Rochester Zen Center

October 29, 2014

Room Left for Members – Workshop This Saturday, November 1

This Saturday’s workshop, coming only five weeks after the last one, will be fairly small. When there’s room, Center members are always welcome to attend at no charge. So if you’d like a “refresher,” let us know, and you can be confident you won’t get bumped at the last moment. If you’d like to attend, contact the Center’s receptionist, Alex Comardo: (585)-473-9180, ext. 10, or alex@rzc.org.

Fall Back This Weekend

Daylight Saving Time ends at 2 am on Sunday morning, November 2. Set your clock back that night, or you may arrive for sitting and teisho an hour early!

Flu Shots at the Center

Just a reminder of the flu clinic this Sunday, November 2, after Roshi’s teisho. Present your insurance card and one of your arms, and a nurse will take care of you.

Thousand Acre Swamp Hike

The Sangha Engagement Committee would like to invite you for a hike onSunday, November 2,in Penfield. Take advantage of the extra hour, the last of the falling leaves, and pleasant company as we walk off some of that Halloween candy through the1000 Acre Swamp(insert spooky howl). The hike will take approximately 1.5 hours and cover 3-4 miles. We will meet at the gravel parking lot at3 pm. For those who would like to carpool from the Zen Center, we will be leaving there at2:40 pm. Children and dogs are all more than welcome. If you have any questions, feel free to call Dan Esler at (585)-520-9797.

Here’s How You Get There:

  • At the intersection of I-490 and I-590 east of Rochester, take I-590 north one mile to NY-286 (Browncroft Boulevard).
  • Drive east on NY-286 approximately 4.9 miles and then turn left (north) on Jackson Road.
  • Drive approximately 0.5 miles on Jackson Road.
  • The entrance to the Thousand Acre Swamp Sanctuary is indicated by a wooden sign on the west side of Jackson Road (just north of the sheriff’s substation and adjacent to Penfield Volunteer Ambulance).
  • Turn left and follow the narrow driveway, passing to the left of the house at the end of the drive. Parking is available in the gravel lot.
  • Please do not park in the driveway at any time. A well-traveled path leads about two hundred yards to the forest edge and the beginning of the trail system.

October 23, 2014

Dokusan: “He giveth and he taketh away”

  • Thursday, October 23 (today): evening dokusan, but only until the meeting of Term Intensive participants begins at about 8:00.
  • Friday, October 24: morning dokusan added.
  • Next Monday, October 27: dokusan cancelled due to a personal commitment of Roshi’s.
  • After Monday: back on track.

Talk on Sunday

This Sunday, October 26, while Roshi is participating in the Trustees’ meeting, Andy McClain will give a Coming-to-the-Path talk. We’ll follow the usual schedule with sitting and chanting beforehand, and then Andy will tell us how he got here.

All-day Sitting Sunday

There’s also an all-day sitting scheduled for this Sunday, October 26. Besides the usual sitting that runs from 8:30 to around 10:30, there are three other blocks of formal sitting. It’s all right to come just to part of the day, but we do ask that sitters commit to stay for all of the two or three rounds of sitting in any block. Here’s the full schedule for the day:

6:15 am        Zazen

7:30             Breakfast (Center will provide)

8:30             Zazen and Coming-to-the Path Talk

10:30           Brunch in the dining room

11:00           Zazen

12:50 pm      Lunch break (bring your own)

1:30-3:00     Zazen

Investiture Ceremony for Jeanette Prince-Cherry

This coming Tuesday, October 28, Jeanette will take part in an investiture ceremony that will confirm her as a lay member of the Three Jewels Order. Roshi founded the Order in 2000 as a vehicle for lay members as well as priests to formalize their commitment to the Three Jewels (Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha) and to serve the community. Jeanette has completed a novitiate period and will now become a full member.

The ceremony, which lasts about half an hour, will be held in the zendo, around 6:45 am, after the morning sitting and in lieu of the usual chanting service. If you come to the ceremony, you’re invited to stay and join us for a celebratory breakfast at 7:30.

Flu Shots at the Center

Flu season is upon us! Getting a flu shot protects your health and the health of everyone around you. We’ll have a flu clinic here on Sunday, November 2, after sitting and teisho. If you’d like to do your part for herd immunity, please join us then. A nurse will show up at our door around 10:45 am and begin inoculating the willing. Assuming your insurance covers this, bring your card and there’s no charge. Otherwise, it’s $40.

October 15, 2014

Roshi in Madison

Roshi will leave for Madison, Wisconsin, on Thursday, October 16, leading sesshin at the Madison Zen Center over the weekend, and he’ll be back to give dokusan Monday evening, October 20. This Sunday, October 19, we’ll have sitting and chanting.

Term Intensive

The opening ceremony for the three-week fall TI is this Thursday, October 16, around 8 PM in the zendo, after an hour of sitting. If you’re interested, check out the TI webpage and fill out a form. And if you have questions, give John Pulleyn a call or e-mail him at john@rzc.org. These intensives are held twice a year, and we usually have 40 or 50 members taking part. It’s a great opportunity to strengthen your practice and your connection with others making the same effort.

Highway Cleanup

This Saturday, October 18, we’re planning our last cleanup of the year on our adopted section of I-490. We’ll meet at the Center at 10:15 and will be back for PIZZA at 12:30. Come lend a hand!

Amazon Smile

Even if you’ve set up an Amazon Smile account so that Amazon will donate 0.5% of any purchases to the Center, it can be hard to remember to log on to smile.amazon.com. If you use the Chrome browser, there an extension you can install that will log you in automatically. If you’d like to do that, here’s a link. (To install the extension, click on the bar in the upper right-hand corner of the page that reads “FREE.”)

October 2, 2014

Bodhidharma Reminder

By this evening, Thursday, October 2, we’ll have hung up nearly every picture and scroll we have of the founder of Zen and installed his figure on the altar. Sitting begins at 7:00, followed by the memorial ceremony.

Sittings during Sesshin

The 7-day October sesshin begins this Saturday evening, October 4. Sitting is informal both this Friday evening and Saturday morning, but during sesshin we’ll have the usual schedule of sittings at Arnold Park.

Term Intensive

The opening ceremony for the three-week fall TI is Thursday, October 16, around 8 PM in the zendo, after an hour of sitting. If you’re interested, check out the TI webpage and fill out a form. And if you have questions, give John a call or email him at john@rzc.org.

September 26, 2014

Bodhidharma’s Death Day

On Thursday, October 2, Roshi won’t give dokusan, and instead we’ll have two rounds of sitting followed by the annual ceremony that commemorates the death of Bodhidharma, who came from India to China and founded the Zen school of Buddhism. The “Western barbarian” shows up on the zendo altar just once a year, so come check him out!

Seeing Through Racism

The next committee meeting is scheduled for this Sunday, September 28, after teisho.

New Pictures on the Website

We have a new photo gallery program that can actually handle captions, and new pictures from this year’s Work Retreat and Buddha’s Birthday were just uploaded. Here’s a link, or just go to our home page, www.rzc.org, and click the link there.

September 10, 2014

Dokusan

Since Roshi will be leaving for Cleveland tomorrow, Thursday, September 11, to work with the Cleveland Zazen Group, the next dokusan in Rochester will be on Monday evening, September 15.

No Formal Sitting Friday Night

With the two-day sesshin beginning, there won’t be a sitting at Arnold Park this Friday evening, September 12.

Workshop Date Change

On the paper calendar that went out in the summer quarterly mailing, we had a workshop scheduled for Saturday, September 20. However, in order to allow Roshi and some of the staff to attend the People’s Climate March in New York City that weekend, the workshop was moved to September 27th. (In this, as in all things, the online calendar is always the most up-to-date!) We will have the usual Saturday morning zazen and workday on the 20th.

The Life of Gautama Buddha

On the evenings of September 19 and 20, the Indian Community Center (ICC) will present a production of “The Life of Gautama Buddha” at the Nazareth College Arts Center.

Here’s what they’ve written about it:

Presented by the ICC, “The Life of Gautama Buddha” was originally staged by Theatre World for the president of India and has been performed internationally, for the Dalai Lama, and throughout the United States.

Documenting his spiritual transformation, “The Life of Gautama Buddha,” choreographed by Santosh Nair, is unique: a fusion of music, dance, and language which creates a visual work of art that takes the audience on the journey of Prince Siddhartha’s path to Enlightenment and eventually Nirvana. It is the hope of the ICC that this exceptional creation will have a broad appeal with the culturally and spiritually diverse audiences in our area.

And here’s a link to their poster:

http://www.rzc.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Life-of-Buddha-email-poster.pdf

Ticket prices vary by seat location, but you can get a discount on any seat with the Center’s discount code: ICC20

September 4, 2014

Teisho on Sunday

Although it wasn’t listed in the calendar (until now), Roshi will give teisho this Sunday, September 7.

All-day Sitting Sunday

On Sunday we’ll also have our first all-day sitting of the fall. Here’s the schedule for the day. You can come to any or all of the four blocks of sitting.

6:15 am        Zazen

7:30             Breakfast (Center will provide)

8:30             Zazen and Teisho

10:30           Brunch in the dining room

11:00           Zazen

12:50 pm      Lunch break (bring your own)

1:30-3:00     Zazen

Climate Crisis Talk This Sunday

Here’s a repeat of an earlier announcement of Susan Spencer’s upcoming talk. She’s a doctoral candidate in microsystems engineering who specializes in design and fabrication of organic solar cells. She was personally trained by Al Gore to give presentations on solutions to the climate crisis. In her own words: “As a scientist, I am morally obligated to make ethical choices when presented with factual data. As a citizen of the human race, I believe that we have what it takes to solve the climate crisis, which will be the defining challenge of our generation. Join me!”

Susan will give a talk in the Center’s library on the third floor of 5 Arnold Park this Sunday, September 7, at about 11 o’clock, following the brunch. Note that we’ve moved the location from the dining room to avoid disturbing those sitting in the zendo.

Poetry Workshop Postponed

With both the all-day sitting and Susan Spencer’s talk going on this Sunday, the scheduled poetry workshop will be postponed. Stay tuned for a later announcement when we’ve settled on a new date.

Upcoming Mindful Practice Workshop for Medical Practitioners

Dr. Ron Epstein and Center member Dr. Mick Krasner will be leading a four-day workshop retreat for medical practitioners at Chapin Mill from May 7 to 10. The retreat is hosted by the Center for Experiential Learning, University of Rochester Medical Center. Drs. Epstein and Krasner are both faculty members at the University of Rochester. If you’d like to learn more, click here.

August 19, 2014

End-of-Summer Break

This evening, August 19, is our last formal sitting before the annual two-week break that ends our summer. Some staff will be here holding down the fort, and members are welcome to stop by anytime during the break to sit in the zendo or use the library. We resume on Wednesday, September 3, with early-morning zazen and dokusan.

Earth Vigil in New York City

On Sunday September 21, what promises to be the largest protest march ever in response to climate change will snake through downtown Manhattan. In the midst of it, the Zen Center’s Earth Vigil group, including Roshi, will be staging an open sitting in conjunction other like-minded groups. Buses will leave the Center early on Saturday morning, the 20th, and then we’ll sit all day Sunday and return that night.

If you’d like to reserve a seat on the bus ($20 round-trip) and free lodging in NYC, or have any questions, send an email to Earthvigil@rzc.org or call the Center at (585) 473-9180.

Climate Crisis and Renewable Energy Solutions

Susan Spencer is a doctoral candidate in microsystems engineering who specializes in design and fabrication of organic solar cells. She was personally trained by Al Gore to give presentations on solutions to the climate crisis. In her own words: “As a scientist, I am morally obligated to make ethical choices when presented with factual data. As a citizen of the human race, I believe that we have what it takes to solve the climate crisis, which will be the defining challenge of our generation. Join me!”

Susan will give a talk in the Center’s dining room on Sunday, September 7, at about 11 o’clock, following the brunch.

August 6, 2014

July ‘64

The “Seeing Through Racism” group will be screening the movie “July ‘64” this coming Saturday, August 9, at 7 pm in the Center’s library, with a discussion afterwards. This film tells the story of a historic three-day race riot that erupted in Rochester on the night of July 24, 1964, when frustration and resentment brought on by institutional racism, overcrowding, lack of job opportunity and police dog attacks erupted in violence. The uprising, which later came to be known as the Rochester Riot, sparked a series of summertime riots in other small and mid-sized northern cities. We are also hoping to have a chanting service soon in remembrance of this event.

No Dokusan Tomorrow Evening

There will be no dokusan tomorrow evening, Thursday, August 7.

Dharma Talk this Sunday

This Sunday morning, August 10, starting at 8:30, we’ll have the usual sitting and chanting, followed by a Dharma talk by Eryl Kubicka.

Rescheduling Highway Cleanup

Due to a scheduling conflict, we’re moving our Interstate 490 cleanup operation to Saturday, August 16, leaving the Center at 11 AM.  What hasn’t changed is the promise of pizza for lunch.

BGAG News

The Board Game Appreciation Group plans to meet (and play board games) after the Sunday morning sittings on August 10 and September 28.

Sesshin Fees

The Trustees decided at their meeting in May to institute an increase in the charge for sesshin (the first increase in 14 years).  Member rates are going up from $40 to $45/day and rates for non-members will go up to $65 from $55.  We’ll make the change starting September 1, so if you want to apply early and save money, you’re welcome to do that.  Roshi reminds members that they can apply to him for assistance from the Abbot’s Fund if they need financial help to get to sesshin.