On Sunday, June 20th, we officially closed the Intensive Practice Period with our formal Closing Ceremony and a discussion of our practice during the month. Many thanks to all who made the period another successful opportunity for practice. We would like to send a special thank you to Rev. Daishin McCabe for leading our 4-day Sesshin at the beginning of the month. It is always a pleasure to welcome a visiting teacher to our temple. More thanks go to Rev. Jisen for leading this practice period as a senior priest. Last, but certainly not least, we are all grateful for Rev. Kyoki as our teacher in planning and helping us all through the period. Nine bows to each of you!
As we enter the month of July, we will be welcoming members of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association to Deep Spring Temple for their Board Meeting. In the coming weeks we hope to prepare the grounds and temple so that our guests have a pleasant stay with us. The SZBA Board will then drive up to Rochester, NY for the American Zen Teachers Association meeting. Best wishes for safe travels to all.
The above banner photo was taken by Sangha member Keisei Tony Roscoe as a group from ZCP were walking to the Pittsburgh Pride Parade this year. His husband, Choan Ryan Minster has included some thoughts on the Pride event in this month's edition.
From time to time we all have questions regarding our spiritual practice. When this happens, we encourage you to meet with either Jisen (email@example.com
) or Kyoki, (firstname.lastname@example.org
) for assistance. They are usually available Tuesday - Saturday 9:00am-4:00pm. Did you know that you can do a retreat at our temple and follow Kyoki's daily schedule?
|WEEKLY ZAZEN SCHEDULE:|
Sunday Intro to Zen suspended until 6/27. Please arrive 10-15 minutes before starting time.
- Deep Spring Temple: 124 Willow Ridge Road Sewickley, PA 15143 (map)
- Zen Friends: 4836 Ellsworth Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15213 (map)
|DEEP SPRING TEMPLE:|
- World Peace Ceremony: Sunday, July 4; 9:00am-12noon
- This ceremony dedicates our practice to bringing about a
more peaceful world. We follow the service with an open discussion of
- Soto Zen Buddhist Association Board Visiting: Saturday, July 10 - Wednesday, July 14
- Kyoki's teacher, Rev. Nonin Chowaney, will be visiting along with the rest of the SZBA Board members.
- During the week before (7/5-7/9) we are asking Sangha members to help prepare the temple and grounds for the arrival of our guests. Please contact Kyoki for a list of things to do throughout the week.
- Following the SZBA Board Meeting, the group will be driving to Rochester for the American Zen Teachers Association meeting.
- Board Meeting: Sunday, July 11; following the Sunday schedule.
- All are welcome to attend
this regularly scheduled ZCP board meeting.
- Ikko Narasaki Memorial: Tuesday, July 20; 5:30am-7:15am
- Rev. Ikko Narasaki was the abbot of Zuioji, a Soto Zen Monastery in Niihama, Ehime Prefecture in Japan. Both Rev. Nonin and Rev. Kyoki were students of his during their monastic training periods.
- Precept Renewal (Ryaku Fusatsu): Tuesday, July 27; 6:00-7:00pm
- This evening of the full moon ceremony offers practitioners an
opportunity to renew their commitment to the sixteen Bodhisattva precepts. All are welcome to attend.
- Read more about Ryaku Fusatsu here.
- Wednesday evening zazen; 6:00pm-7:15pm. Friends Meeting House (map).
|MARCHING IN PITTSBURGH'S GAY PRIDE PARADE|
by Sangha Member Choan Ryan Minster
Long before I began practicing Buddhism, I struggled for years to realize a truth about myself. It ran counter both to society's conventions and my own wishes. I was gay. It took years more, and the deep love of my husband, friends and family, to accept and embrace this truth about myself. When I began seeking a spiritual practice after the death of a dear teacher and friend, I knew that practice had to be one that honored this part of myself.
As it was becoming clear that Zen practice was something I wanted to explore and that the Zen Center of Pittsburgh was a place to do so, I scoured the issues of Prairie Wind archived online for evidence that Tony and I and our relationship wouldn't be viewed negatively. When we arrived for the intro, I felt an unconditional acceptance from the moment we stepped into the temple. We weren't shunned nor merely tolerated, responses I'd come to anticipate from religious institutions. We were embraced.
When Tony and I took the precepts in 2008, Kyoki chose names (Keisei "Valley Sound" and Chōan "Morning Hermitage") that spoke to each other and honored our relationship. It was a truly beautiful and touching gesture.
This year Tony's employer, Highmark, was the premier sponsor of Pittsburgh's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Week Celebrations. Highmark's LGBT employees had the opportunity to be an element of the Pride Awareness March and could bring as many family and friends as they wished to march with them. Tony asked Kyoki if she'd like to march with us, and not only did she with enthusiasm, the march became an activity of the June Practice Period.
How far we'd come: from an initial hope that we'd be accepted to the celebration of our diversity as an element of spiritual practice!
On June 13, Tony, Kyoki, Molly, Dustin, Betty and I drove to Pittsburgh after the Sunday sitting. Bryan, Chelsea and Paige joined us at the parade staging site. We marched in the parade through downtown with the Highmark group, clad in t-shirts with a rainbow swash across the back. At the end we turned and watched the rest of the often unconventional, always colorful, parade go by.
It was overwhelming to be with such kind and spirited dharma friends. So many thanks go to everyone who joined us (and to those couldn't accompany us but who kept the diligent practice going at the temple). I was especially inspired by Molly, who's dazzling spirit and homemade "I Love My Gay Uncles" stickers demonstrated an engagement with the world I couldn't have imagined at her age.
It changes your life and how you are in the world to deeply embrace yourself, for when you can you can embrace all beings. Many many thanks to the Deep Spring sangha for this teaching.
|ZEN AND MINDFULNESS BOOK CLUB|
Monday, July 26 at 7:00pm
Our next book is: Wild Chickens and Petty Tyrants: 108 Metaphors for Mindfulness by Arnold Kozak
|GIVING WHILE SEARCHING OR SHOPPING|
Did you know you can support Zen Center of Pittsburgh by using the Internet? We are registered with Goodsearch.com, which is based on the Yahoo search engine. By making Zen Center of Pittsburgh your charity, each search done on the site earns a 1 cent donation. You can take this a step further by using GoodShop when making online purchases. You can support Zen Center with purchases from online stores including Amazon, Ebay, Apple, and even airfare by first going to the Goodshop page on their website. So if you would like to support Zen Center while you surf or work, please use this service and make every click count.
So far this year, we have raised $20.42 just by people searching the internet and buying through Goodshop. You can track our progress here.
June 2010 Sesshin Participants
|UNTIL NEXT TIME:
- Please check out the latest edition of Prairie Wind Online, the quarterly newsletter offered by Abbot Rev. Nonin Chowaney.
- Visit the e-Newsletter archive to read past editions.
- To make a tax-deductible contribution to the Zen Center of Pittsburgh, please click the 'Make a Donation' button. We are deeply grateful for your generosity.