Category Archives: Old News

Five-Day Sesshin Concludes 2016 Spring Practice Period June 8 – 12, 2016

BZC will be in sesshin June 8-12. People not in sesshin are welcome to join us for zazen at these times:

  • Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 5:40am and 5:40pm
  • Saturday at 5:50 and 9:40am

Please note that there will be no noon zazen on June 8 or 9, nor will the Wednesday evening drop-in group meet on June 8.

Our spring practice period will conclude with a five-day sesshin from Wednesday, June 8th to Sunday, June 12th. The first four days’ schedule is from 5:00 am until 9:00 pm, while the final day’s schedule is from 5:00 am until 3:10 pm, followed at 3:30 by the shuso hossen, dharma dialogue with the shuso. Please sign up on the patio bulletin board for a minimum of three days; we encourage you to make two of those days consecutive. If you want to request an alternative schedule, please speak to the sesshin director. Sign-ups close on Saturday, June 4th, at 12:00 noon.

The Shuso Hossen ceremony will begin promptly at 3:30pm, and will be followed by a reception. All practice period and sesshin participants will be supporting the shuso and our practice by coming with a question.

If this is your first sesshin at BZC, it is strongly recommended that you first participate in a full Saturday program, have oryoki instruction, and that you speak with the sesshin director. The fee is $35 per day, advance payment requested. Leave checks marked “June sesshin” in the laundry room door donation slot. If you have questions, contact the sesshin director Gary Artim gartim@gmail.com or (510) 676-9756.

Trust in Mind Sojun Roshi's Spring Practice Period Class

Sojun’s class subject for the spring practice period will be the Hsin Hsin Ming (Trust in Mind). The Hsin Hsin Ming is a fundamental classic of Zen literature, concerning the interpenetration of duality and non-duality, related to our clinging to preferences and views. The Hsin Hsin Ming or Xinxin Ming is by the third Chinese Zen ancestor, Seng-ts’an who lived in the sixth century.
    Sojun has taken previous English translations from the Chinese and made edits of his own for clarity. We’ll use Sojun’s edited version for our text. Copies are now on the BZC patio shelf. If you’re interested in other translations and a cultural/historical background to the text as well as commentary, one source is Trust in Mind by Mu Soeng. In the back section are multiple translated versions arranged in a compact and easy to compare format. Its available online used for less than $10.
Class times are Thursday evenings 7:15 pm – 8:45 pm. Dates are May 5, 12, 19, 26, and June 2.
The sign up for class is on the patio bulletin board. Fee for the series is $50, payable preferably by check at class. Discounts are possible by speaking with class coordinator Ron Nestor at class. Questions can be sent to Ron at rnestor1@ahoo.com.

One-Day Sesshin | Opening of Spring Practice Period Saturday, April 30, 2016, 5:00 am – 9:00 pm

Our annual spring practice period will begin  with a one-day sesshin on Saturday, from April 30, 5:00 am until 9:00 pm. All are welcome to attend. If this is your first sesshin at BZC, it is strongly recommended that you first participate in a full Saturday program and that you speak with the sesshin director. The fee is $35 and is due by April 27th. All details are on the sesshin sign-up sheet.

Our practice period entering ceremony will take place that day at 4:00 pm. All practice period participants should make it a priority to attend the entering ceremony and support the shuso.

After you’ve signed up for the sesshin, please complete a sesshin information form and place it in the sesshin director’s box. (If you completed one for a prior sesshin, there is no need for another one unless information has changed.) If you have any questions, contact the sesshin director, Ken Powelson, sesshindirectorbzc@gmail.com.

20s / 30s Hills and Streams Backpacking Sesshin Friday, April 22 – Sunday, April 24

The Berkeley Zen Center 20s and 30s Dharma Group is happy to announce it will be hosting its second annual “Hills and Streams” backpacking sesshin, from Friday, April 22nd through Sunday, April 24th. There is also a mandatory meeting on Thursday, April 21st. The retreat will be held in the steep oak woodlands of Sunol Regional Wilderness, east of Fremont (http://www.ebparks.org/parks/sunol). Sign-up and cancellation deadline is Monday, April 11th. While readings for this sesshin will be announced at the April 19th meeting, last year we studied the Xin Xin Ming and contemplated some verses of Thich Nhat Hanh’s on walking meditation while we were hiking.

This is an intensive meditation retreat which will involve significant hiking and will maintain (to the extent possible) a sesshin atmosphere and practice. This includes long periods of silence, sitting zazen, and shared responsibilities (cooking, cleaning, etc.). If you are new to backpacking or sesshin, please speak with the director, Kelsey. This sesshin is a wonderful way to connect with other young sangha members and experience practice in wilderness. If you or someone you know is interested in attending, please fill out an application at the following link: http://bit.ly/1PBorgw or email Kelsey at kelseybrynne@gmail.com. We hope to see many old and new faces there!

One-Day Sesshin March 19, 2016, 5:00 am - 9:00 pm

Sojun Mel Weitsman will lead a one-day sesshin on Saturday, March 19,  from 5:00 am – 9:00 pm. We encourage old and new sangha members to participate. Please sign up on the patio bulletin board by Wednesday morning, March 16, after zazen. If this is your first sesshin at BZC, we recommend that you first participate in a full Saturday program and also speak with the sesshin director, Gary Artim.

The fee is $35 per day and should be paid in advance (a discounted fee is possible for those in need; please speak to the director). Leave checks marked “March Sesshin” in the mail slot in the courtyard laundry room door or mail to the BZC Office Manager at 1931 Russell St., Berkeley 94703.

If you have any questions, contact the sesshin director, Gary Artim, gartim@gmail.com or (510) 676-9756.

Read more about sesshin in general here.

Annual Women’s Sitting March 6, 2016 8:30 am - 5:00 pm

Women of all levels of experience with practice are welcome.  The sign-up sheet is now on the bulletin board at BZC for this sitting.  We will have a day of zazen, walking meditation, dharma and discussion:

How do we as women find and express our true selves, standing tall and solid within a tradition that has been male dominant while at the same time appreciate the gifts of the tradition? How do gender dynamics impact our relationships with our teachers?  This is a day devoted to exploring women’s experiences and understanding of the Dharma in the context of the increasing inclusion and impact of women, both lay and ordained, on the practice of Buddhism in American society.  The day will include a lecture and discussion period led by BZC priest Gerry Oliva.

If you cannot make it to BZC to sign in, of if you have not sat a day-long sitting before,  contact Mary Duryee at maryduryee@gmail.com.

A few details:

The fee is $25. (If you are unable to pay the full amount, contact the Mary to arrange a reduced fee.) Leave checks marked “Women’s Sesshin” in the courtyard laundry room mail slot. Checks mailed to BZC must be received by Saturday, March 5.

Lunch is not provided so please bring your own bag lunch.

As always,  please do not wear jewelry, scented body care products or clothes that have been laundered with scented products in the zendo.  Leave all electronic devices and watches behind and enter the silence.

 

For more information, please contact Mary Duryee, 510-872-0507 or e-mail her at maryduryee@gmail.com.

February Study Sesshin February 13, 2016, 5:00 am - 9:00 pm and February 14, 2016, 5:00 am - 3:00 pm

Hozan Alan Senauke will lead us to a deeper understanding of our practice through a two-day sesshin where the Dharma subject will be forthcoming (please check the bulletin board for details). On Saturday, February 13th we will sit from 5am to 9 pm with a lecture in the morning and a study period in the afternoon. On Sunday, February 14th we will sit from 5 am until 3 pm and have two study periods. We encourage old and new sangha members to participate. Please sign up on the patio bulletin board by Wednesday morning, February 10 after zazen. If this is your first sesshin at BZC, we recommend that you first participate in a full Saturday program and also speak with the sesshin director. The fee is $35 per day and should be paid in advance (a discounted fee is possible for those in need; please speak to the director). Leave checks marked “Study sesshin” in the mail slot in the courtyard laundry room door or mail to the BZC Office Manager at 1931 Russell St., Berkeley 94703. If you have any questions, contact the sesshin director, Ken Powelson at powelson@earthlink.net or (510) 326-3752.

Beginners’ Sesshin Sunday, January 31, 2016, 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

GET THE FLYER

On Sunday, January 31st, BZC will offer our annual Beginners’ sitting from 8:30 am until 4:30 pm. BZC priests Gerry Oliva and Judy Fleischman will offer instruction in the basic forms of our practice—zazen, kinhin, service—while maintaining our ground in meditation throughout the day. There will be a lecture on zazen and plenty of time for discussion. This is a good opportunity to ask questions about our practice.

Participants should bring a bag lunch, which we will eat informally in silence at midday. Newer people are particularly encouraged to take part, but we welcome longtime students who can enjoy a day of sitting and model the richness of our practice. The cost will be $15 for the day. Please see the zendo bulletin board for a sign-up sheet and further information. Contact Gerry Oliva at sesshindirectorBZC@gmail.com or (510) 652-7217 with any questions.