Dharma in September 2017

Dear Zen friend

1) October Sesshin: from 10/06 to 10/10.

November Sesshin: from 11/10 to 11/14.


2) I made a lot of apple sauce. Freezer is filled with cans. They are two kinds, red delicious and mackintosh.

3) We have study group on the third Sunday every month. I started the event thanks to Uchiyama Roshi’s suggestion. He said just sitting is not good enough, right understandings are must for a Buddhist.

Participants take turn to lead discussions. Since brain power is limitless, any topics and ideas are welcome. I have mainly presented the laws of cause and effect as Buddhist idea at the sessions.

The pattern recognition was also presented several times. We are able to recognize things as pattern. We see red or blue instantly, we know triangle or square at once. It sounds easy to function. Does a pattern need cognition theory to sense?

The laws of cause and effect contains a long chain of relationship of all things. Since the chain is long, a way of understanding tends to become variable. Each Buddhist school was established due to a specific cognition theory.

Cognition theory is boring and painful to study. I often lost patience to keep learning. Pattern recognition may not need a long chain of words.

I recently sent an essay to a popular blog. It was accepted as excellent. And it happened to be about pattern recognition in a totally different context. I am from a culture of a pattern recognition language.

Today was a day for mushroom hunt. Most of fungus are not seen nor known. Is it worth classifying millions of fungi by color, form, smell, location? To know all million kinds of fungi seems to be out of human power.

And mushrooms are too variable to exactly categorize them. It may be good enough to classify them by the patterns, edible or poisonous.

Eishin Ikeda
Valley Zendo

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