ACCEPTANCE without ACCEPTANCE
I'm Jundo "Jimbo" Cohen. Hi. I have been a silent reader for a long time of what goes on here. Usually, very interesting. I already know many or most of you from other places such as Nishijima Roshi's blog.
You know, Dogen Sangha is something like the "Island of Misfit Toys" (for those who remember the old Rudolf the Reindeer animation they showed each year ... the one with Burl Ives as the snowman). Nishijima (another sweet old guy, not unlike Burl Ives) is someone who has given refuge to a lot of serious Zen folks who couldn't find a home in stuffy ol' Soto-shu. I mean, I was not one for funerals, gold statures, fancy hats and other farting around. I just wanted to sit Zazen. I was a teacher of law, and thought at some point, I could teach a little Zen (and I think my students can do worse than me). So, I found Nishijima and he found me several years ago.
Frankly, "misfit" might mean a bit too "misfit" in some cases. I am sorry for the troubles the arise in some quarters from time to time ... but I know that it keeps you guys amused. Some of our toys have their mainsprings wound a bit too tight perhaps ...
Well, anyway, I'm crazy too, as a loon ... but I always like to think "crazy in a constructive way." My latest crazy construction, I would like to take this opportunity to introduce to you ...
I have made a vow to sit Zazen online, every day (rain of shine) for the next 9 years. It is and will be netcast from wherever life takes me, on happy days and sad, no difference. It is part of a project by me to create an online resource, a Sangha (Island of Misfit Toys?) for people who cannot easily commute to a Zen group. Some have serious health concerns, some are elderly and do not drive, some live in remote areas, or just have to stay home to take care of their kids or other family members. Each has been cut off from participation in a Sangha on a regular basis. Now, by 'tuning in' to our 'Daily Zazen' broadcast, they can join in a Soto Zen sitting and Sangha.
So far, we have people sitting along with the netcast in the US, UK, various places in Europe, Hong Kong, Japan and Australia.
And I would invite you to look at it too ... except that the video provider is still in Beta, and has shut down for the day. So, please have a look tomorrow. Like I said, I will be there every day, whatever comes ...
In the meantime, I posted on the blog a short essay and video talk, and I wonder if you would take a look and give any thoughts you have. It is a Zen Buddhist perspective on war and violence, poverty, hunger, disease and general world-suckiness. I call it "Acceptance without Acceptance." I was working on it before the shooting this week in Virginia (and the 5x that number of people who died in Iraq the same day, and however many other people just got shot in liquor store robberies or whatever this week). But, it is appropriate to the subject.
I also hope that you will allow me to drop my two cents on your flappin' posts from time to time.
PS - Oh, and please feel free to download our nifty Mp3 Zen timers from the homepage ...