After a recent online sesshin on the theme of Entering the Buddha Way, it occurred to me that the same theme could be the basis of a class. So I’d like to offer a class starting on Monday, September 28, titled “Entering the Buddha Way”.
In the sesshin the core notions I presented were: Leaving home/staying home; Sustaining engagement; Cultivation; Immersion; and Discovering harmony. The class will unpack each of these notions using classic teachings and contemporary commentary. In addition to the weekly class there will be suggested practices and the option of joining a small group that will meet weekly during the class to share participants’ experiences in practicing with the teachings. The class will be online and will happen from 10:30 AM to 12 noon Pacific Standard Time (6:30 PM to 8 PM Belfast time). A recording of each class will be emailed to class members, so you’ll be able to participate even if you can’t be available at 10:30 AM.
“Sesshin is a time to deeply care for and collect body and mind.”
Dear Dharma Friends,
If you’ve ever sat sesshin with us, you’ll be familiar with the traditional “sesshin admonitions” that are read aloud on the first evening, encouraging us to dedicate ourselves to a rigorous schedule within the physical container of sesshin.
But how can we sit sesshin in the familiarity of our own homes? Can we turn our daily life into a sesshin? These are the questions that prompted us to design a schedule that will be a container for our sitting practice over five days, from Tuesday to Sunday, September 8 to 13. The theme of the sesshin will be “Entering the Buddha Way”. The day will start early in the morning in Belfast and Slovenia and continue across the time zones, ending at 8:45 pm in California. We will have a dharma talk from Ryushin Paul Haller every day (7:30 pm in Belfast, 11:30 am in California). See the schedule below.
This new way of practising together will allow and challenge us each to design our own participation to accommodate our needs and our responsibilities. The hope is that you’ll make a schedule that you commit to completely follow and also take care of the practicalities of your life. If you can’t attend every sitting, please negotiate a way of being in your day-to-day life that expresses sesshin practice.
There will be an online Zoom zendo available from 6 am until 8:50 pm Belfast time, with members of the Belfast sangha taking care of the timing and the bells, and we need the support of some participants in the US who can take over at 4 pm Pacific Time and keep the zendo open until 8:45 pm Pacific Time, with a break from 6 pm to 7:30 pm for dinner. If you would like to be one of the Zoom doanryo for this, please contact Djinn Gallagher at email@example.com and she will arrange a training and give you the access code for the Black Mountain Zen Centre Zoom account. To register for the sesshin, email firstname.lastname@example.org. This teaching is offered freely, and if you’re able to make a donation you’ll be supporting our sesshin and future events.
The sesshin will begin at 7 pm, Belfast time (11 am California time), on Tuesday, September 8.