ACZC Happenings, 1/20 - 1/26
“It includes everything. Even being depressed is part of it. That's why I don’t backslide like I used to anymore; because even if I do, I now know for certain that has weight and that's important too.” - Dave Cuomo
Ok, apologies for the crappy cartoon up there (you get us), but we had something a little fun to share with y’all today and that crow seemed like just the right messenger to tell you about it (even if we caught it at a bad time (though it seems a little unconcerned)). Our good sangha friend and ACZC band leader, Robert Holliday, who if you didn’t know is a fantastic composer alongside his buddhific bell ringing, has been collaborating with our caretaker, Dave Cuomo, on a little Zen poetry project. Dave reads us selections from the poetry of Ikkyu, our favorite wayward and wandering medieval monk with all his Buddhist blasphemies while Robert spins sounds and melodies around it for a full sonic experience. It will be posted up on all your favorite music streaming platforms later this week (look for Damnit Dave & Robert Dean Holliday), but we’ve got a sneak peek for you here if you want to take a listen. But! Mild warning, Ikkyu doesn’t hold back. This samadhi gets a little spicy…
And bonus! Robert will also be leading the discussion tomorrow (Saturday 1/20 - 10am) to talk about sound, sitting, and the music of silence with readings from the Surangama Sutra along side some modern experimental music that just might help prove whatever point that silence is trying to sing to us.
And as if that isn’t enough for a whirlwind weekend of wisdom, Saturday at 3pm (zoom only) Sara returns to lead us in book club as we dive back into Shundo Aoyam’s “Zen seeds.”
And then! Sunday at 5:30pm (in person only), the Gather Potluck returns to ACZC where we’re told Dave’s making some fresh milled wintery white wine and mushroom pasta. Join us for a little sangha social time!
But speaking of enlightening ways to spend your energies, this week on the podcast we are very pleased to bring you Effortless Efforts (Energy & Depression) w/ Dave Cuomo. Dave takes an honest look at energy, the much lauded and lamented fourth paramita, along with all the reasons such things might often feel out of reach. Is Buddhism trying to flatten us out or is there room for passion in our practice? How are we expected to lift ourselves up when all we feel is down? Do we need to have purpose to practice, and if so, where in all that goaless emptiness have they been hiding it?? Find out here!!
Up now at http://aczc.org/aczcpodcast or on all your favorite podcast platforms.
And hey, here’s a koan for the week:
Case in Point:
Nanquan said to the assembly, “All the Buddhas throughout space and time don’t understand their existence. House cats and cows understand their existence.”
This Week in Zen! All times posted in Pacific time zone, all sessions hosted in person and on Zoom unless otherwise marked (email us for quick and easy Zoom access info):
Saturday - 1/20, 10am - 12:30pm
Sit & Discussion w/ Robert Holliday - Our biggest day of the week! Two half hour rounds of zazen, one walking meditation in the middle, and then Robert takes the hot seat to share with us some sounds of silence singing. See y’all there.
Sunday - 1/21, 3pm - 4pm
Book Club - Join us for the latest installment of Sara’s leisurely literary bi-weekly Book Club, an informal gathering where we’ll be digging into Shundo Aoyama’s Zen Seeds: 60 Essential Buddhist Teachings on Effort, Gratitude, and Happiness. Join us!
Sunday - 1/21, 5:30pm - 8:30pm
”Gather” Potluck - Bring your favorite dish, or whichever one you like, and join us for a little sangha social time.
Monday Evening - 1/22, 7:30pm - 9pm
Sit & Discussion w/ Gyokei Yokoyama - One half hour of zazen, and then Gyokei returns to the hot seat fresh off his far flung travels. What news and encouragements does he have to share with us from the wider world of Zen? Let’s find out.
Wednesday - 1/23, 7:30pm - 9pm (Zoom Only)
Sit & Koan Discussion w/ Mota Myntinnen - Y’all, it might look short, but, no big deal, this week’s koan might just have been Dogen’s favorite koan that woke him up and sent him on the long trip to China. Can we follow in his footsteps? Can we hitch a ride on that cow? Do our cats know us better than we know ourselves?? Let’s discuss.
Thursday - 1/24 at 7pm - 8:30pm (Zoom Only)
Yoga & Zazen w/ Nina Snow - And Nina is back for one blissful hour of Slow Flow Zen Yoga to round out the evening and wind down our week, capped off with one half hour of sweet sweet zazen, before sending us off to bed for some (more than likely) sweet sweet dreams. We’ll see y’all there.
Friday Early - 1/25 at 5am-6am
Rise and shine y’all, it’s the season for a little zazen before our zazen. Especially a good opportunity for those who work early, or live in an earlier time zone. In person and on zoom! Same format as our usual morning sits - one simple hour of sitting with an optional five minute stretch break offered in the middle.
Friday - 1/25 at 8am
Chanting & Zen Breakfast - This week! We honor the ancestors and chant the Heart Sutra in classic Sino Sanskrit followed by the Dai Hai Shin Dharani. Poetry for the ages! And then stick around for ACZC’s fresh hot take on traditional Zen breakfast (house milled multi grain porridge! mmm…). A nutritious (and delicious) part of this complete practice. Let’s dig in.
Tuesday - Friday, 7am - 8am
Morning Sit - One simple hour of what we do best - just sitting. Optional five minute stretch break offered in the middle.
See y’all soon!