Dear Zen Friend
1) May Sesshin from 05/11 to 05/15
June Sesshin from 06/08 to 06/12
2) Baika Lesson 9 am on May 24th with Rev. Shumei Kojima
Dharma talk 11 am on May 24th by Rev. Ryugen Ogasawara
The schedule is subject to change. Please see the posting at valleyzendo.org, or email back, or phone call at (413)339-4000 for sure information.
3) It snowed at valley zendo in the morning of 30th of April.
Air was chill.
Air was chill.
I have not experienced a long winter like this.
Worldwide efforts to prevent global warming may have worked too well.
4) New movie about practice at Eiheiji by NHK was on youtube. It was filmed last autumn and winter, was reasonable and enjoyable. Narration was nice.
A big institution has many gates for people to take part in. Sotoshu began with strict zazen practice with the teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha and Dogen Zenji.
As time went on, some became seriously interested in sitting itself, some liked to study sutras. Some liked ceremonies, some liked buildings and arts. Some composed, some became poets, and some liked performance.
I used to think of one activity alone while I stayed there decades ago.
Now I enjoy various events.
Originally the area of Eiheiji was considered as being too harsh to live. To build a temple was a crazy idea. Now a road to the temple is open and 100 buses a day at a time bring visitors. It is one of the most popular tourist spots in Japan.
It snows 10 feet deep every winter. The temple covered with snow is a beauty. Snow also breaks hundreds of tiles on the roof. The replacement of damaged tiles is an important task. You see it if you go there.