The Theory of Nothing
ACZC Happenings, 4/1 - 4/7
“The fact that the word ‘emptiness’ is still upsetting people 2,500 years later tells me, that must be an important lesson. Clearly it’s something we needed to hear.” - Dave Cuomo
Well happy April everyone. No joke needed! We’re already over here on a never ending fool’s journey where it turns out an April fool is an eternal fool. Thanks for sharing the road is all we’re saying.
But speaking of only telling truths that still sometimes end up untrue, a quick retraction and correction - we’re postponing the advertised cleaning day and work party for tomorrow afternoon (Saturday 4/1) until a later date TBD. It’s a good idea for our well loved center, and a great way to engage in a little sangha bonding, but it’ll have to wait until a little later on. So, sorry for now, but things to look forward to later in the season!
But if that frees up your afternoon, tomorrow is the first Saturday of the month, which means it’s our biggest day of the month with a Half Day Sit starting at 10am. Join us for a full half day of Zen with zazen, a short chanting ceremony for our loved ones, a discussion with Dave (his last before going away!), a short break for lunch, and then two more rounds of glorious zazen. Whoa! As always feel free to join for as much or as little of the day as you’re able.
And speaking of a twisting history of time and space so free it couldn’t even confine itself to being, this week on the podcast we’re very pleased to present “The Theory of Nothing” (A Brief History of Emptiness) w/ Dave Cuomo.
Dave takes us on a walking tour of space with a slightly nerdy dive into the history of emptiness in Buddhism; what it meant when Buddha first said it, how that changed over time, what it means for us now, and how it can be a superpower for any tradition (or person) that knows how to walk it’s death defying tight rope by simply not seeing it as there in the first place. Did Buddha really mean to say everything is empty? And is that something we’re actually supposed to believe in literally? And what is Dave’s secret recipe for the beer float that can liberate all beings?? 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:
Once, when a monk came to see Fayan just before lunch, Fayan pointed at the window blind. Immediately, his two attendant monks ran to roll it up.
Fayan said, “A gain and a loss.”
This Week in Zen! All times are in Pacific time zone and all sessions are hosted in person and on Zoom unless otherwise marked (email us for quick and easy Zoom access info):
Saturday - 4/1 at 10am
Half Day Sit w/ Dave Cuomo - Our biggest day of the month - two half hour rounds of zazen, one walking meditation in the middle, a short Well Being Ceremony, a discussion with Dave, a brief break for lunch, and then two more rounds of sweet sweet zazen. As always come for as much or as little of the day as you like.
If anyone (who you know personally) is sick or otherwise in need of good health well wishes, you can add their names to the form you see here (bottom of the page) to include them in the Well Being Dedication.
Monday - 4/3 at 7:30pm
Sit & Talk w/ Leon Sandler - Who are you, who made you, and what were you before that?? Join us for one half hour of zazen and then Leon Sandler returns to the hot seat to help us try to figure out what exactly we are with some sage words from sangha favorite Shohaku Okumura, the Buddha himself, and maybe even a surprise cameo appearance from a legendary devil or two. Join us!
Wednesday - 4/5 at 7:30pm (Zoom Only)
Sit & Koan Discussion w/ Corey Warner - Fayan’s monks are as diligent as they are eager to please, but apparently they’re letting us down every time they succeed. Will we finally get the Zen scoop on why we can’t just have nice things?? Let’s find out.
Thursday - 4/6 at 7pm (Zoom Only)
Yoga & Zazen w/ Nina Snow - Nina brings the Thursday night sweet with one hour of restorative and relaxing yoga followed by one half hour of zazen to wind down our week and send us off contentedly into the stillness of the night. We’ll see y’all there.
Friday - 4/7 at 8am
Heart Sutra Chanting Service - This week! We chant the Heart Sutra in English, followed by that one in a billion needle of truth hidden in the haystack, the Zazenshin (Needle Point of Zazen). Poetry for the ages! Come on out and lend us your voice, it does a body good.
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!