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The Sound That Hears Itself

Tick, tock. Tick, Tock.
I can barely make it out below the rustling when it dissolves into the clang and clatter of dishes passed, food glopped into waiting bowls, a jar scrrrrrrraped across the table, the CRICK of a chair. Beneath the breakfast melody, a bass long tone hmmmmm from the tea area. Winged flutes trill outside. A drumroll crescendos high above. 

As Real as a Dream

"Let's dream this dream together." Seido closed her eyes. Gathered in the cave-like library in the heart of the residents' sleeping hall, we settled into a scene of ancient ruins presented in the dream.

New Dharma Holders

To acknowledge their powerful longtime contributions to ZCO and encourage their abilities in teaching, Laura Jomon Martin and Ed Gensho Welsh received the title of Dharma Holders and symbolic purple Rakusus. 


The Great Matter

A star at dawn, a bubble in a stream, a flash of lightning in a summer cloud, a flickering lamp, a phantom, and a dream. So is this fleeting world. -The Diamond Sutra


Nourishing the Hungry Heart

Chozen Roshi, Master Food Eater, guided a brimming room through a weekend retreat on learning to Eat Mindfully at Great Vow. And I say learning because, as Chozen stressed, "Real, lasting change comes from baby steps repeated over and over. It doesn't come from a revelation." 


Founded on Generosity

ZCO hosted its annual Founder's Day benefit dinner with the Bodhidharma-inspired theme "Eyes Wide Open to the Future." All money raised went to help pay off the monastery's mortgage. 

Sangha member Janine remarked how in previous groups, the asking had been more aggressive. "Maybe they would raise more money that way," she said, "But then people might feel like the monastery owed them something. Here, it really is all our monastery." 



"Why do we chant 'Mu! Mu! Mu!' during kinhin?" Chozen asked. "From one point of view, it's totally absurd." 

We took our places around the zendo perimeter facing out, her question lingering. When we'd discovered this new seating arrangement, Nadia lamented, "Oh, that's...lonely." "Yup!" Chozen smiled mischievously. "It's just you, the wall, and your mind." 


Super Moon

On Sunday, September 27th, Hogen Roshi and Chozen Roshi celebrated Heart of Wisdom’s monthly Full Moon Metta Meditation. That night we and the whole world watched a "super moon" full lunar eclipse. A super moon happens when the moon is full and at its closest to the earth. A super moon eclipse won’t happen again until 2033.


Photo by Doug Onkatsu Kagel


Earth Days

As the high summer sun puffed out his chest and preened himself, we made like the chip-monks stuffing our boots with seeds and gathered pears by the wagonful.

A Mighty Vow

The zendo brimmed with friendly witnesses as Shinei took the vows of priesthood.