“This may be your only opportunity to have the greatest experience that a sentient being can have,” Nyogen Roshi tells us in this talk from the early days of the Hazy Moon. “You have to have faith in yourself so that you will persevere. So that you will do that which is difficult. We know those who have penetrated deep into this samadhi. Not once have they come back and mentioned to us that it’s not worth the effort.” Read on, and be inspired to make the ultimate effort in your own practice this training season.
In this timeless teisho on the fundamentals of Zen practice, Nyogen Roshi interweaves accounts of his own experience and Dogen Zenji’s classical instructions to create a simple but astonishingly vivid portrait of what it means to do zazen. Ultimately, Roshi tells us, the Zen student’s sole imperative is: “Just go to your practice. And I promise you, the moment you really do that, you will turn every sitting period into a good sitting, and I don’t care what the conditions are. It’s literally true.”
Radiant Illumination (5:45)
“Our lives as we are–that’s the radiant illumination of time.” This (audio) excerpt from Maezumi Roshi’s teisho on Uji captures both his reading of Dogen Zenji and his essential message to Zen students. “Standing, sitting, moving around, lying down … the way that the self arrays itself is the form of the entire world. Everything in the whole world is nothing but my nature.”
Maezumi on Uji: Part One (29:37)
In this first installment in a forthcoming series of talks on Uji–“being time”–Maezumi Roshi relates Uji to Dogen Zenji’s intention in the Genjokoan and the whole of the Shobogenzo. “This Uji is not a small portion of something else, but something equal to all these other titles. We are concerned here today with Uji as the Shobogenzo, as the Genjokoan.”
Maezumi on Uji: Part Two (23:35)
“All dharmas are Uji,” Maezumi Roshi tells us in the second installment in his series of talks on Dogen Zenji’s commentary on Uji–“being-time.” What does Maezumi Roshi mean when he says that everything is being-time? “Being us,” he says, “being you, being me–that’s Uji.”
Maezumi on Uji: Part Three (7:32)
“Please don’t lose that very essential part of it,” Maezumi Roshi implores us in this latest excerpt from his series of talks on Uji. “That is, how this very life of each of us is no other than the Genjokoan. Uji itself, see?”
In this audio excerpt from a talk on the Ten Oxherding Pictures, Maezumi Roshi summarizes the classic sequence of spiritual training as carried forward in the Zen tradition.
A rainy day on the freeway near her home in New Orleans reminds Patrice Bucher what she has learned through her practice at the Hazy Moon: the skills she needs to make it through the occasional downpour without losing her way.
Who says long-distance relationships can’t work? Ben Hutchison, a young husband and father in Cincinnati who learned about the Hazy Moon through Karen Maezen Miller, participated in part of our summer training period and cemented his connection to our Los Angeles sangha. “Things come together in just this way,” Ben says, already sounding like a member of the family.
By Roos Ben Ming Stamet-Geurs
By Roos Ben Ming Stamet-Geurs
“When I stepped into the Hazy Moon for the first time, I took a leap of faith I had never before thought possible. Instead of the strong person who I assumed people expected me to be, I entered the Hazy Moon just as myself: the constantly worried mother of my two little boys, and the deeply exhausted caretaker of my seriously ill husband.”
Hazy Moon priest Karen Maezen Miller’s latest book recounts how she uses the hundred-year-old Japanese garden in her backyard to glean living wisdom from the natural world.
A review of Karen Maezen Miller’s Paradise in Plain Sight. By Michael Isshin Spiller.
A collection of Hazy Moon students’ reflections on the importance of particular figures in our lineage for their practice.
At the start of the thee-day Returning to Silence Retreat outside Cincinnati this March, twenty people settled themselves into a makeshift zendo inside a converted barn at the Grailville Retreat Center.
Sangha member Mary Jotai Rosendale shares the painful but poignant experience of caring for her aging dog, Wally, as his life winds to a close. Jotai writes, “My teacher has admonished me that I tend to want to game the system–I’m looking for an angle. Sitting alone with my boy at night, wanting to do the best for him, I come up against a brick wall. There is no angle.There is only me being with him this moment and the next and, I hope, the moment after that.”
Photo/essay by John Mujo Fritzlen
What draws a new member to the Hazy Moon? “This year I decided to make a bigger commitment to my practice. I had been dabbling in Zen, but I didn’t have faith in the teachings or take my practice seriously. Seeing living examples of practice definitely instilled faith in me.”
Do you have to be crazy to spend a month at a meditation retreat? On the contrary, Camille Dawu Whitney calls her month at our summer training period “luxurious” and even “decadent,” full of subtle revelations about letting go and waking up.”The insights I had have radically transformed my life,” she writes in this reflection, from feelings of fear and suffering into “joy, love and freedom.”
Nearly everyone has an unlikely story of how they came to Zen, but at the Hazy Moon, no one’s story covers more miles than Shelley Mushoku Cao’s. We interviewed Mushoku about how she arrived at a successful professional life and a committed personal practice.
Highlights from a student talk by Hazy Moon sangha member, Michael Isshin Spiller.
An interview with G.E. So Tetsugen Stinson, Hazy Moon sangha member and Grammy winning recording artist.
What’s the real reason we meditate? An excerpt from Hand Wash Cold, by Karen Maezen Miller, sensei.
A quick, illustrated guide to attending your first sesshin.
Karen Maezen Miller, sensei, shares a key set of instructions given by Maezumi Roshi.
Sangha member Angie Shinnyo Nickol shares what brought her to practice and what keeps her connected to the Hazy Moon, even though she lives almost 6000 miles away.
Obon is a traditional Japanese Buddhist observance which allows families to honor and feel closer to their loved ones who have died. It’s a time for sharing memories, prayers, rituals of food and drink, nourishment and generosity. Photo/essay by John Mujo Fritzlen.