Zen Center COVID-19 Update

All is still well with the Zen Center staff at Arnold Park and Chapin Mill, with no signs of illness (or stir-craziness) worth mentioning. At Arnold Park we are down to six residents, now that two joined the crew at Chapin Mill (where they are now eight) last weekend. We are following an increased and slightly revised sitting schedule (this was to have been the week of the March 7-day sesshin), to be live streamed as follows:

Mornings: Tuesday-Friday 6:00-7:15  
  Saturday 6:15-7:30  
  Sunday starts 8:30  
Midday: Tuesday-Saturday 11:30-12:30 (no live stream)
Afternoon: Tuesday-Saturday 2:30-3:30  
Evening: M, Tu, Th, Fr 7:00-9:00  


Regarding chanting, we have dispensed with it until further notice, out of hygiene concerns. Even though the six residents are spaced well apart, chanting is a little more likely than talking to spread the coronavirus (and trigger coughing and sneezing), especially when vigorously done.

Roshi was planning yesterday to visit the residents briefly (while taking extraordinary hygiene measures), and also give dokusan in person this week, but was waved away by some frightened residents, as well as John Pulleyn and Trueman Taylor and their spouses.

Roshi has been meeting by phone with John and Trueman, and together they’re figuring out how to make podcasts of teishos and Dharma talks without going into the Center. If all goes well, there will be a teisho this Sunday that will be live streamed.

Roshi is also giving remote dokusan (still this week, as announced: Friday morning, 8:30 – 9:30), though few Sangha members have emailed him to get in the “line.” (He hopes that people have not been scared off by his request last week that they get in some sitting beforehand; it doesn’t have to be 45 minutes.) If there are times different than the ones offered this week and last week that would work better for some people, they can suggest them via email to. Roshi will now be offering dokusan by FaceTime as well as phone.

Good news from Batavia: no confirmed cases yet.