As this issue of Zen Bow goes to press (on the Web), the Center is on lockdown. Sittings are continuing but for residents only, spaced wide apart in the zendo in assigned seats. Teishos and Dharma talks are available to members as podcasts, and phone calls and FaceTime have replaced traditional dokusan practice (“knee to knee and eyeball to eyeball” in the days before social distancing). The March sesshin has been cancelled, and decisions are yet to be made about upcoming Spring events such as Buddha’s Birthday, the annual meeting, and the trustees’ meeting.
In times of uncertainty, it may help to remember the words of Marsha Linehan, the psychologist who developed DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) and a Zen practitioner:
Radical acceptance rests on letting go of the illusion of control and a willingness to notice and accept things as they are right now, without judging.
Our willingness to see things as they are, to let go of judgment, and to be grateful for the advantages that we do have will go a long way towards getting us through this pandemic. Please remember that you can still tune in to streaming audio of any scheduled sitting, and that you can take advantage of dokusan and private instruction remotely.
For dokusan, formal students of Roshi may email him (firstname.lastname@example.org) including their phone numbers and he will respond with a time that he will call. There’s also an opportunity for private instruction with Eryl Kubicka (eryl.kubicka @gmail.com), John Pulleyn (email@example.com) or Trueman Taylor (cpt0628 @gmail.com). If you’re interested, send an email to any of them with your phone number to set up an appointment. Please also remember to get in at least 30 minutes of zazen if you can before dokusan or private instruction.
— Chris Pulleyn