For the chants of any given week, see: BoWZ Westchester Chant Schedule
Schedule for ReadingSat May 18
Primary Reading: Koun Yamada, Zen: The Authentic Gate, Ch. 14-15, "Three Necessary Conditions for Zen Practice," and "Zen Practice for People of Other Religions," pp. 169-175.
Optional Secondary Reading: Thich Nhat Hanh, Old Path White Clouds, Ch. 43, "Everyone's Tears are Salty," p. 278.
Sat May 25
Primary Reading: Koun Yamada, Zen: The Authentic Gate, Ch. 16, "The Actual Practice of Zazen," pp. 177-186.
Optional Secondary Reading: Thich Nhat Hanh, Old Path White Clouds, Ch. 44, "The Elements Will Recombine," p. 285.
Sat Jun 1
Primary Reading: Koun Yamada, Zen: The Authentic Gate, Ch. 17. "Practical Matters," pp. 187-199.
Optional Secondary Reading: Thich Nhat Hanh, Old Path White Clouds, Ch. 45, "Opening the Door," p. 293.
Recommended Introductory Reading
1. Aitken, Robert. Taking the Path of Zen.
2. Batchelor, Martine. Way of Zen.
3. Maezumi and Glassman. On Zen Practice: Body, Breath, and Mind.
4. Kapleau, Philip, ed. Three Pillars of Zen.
5. Beck, Charlotte Joko. Everyday Zen.
6. Suzuki, Shunryu, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind.
7. Kosho Uchiyama, Opening the Hand of Thought.
8. Thich Nhat Hanh, The Heart of Buddha's Teaching and Old Path, White Cloud.
Key Ancient Texts1. The Diamond Sutra (trans. with commentary by Red Pine. See also: trans. with commentary by Thich Nhat Hanh as The Diamond That Cuts Through Illusion.)
2. Vimalakirti Sutra, trans. Burton Watson.
3. Lankavatara Sutra, trans. Red Pine.
4. Surangama Sutra, trans. Buddhist Text Translation Society.
5. The Zen Teachings of Bodhidharma, trans. Red Pine.
6. The Platform Sutra of Huineng, trans. Red Pine.
7. The Zen Teaching of Huang-Po: On the Transmission of Mind, trans. John Blofeld.
8. The Record of Linji, trans. Jeffrey Broughton
9. The Recorded Sayings of Zen Master Joshu [Zhaozhou], trans. James Green.
10. Moon in a Dewdrop: Writings of Zen Master Dogen.
1. Loori, John Daido. The Heart of Being: Moral and Ethical Teachings of Zen Buddhism.
2. Aitken, Robert. The Mind of Clover: Essays in Zen Buddhist Ethics.
3. Anderson, Reb. Being Upright: Zen Meditation and the Bodhisattva Precepts.
4. Rizzetto, Diane Eshin. Waking Up to What You Do: A Zen Practice for Meeting Every Situation with Intelligence and Compassion.
5. Glassman, Bernie. Infinite Circle: Teachings in Zen.
Koan CollectionsGateless Gate -- a.k.a. Wumenguan (Chinese, Pinyin), Wu-men-kuan (Chinese, Wade-Giles), Mumonkan (Japanese)
Blue Cliff Record -- a.k.a. Biyan Lu (Chinese, Pinyin), Pi-yen Lu (Chinese, Wade-Giles), Hekiganroku (Japanese)
Book of Serenity -- a.k.a. Book of Equanimity, Congrong Lu (Chinese, Pinyin), Ts'ung-jung Lu (Chinese, Wade-Giles), Shoyoroku (Japanese)
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Josh Bartok's reading recommendations: CLICK HERE.
Four brief, informative videos:
- How to do Zazen (seated meditation) (from AOL) -- 6:33.
- How to do Zazen (from SotoZenNet) -- 7:01.
- The Fundamentals of Zen teaching -- 9:14.
- The Fruits of Zen -- 9:32.
"Zen" means meditation, and "Za" means seated.
2. HOW TO DO ZAZEN (from Soto Zen Net)
"The truth of our life is that we are alive here now. In Zen teachings, the truth of our life is called the original self. The practice which manifests original self is zazen."
3. THE FUNDAMENTALS OF ZEN
Helen Cortes, assistant teacher at Maria Kannon Zen Center in Dallas, narrates this unpacking of fundamentals for Zen practice.
1. Posture: Be fully grounded, back straight. When you're sitting straight, you can breathe rightly and bring the mind to stillness. Postures include: full lotus, half lotus, quarter lotus, Burmese posture, bench, kneeling on cushions, chair. Hands: Left on top of right, thumbs lightly touching. Eyes: Half-open, half-closed. Breath: Count the exhales silently, up to 10.
2. Stilling of the mind: The monkey mind never stops. See yourself as a mountain with thoughts as clouds.
3. Kinhin (walking meditation).
4. Sit every day.
4. THE THREE FRUITS OF ZEN
The lead teacher of Maria Kannon Zen Center, Roshi Ruben Habito, describes the three fruits of zen.
1. Concentration and presence. With expanded capacity for concentration emerges a way of life that comes from the center, living in the here and now. We no longer hanker after a past, nor a future, but are at home in here and now. We are attentive and respond with alertness and spontaneity.
2. Insight. The practice yields glimpses our true nature, that is, our non-separateness, our interconnection (interbeing) with the whole universe. We realize that we are one. We no longer feel anxious or insecure, but experience unconditional love from the whole universe.
3. Compassion. Our capacity to give back to others out of peace and love grows. Our life of quiet joy and peace is a life of compassion contributing to the well-being of the world.