What is this fire we live in? Is it possible that we have something to do with this suffering?

 

This Dharma is for You

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
This Dharma is for You
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Danica Shoan Ankele, Senior Monastic

Zen Mountain Monastery, 3/26/2021

Through the teachings of Buddhist ancestors from different schools of Buddhism, monastic Shoan invokes Bodhidharma, Prajnatara and Dogen Zenji, and explores how we understand that realization is an experience—a direct pointing to the human mind—aligned with the sutras and teachings but not limited by our ideas about them.

Never Disparaging Bodhisattva

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The Zen Mountain Monastery Podcast
Never Disparaging Bodhisattva
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Patrick Yunen Kelly, Senior Lay Student

Zen Mountain Monastery (Via Zoom), 01/27/2021

Senior lay student Yunen brings forth the beloved Lotus Sutra and the Precepts to dive into the powerful practice of non-disparaging. Pointing to his own direct experience, Yunen highlights how talking poorly of others will often be turnaround on ourselves, by ourselves. Realizing this, we can use the ancient practices passed down through the teachings to help us grow in wisdom and compassion.