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20111116

SUNDAY SERVICES


Zen Buddhism is non-theistic, so its emphasis is on realizing our Buddha Nature, the nature of the self.  Therefore, all of Zen's rituals point to the oneness of the self and the ten thousand things.  Zen liturgy is upaya,- skillful means.  Like meditation and all the areas of zen training, it functions as a way of uncovering the truth which is the life of each one of us.

Sunday Services begin at 10 a.m.  


Please arrive early enough to allow for parking and settling in to sit, as the short meditation begins at 10:00 a.m. sharp

NOTE SUMMER SCHEDULE:   We will be meeting every second Sunday, until early September, on the following dates.

July 13 and 27
August 10 and 24
Weekly schedule will begin again on September 14.




DHARMA TALKS 

June 29:  NO DHARMA TALK TODAY
July 6:     BIG BUTS
July 13:   ADDICTION TO SELF-IMPROVEMENT
July 27:   EIGHTFOLD PATH MEANS WHAT?

  


    Everyone is welcome.  (Registration is not required)



    ATTIRE

    Wear loose, clean clothing, something that is comfortable and allows you to stretch. Sweat pants and shirt are fine. Avoid bright colours. Shirts with logos and writing can be distracting to a quiet, peaceful atmosphere. Warm socks are a good idea in the winter, as you will be asked to remove your shoes at the door. Perfume and jewellery are not worn in the meditation room.

    REFUGE AND PRECEPT RECITATION




    Recitation of the 5 Precepts and Bodhisattva Precepts will take place on the Thursday closest to the Full Moon, before Members' Sitting, unless otherwise noted. If you have taken Refuge and the 5 Precepts, in any tradition, please join us on the following dates.


    January 16
    February 13
    March 13
    April 17
    Sunday, May 25 (During Wesak Ceremony)
    June 12
    July 10
    August 7
    September 11
    October 9
    November 6
    December 4

    MEMBERS SESSHIN WITH DOKUSAN

    BELL GATHA, YEBUL, and SITTING AND WALKING MEDITATION

    DOKUSAN
    DATES

    January 23
    February 27
    March 27
    May 1 & 29
    June 26
    July 24
                                        July 31
                                      August 28
                                      September 25
                                       October 23
                                      November 20
                                       December 18


    Thursday evenings at 7 p.m.






    Experienced meditators are welcome to attend.

    Please confirm attendance 24 hours in advance.



    REGISTRATION & DANA

    Registration is required for all programmes, except Sunday morning sesshins. Please email to the address indicated in the programme outline on this site, with the following information.


    1. Register by clicking on Contact button in red strip at bottom of screen. (one registration per Contact).
    2. Full Name (Dharma name if you have taken Refuge)
    3. Address, including postal code
    4. Day & Evening telephone numbers
    5. Email address
    6. The programme in which you are interested, including dates.


    Space is limited ... register early! Registrations must be received no later than 5 days before the intended programme.


    Your registration will be confirmed by email.

    DANA

    *Dana, or generosity, is a lovely tradition in Buddhism that allows students the chance to convey their appreciation for Buddhist teachings by assisting the Sangha. A gift of Dana comes from our heart and is suitable to the circumstances. Each gift is valued and every practitioner appreciated.

    Your Dana help a lot. All Dana is suggested only. There is no wish to deprive anyone of the opportunity to attend a workshop or other sessions because of financial inability.  Place Dana in an envelope and hand it directly to the teacher. 

    FLOWER SUTRA




    Toward the end of his life, the Buddha took his disciples to a quiet pond for instruction. As they had done so many times before, the Buddha’s followers sat in a small circle around him, and waited for the teaching.
    But this time the Buddha had no words. He reached into the muck and pulled up a lotus flower. And he held it silently before them, its roots dripping mud and water.


    The disciples were greatly confused. Buddha quietly displayed the lotus to each of them. In turn, the disciples did their best to expound upon the meaning of the flower: what it symbollized, and how it fit into the body of Buddha’s teaching.


    When at last the Buddha came to his follower Mahakasyapa, the disciple suddenly understood. He smiled and began to laugh. Buddha handed the lotus to Mahakasyapa and began to speak.


    “What can be said I have said to you,” smiled the Buddha, “and what cannot be said, I have given to Mahakashyapa.”
    Mahakashyapa became Buddha’s successor from that day forward.


    The Flower Sutra is a sutra in the Zen (or Chan) tradition of Mahayana Buddhism. It's earliest versions date from the 11th century. Zen Buddhism stresses wordless insight more than most other types of Buddhism. This sutra exemplifies that very well.
    In many versions of this sutra the Buddha doesn't walk around, he merely holds up the Lotus, roots and all, to a group of disciples. Most disciples are confused.


    Mahakashyapa smiles.


    To Zen Buddhists this sutra shows the origins of the wordless teachings of Zen - its history started with the Buddha himself.

    OFF-SITE TEACHINGS AND TALKS





    AUGUST, 2014 - RETREAT OF AWAKENING - AUSTEN, TEXAS

    Information:  http://www.retreatofawakening.org/

    20111011

    DHARMA TEACHER TRAINING PROGRAMME




    The Dharma Teacher Training Programme is an opportunity to deepen your commitment to your practice and your vow to help others.  You will be encouraged to widen your focus from being largely a questioner and receiver, to being able to guide, inspire and teach others.  During this training period your relationship to your teacher and Centre will have the opportunity to mature.

    Prerequisites:

    You have taken the Five Precepts.  If you took the Five Precepts in another tradition, before taking the Dharma Teacher Training Programme, you must retake the precepts in the Little Heron Zen Hermitage.  Precepts will be given in May, 2014.

    Contact Su co Tinh Quang for an information package.

    20111001

    HSIN HSIN MING

    Verses on the Faith Mind by The 3rd Zen Patriarch, Seng-ts'an

    The Great Way is not difficult for those who have no preferences.
    When love and hate are both absent everything becomes clear and undisguised.
    Make the smallest distinction, however, and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart.
    If you wish to see the truth then hold no opinions for or against anything.
    To set up what you like against what you dislike is the disease of the mind.
    When the deep meaning of things is not understood the mind's essential peace is disturbed to no avail.
    The Way is perfect like vast space when nothing is lacking and nothing is in excess.
    Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject that we do not see the true nature of things.
    Live neither in the entanglements of outer things nor in inner feelings of emptiness.
    Be serene in the oneness of things and such erroneous views will disappear by themselves.
    When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity your very effort fills you with activity.
    As long as you remain in one extreme or the other you will never know Oneness.
    Those who do not live in the single Way fail in both activity and passivity, assertion and denial.
    To deny the reality of things is to miss their reality; to assert the emptiness of things is to miss their reality.
    The more you talk and think about it, the further astray you wander from the truth.
    Stop talking and thinking, and there is nothing you will not be able to know.
    To return to the root is to find the meaning, but to pursue appearances is to miss the source.
    At the moment of inner enlightenment there is a going beyond appearance and emptiness.
    The changes that appear to occur in the empty world we call real only because of our ignorance.
    Do not search for the truth; only cease to cherish opinions.
    Do not remain in the dualistic state -- avoid such pursuits carefully.
    If there is even a trace of this and that, of right and wrong, the Mind-essence will be lost in confusion.
    Although all dualities come from the One, do not be attached even to this One.
    When the mind exists undisturbed in the Way, nothing in the world can offend, and when such a thing can no longer offend, it ceases to exist in the old way.
    When no discriminating thoughts arise, the old mind ceases to exist.
    When thought objects vanish, the thinking-subject vanishes, as when the mind vanishes, objects vanish.
    Things are objects because of the subject (mind); the mind (subject) is such because of things (object).
    Understand the relativity of these two and the basic reality: the unity of emptiness.
    In this emptiness the two are indistinguishable and each contains in itself the whole world.
    If you do not discriminate between coarse and fine you will not be tempted to prejudice and opinion.
    To live in the Great Way is neither easy nor difficult, but those with limited views are fearful and irresolute; the faster they hurry, the slower they go, and clinging (attachment) cannot be limited; even to be attached to the idea of enlightenment is to go astray.
    Just let things be in their own way and there will be neither coming nor going.
    Obey the nature of things (your own nature), and you will walk freely and undisturbed.
    When thought is in bondage the truth is hidden, for everything is murky and unclear, and the burdensome practice of judging brings annoyance and weariness.
    What benefits can be derived from distinctions and separations?
    If you wish to move in the One Way do not dislike even the world of senses and ideas.
    Indeed, to accept them fully is identical with true Enlightenment.
    The wise man strives to no goals but the foolish man fetters himself.
    There is one Dharma, not many; distinctions arise from the clinging needs of the ignorant.
    To seek Mind with the (discriminating) mind is the greatest of all mistakes.
    Rest and unrest derive from illusion; with enlightenment there is no liking and disliking.
    All dualities come from ignorant inference.
    They are like dreams or flowers in air: foolish to try to grasp them.
    Gain and loss, right and wrong: such thoughts must finally be abolished at once.
    If the eye never sleeps, all dreams will naturally cease.
    If the mind makes no discriminations, the ten thousand things are as they are, of single essence.
    To understand the mystery of this One-essence is to be released from all entanglements.
    When all things are seen equally the timeless Self-essence is reached.
    No comparisons or analogies are possible in this causeless, relationless state.
    Consider movement stationary and the stationary in motion, both movement and rest disappear.
    When such dualities cease to exist Oneness itself cannot exist.
    To this ultimate finality no law or description applies.
    For the unified mind in accord with the Way all self-centered striving ceases.
    Doubts and irresolutions vanish and life in true faith is possible.
    With a single stroke we are freed from bondage; nothing clings to us and we hold to nothing.
    All is empty, clear, self-illuminating, with no exertion of the mind's power.
    Here thought, feeling, knowledge, and imagination are of no value.
    In this world of suchness there is neither self nor other-than-self.
    To come directly into harmony with this reality just simply say when doubt arises, 'Not two.'
    In this 'not two' nothing is separate, nothing is excluded.
    No matter when or where, enlightenment means entering this truth.
    And this truth is beyond extension or diminution in time or space; in it a single thought is ten thousand years.
    Emptiness here, Emptiness there, but the infinite universe stands always before your eyes.
    Infinitely large and infinitely small; no difference, for definitions have vanished and no boundaries are seen.
    So too with Being and Non-Being.
    Don't waste time with doubts and arguments that have nothing to do with this.
    One thing, all things: move among and intermingle, without distinction.
    To live in this realization is to be without anxiety about non-perfection.
    To live in this faith is the road to non-duality, because the non-dual is one with trusting mind.
    Words!
    The Way is beyond language, for in it there is
    no yesterday,
    no tomorrow,
    no today.

    20110923

    10 OXHERDING PICTURES





    Enjoy the video on the 10 Ox Herding Pictures.  This is a classic Zen explanation of our journey.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=bN126j4FH7g

    20110602

    LIBRARY





    The Little Heron Zen Hermitage offers a unique collection of books to borrow, all intended to support the study and practice of Buddhism in its many forms and traditions.

    The Library is available to practitioners who can borrow the books for a three week period, with an option to renew.

    See Thich nu Tinh Quang after meditation, if you would like to borrow a book, or call to make an appointment for another time.

    20110308

    DHARMA HUMOUR



    A cursory understanding of Buddhism and Zen will be helpful to understand a few of these…not that it matters either way, since all is nothingness…so we might as well laugh about it.



    ~ 1.
    Q: How many Zen buddhists does it take to change a light bulb?
    A: Three – one to change it, one to not-change it and one to both change-and not-change it.
    ~ 2.
    Zen is not easy.
    It takes effort to attain nothingness.
    And then what do you have?
    Bugger all.
    ~ 3.
    Wherever you go, there you are.
    Your luggage is another story.
    ~ 4.
    Breathe in. Breathe out.
    Breathe in. Breathe out.
    Forget this and attaining Enlightenment
    will be the least of your problems.
    ~ 5.
    Drink tea and nourish life.
    With the first sip… joy.
    With the second… satisfaction.
    With the third, peace.
    With the fourth, a danish.
    ~ 6.
    A young woman asked Suzuki Roshi after a talk, “Roshi, sometimes when I’m trying to decide what I should do, I ask myself, ‘In this case, what would Roshi do?’ Should I continue that practice?”
    Roshi answered, “Then should I also ask myself, ‘What would Roshi do?’
    ~ 7.
    One zen student said, “My teacher is the best. He can go days without eating.”
    The second said, “My teacher has so much self-control, he can go days without sleep.”
    The third said, “My teacher is so wise that he eats when he’s hungry and sleeps when he’s tired.”
    ~ 8.
    Q: How much “ego” do you need?
    A: Just enough so that you don’t step in front of a bus.
    ~ Shunryu Suzuki
    ~ 9.
    “I gained nothing at all from Supreme Enlightenment, and for that very reason it is called Supreme Enlightenment.”
    – Gautama Buddha
    ~ 10.
    If there is no self,
    whose arthritis is this?

    20100901

    LOCATION








    Unless otherwise noted, all teachings and meditation are held at

    74 Alpine Avenue
    Hamilton, Ontario


    North of Concession Street, between Upper Wentworth and Belwood Avenue. 
    Look for the black door and Phu Dogs.  Parking on the street.

    20100830





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