ZCLA Normandie Mountain Lincroft Zen Sangha Valley Sangha Ocean Moon Sangha. October 4 to December 31, 2008

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1 FALL PRACTICE PERIOD COMMITMENT FORM ZCLA Normandie Mountain Lincroft Zen Sangha Valley Sangha Ocean Moon Sangha October 4 to December 31, 2008 Please Join the Practice Period Greetings, Bodhisattvas!. This Practice Period unites four dedicated Sanghas: ZCLA Normandie Mountain (CA) led by Roshi Egyoku, the Lincroft Sangha in Atlantic City (NJ) led by Sensei Merle Kodo Boyd, the Ocean Moon Sangha in Santa Monica (CA) led by Sensei John Daishin Buksbazen, and the Valley Sangha in Woodland Hills (CA) led by Dharma Holder Patricia Shingetsu Guzy. How fortunate we are to undertake this Practice Period together. The theme is practice and work are not two. We will explore the many facets of work as it is penetrated by spiritual practice. Let s leave ourselves open to many possibilities and discoveries is my work infused with what the enlightened Chinese Layman Pang called miraculous power and spiritual activity? INSIDE 2 Practice Period Daily Schedule 3-4 Mandala Commitment Forms 5 The Personal Practice Mandala 6 Notes on the Personal Practice Mandala We would like 100% participation from each Sangha member. So wherever you are living and whatever your circumstances, take a moment and reflect on how you will co-create a practice period with the Sangha. Stretch yourself in your commitments, yet finding the just the right place so that you are not easily discouraged as well. We join you in the practice of manifesting the Buddhadharma in everything we do! Please read through this handout and make your commitment. All participants will be posted on a combined list at each Sangha location. Roshi Egyoku Sensei Daishin Sensei Kodo Dharma Holder Shingetsu A Message From Head Trainee Penelope Luminous-Heart Thompson I feel honored and filled with gratitude that Roshi has extended to me the opportunity to be your Head Trainee for the coming year. As we enter the Fall Practice Period, we step once again into the freedom of Not Knowing, entrusting ourselves to this deep practice. What a blessing to share to be members of this cherished Sangha, to practice together, to support each other in our being and becoming. May we grow in our capacity to live fully in this very moment and to respond with open mind and heart to what it brings. Luminous-Heart will serve as Head Trainee from October 2008 through October With love and deep bows,

2 FALL 2008 PRACTICE PERIOD Weekly Schedule for ZCLA Normandie Mountain, Lincroft Zen Sangha, Valley Sangha, & Ocean Moon Sangha Saturday, October 4 - Monday, December 31, 2008 You may join any part of the schedule. See the Water Wheel & calendar for more schedule information. ZCLA MONDAY & TUESDAY* 5:25-6:30 a.m. Zazen 6:30 a.m. Hosan** Service 7:30 p.m. Zazen 8:05 Kinhin 8:15 Zazen 8:50 Four Vows * Practice week officially begins with Tuesday evening zazen. **Hosan is time off for staff and full-time participants. Literally, means no dokusan (face-to-face). ***Kinhin line begins in Sangha House driveway and circles the SH. You may join at any time. **** Members may join meals. Prior notification is necessary by contacting the office or signing up no later than noon the day before you wish to attend. No fees for meals. ZCLA WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY & FRIDAY 5:15-5:25 a.m. Waking up the Body: Outside Kinhin or Buddha Stretch ing*** 5:25-6:30 Zazen/Kinhin 6:30 Morning Service Followed by Hakuryusan Service 9-11:15 Work Service/Work 11-12:00 Working-together Practice (Fushinzamu) 12:00 p.m. Noon Service (Fri.: Hakuryusan Service) Open schedule until 2:00 p.m. 2-5:00 Work Evening Wednesday & Friday 7:15 Evening Service 7:30 Zazen 8:50 Four Vows Evening Thursday 6:15 Sangha Dinner: **** Everyone welcome 7:15 Evening Service 7:30 Zazen / Talk Followed by Tea & Cookies 8:50 Four Vows ZCLA SATURDAY 6-7:00 a.m Zazen (Wall-gazing, join any time) 7:05 Buffet Breakfast**** (No Silence) Followed by scheduled Saturday Program (see calendar) ZCLA SUNDAY 6-7:00 a.m Zazen (Wall-gazing, join any time) 7:05 Buffet Breakfast** (No Silence) Followed by scheduled Sunday Program (see calendar) VALLEY SANGHA MONDAYS 7:30-9:00 p.m. Service/ Brief talk/ Zazen OCEAN MOON SANGHA WEDNESDAY 7-7:25 p.m. Dharma Chat (Q&A) 7:25-9:00 Zazen Dharma Talk 1st Wed. of each month LINCROFT ZEN SANGHA WEDNESDAY 7-9:00 p.m. Zazen/Talk -2-

3 PRACTICE PERIOD COMMITMENT MANDALA October 4 through December 31, 2008 I will serve others by: SERVICE Take action! I will approach my livelihood as service by: I will perform everyday acts of kindness by: How to fill out this form: Make a commitment to zazen and working with a teacher in the Buddha Sphere, as well as one aspect in one other sphere. The aspect statements are suggestions. Refer to pages 5 and 6 for the Personal Practice Mandala. Please consult with the teachers as appropriate. Cut, copy, and send. RELATIONSHIPS Be Intimate! I will harmonize my relationship with (name specific person, family, etc.): I will integrate energies by (art, music, dance, writing, etc.): BUDDHA (SOURCE) Include Everything! My essential vow is: I will do zazen (see reverse side of form). I will study: STUDY See Clearly! I will explore issues around my sexuality by: I will go to one-to-one teacher interviews (note frequency): RESOURCES Take Care! I will build a foundation with the precepts by: I will attend to my issues around money by: I will care for my body by: Print your name: Your signature: Date: Keep a copy for yourself and send a copy to the appropriate Sangha: ZCLA, Lincroft Sangha, Ocean Moon Sangha, and Valley Sangha by September 30, Your name will go on the Sangha Training Boards. ZCLA members, you may cut out, copy, fold this page, seal the sides with tape, place a stamp and mail, or it to Thank you! -3-

4 Guide for Zazen and Zendo Participation (No sincere dharma practitioner is turned away for lack of funds. Please inquire in the office about the Dharma Training Fund.) Home Practice Schedule: I will sit at home days per week for minutes per day. Practice Schedules: I will sit at Normandie Mountain mornings M Tu W Th F Sat Sun evenings M Tu W Th F I will sit at the Lincroft Zen Sangha: evenings W (LZS members have additional group times.) I will sit at the Ocean Moon Sangha: evenings W I will sit at the Valley Sangha: evenings M ZCLA Normandie Mountain Sesshin & Retreat (You must register with the ZCLA office.) I will attend sesshin, October 5 (evening) through 11. I will attend (all or part) of the Rohatsu Sesshin, December 5 (evening) through December 13. I will attend (all or part) of the Year-End Sesshin, December 26 (evening) through 31st. ZCLA Normandie Mountain Meals. (Please sign up on the Sangha House bulletin board at least one day in advance.) I will join the Sangha dinner: Thurs I will join the Sangha breakfasts on: Sat Sun I would like to be tenzo for a meal. Contact Program Steward (Gemmon) at (213) and/or Service Positions At ZCLA, I will be jikido (Zendo timekeeper). Contact Zendo Steward (Koan) at (213) for scheduling and training. At ZCLA, I want to learn service positions. Contact Ino (Dokai) at (213) for training. At Valley Sangha, I want to learn jikido, doan, and chanter. Contact Dharma Holder Shingetsu for training. I will attend: ZCLA Fushinzamu (Community Caretaking Practice), Friday, October 17; and Saturday, November 22. ZCLA Day of Reflection on Saturdays, October 20 and November 15. ZCLA Atonement Ceremony on Thursday, October 16, and New Year s Eve, December 31. Comments: Thank you for your practice! Fold and seal Postage Required ZEN CENTER OF LOS ANGELES Buddha Essence Temple 923 S. Normandie Avenue Los Angeles, CA

5 PERSONAL PRACTICE MANDALA (2008 Practice Period) Everyday acts of kindness SERVICE I am all-accomplishing activity. RELATIONSHIPS I am intimacy. Relationship: -ego formation -emotions -shadow -self & other Art & Ritual Sexuality Livelihood: Work World learning: Environment Politics BUDDHA (SOURCE) I am everything. Harmony of Sameness & Differences (Sangha) Emptiness (Wisdom of Sameness Buddha) Everything (Compassion of Differences Dharma) STUDY I see clearly. Dharma study Communication & Conflict Resolution Life Skills Money Precepts & Atonement Health: Body RESOURCES I am all-enriching. Please see the next page for notes on the mandala. -5-

6 Notes on the Personal Practice Mandala The Personal Practice Mandala, like the ZCLA Organizational Mandala, is based on the Five Buddha Wisdoms as expounded in the Gate of Sweet Nectar. A mandala is a circle of life which graphically depicts the wholeness of life. We can develop many versions of this mandala. For this version, the Buddha sphere is placed in the center and represents the essence of one s True Nature. The various sections within each family simply bring out some aspects of the family, which help us to integrate spirituality in our lives and point to areas of maturing that are important. Let s consider the aspects: BUDDHA, or I am everything. In the Gate, we chant, Being one with all Buddhas in the formless spheres, bodies overflow with boundless Dharma and our life is fulfilled. The aspects highlighted in this sphere are: The essential formlessness that is our True Nature. We call it by many names: Mu, True Self, Big Mind, Universal Self, Buddha Nature, Boundlessness, Groundlessness, and so forth. Here it is represented as Emptiness, the Nondual (prajna) Wisdom that is the essence of all life. This sameness is the Buddha Treasure. The Everythingness or the uniqueness (differences, diversity) that are the forms of emptiness or Dharma Treasure; and The harmonious functioning of sameness and differences, of emptiness and form, of wisdom and compassion or Sangha Treasure. Emptiful! STUDY, or I see clearly. In the Gate, we chant, Being one with All Buddhas in the Study Spheres, throats are opened and eating and drinking fully satisfy. The nourishment is the Dharma, or reality itself, and how clearly we see it. All Dharma study, such as the basic principles of reality and the sutras. Life skills that we need to learn in order to function in the world. Communication skills and conflict resolution abilities, including deep listening and speaking our truth. RESOURCES, or I am all-enriching. In the Gate, we chant, Being one with all Buddhas in the Livelihood -6- (or Resource) Spheres, bodies overflow with boundless Dharma and our life is fulfilled. The enrichment is that we are the treasure-house itself and give life to all. The precepts and atonement. Included in this is the lineage, which represents the living embodiment of the Precepts and at-one-ment as the foundation for an awakened life. Cause and effect is an essential component of this aspect. Our health and care of the body, which is the manifestation of Buddha's body itself. In our fast-paced, stressful lives, this is a challenge for many. Money, and how we understand its flow and place in spiritual life, particularly as an agent for dana. RELATIONSHIPS, or I am intimacy. In the Gate, we chant, Being one with all Buddhas in the Unifying (Relationship) spheres, extending generosity, perfection of both body and mind appears. Relationships themselves. Here we are developing a sound understanding of how the ego forms, how to work with emotions and shadow energies, how to recognize transference and countertransference, and the boundaries between self and other. Sexuality. We come to a mature understanding of our sexual nature and how to express it without harming. Art and ritual. In this aspect, we explore creative expression as a way to access and express our energies. We also engage ritual, which enables us to access the non-dual state. SERVICE, or I am all-accomplishing activity. In the Gate, we chant, Being one with all Buddhas in the Service Spheres, all sufferings of the Hungry Spirits are healed. Here we see that it is we ourselves who turn the Dharma wheel to liberate all beings. Your livelihood or work. Some people work in service fields and it may be easier to see this aspect. Here we ask you, regardless of the kind of work you do, to see concretely how it serves others. World learning. This aspect encompasses those areas that are vital to how the world functions, such as stewarding the environment and seeing politics as an arena of practice. Everyday acts of kindness, seeing and acting on the countless moments for generosity.

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