July '19 Newsletter

Monthly Teaching from Seiso Sensei
Dharma Talk: LZC Newsletter July 1, 2019
Jijuyu Samadhi
Rev. Seiso Paul Cooper, Sensei
Zen is typically defined as a linear progression from the Indian dhyāna transliterated as Ch’an in Chinese and again transliterated as Zen in Japanese.
This quote from Dōgen’s Fukanzazengi clarifies the limitations of a straight linear etymological definition of Zen on several levels.
“Zazen is not the practice of dhyāna: it is just the dharma gate of ease and joy. It is the practice and verification of ultimate bodhi.  The koan realized. Baskets and cages cannot get to it” (Trans. C. Bielefeldt, 1988, p. 134).
First, such a definition does not take account of the Zen critique of the quietist influenced trance-inducing practices associated with Indian dhyāna. Dōgen, among others was vehemently critical of such practices. He unpacks his critiques for instance in the Zazenshin fascicle of the Shobogenzo where he argues that:
“Recently, however, some stupid illiterates say, “once the breast is without concerns, the concentrated effort at seated meditation is a state of peace and calm” (Bielefeldt, Trans. p. 190).
“The breast without concerns" is a direct reference to quietist practices. Additionally, the etymological approach does not take account of the diversity of forms within Ch’an itself. On this point, Bielefeldt notes that dhyāna “… is only one, finite spiritual technique; Moreover, it is a technique that serves to deaden the mind” (p. 135).
Dōgen makes it clear that shikantaza is at once the practice and the expression of the fundamentally ever-realized nature of being; the pure undecorated, non-contrived expression of Buddha nature. From his actional and relational perspective we can say that shikantaza is the direct activity of Bodhicitta, the mind of fully realized awareness of the rising and falling of all experience without attachment or aversion; no grasping, no clinging, just being-as-it is. 
Jijuyu Zanmai
Jijuyu Zanmai can be translated as self-fulfillment Samadhi
However, in order to understand jijuyu zanmai, one has to understand the underlying principle of shikantaza, as presented by Dogen Zenji.
Jijuyu Zanmai may be translated Ji- as self or in oneself, Ju- to receive or accept,
and Yu- to use, work or function in concentrated union.  It implies that we are open to oneness [to be realized by all Being] and this openness to the oneness of all being can inform our actions.
Samadhi has had many translations, among them concentration or single-mindedness, absorption; It is the place where there is no discrimination between you and zazen (subject and object merged).
Uchiyama Roshi translates Samadhi as Right Acceptance. The deep acceptance of life as it is in each moment; Immo. This acceptance rests deep in our bodies and allows us the ease, calmness and openness to patiently receive all that is happening both from the relative and from the absolute perspectives. This acceptance allows the self to settle into the self. The word settled is so evocative of the type of groundedness and stability that aligns with Samadhi.
Shikantaza also has various meanings. Shikan means just or only. Ta means to hit. Za means to sit. Literally it means to hit “sitting” exactly on the nose of the moment. The “ta” really intensifies the notion of sitting. It brings full attention to the present; to the basic fact of sitting; nothing but sitting.
Tenshin Reb Anderson puts it this way:
“If you do your part and you put” just sitting” out there, you will get a response called enlightenment. It’s already there, completely pervading you already but you just have to put a little energy forward in order to realize it. It’s not exactly a little energy or a lot of energy. But just the energy of this moment, whatever it is. That’s why you don’t need anything else but what you’ve already got.”
In sitting practice, the mind stops at the direct and immediate bodily experience of the basic fact of sitting: posture, breathing, stillness. Uchiyama Roshi reminds us that, one can be constantly opening the hand of thought and letting our thoughts, ideas, fantasies and the stories that we tell ourselves go. Just sitting practice is, according to Uchiyama, “The self selfing the self.” Our minds just stay with the body, the mind and the breath, sitting.

Katagiri Roshi writes,
“This is zazen, without any expectation at all. It is spinning in dynamism, interconnected with the universe. In this interconnection, all sentient beings are completely absorbed into zazen itself.”
Katagiri Roshi continues to say that this Zazen itself is the practice of Buddha. Zazen itself is non-doing. This zazen is the real form of the self. Zazen is a very pure sense of human activity. We stop believing concepts and have no fabrication. In doing zazen, the thoughts and fantasies arise but we return to zazen by letting them go. This is called Jijuyu Samadhi — the manifestation of simplicity.

For All Beings




Summer Zazenkai
Watch our Facebook page for a 1/2 day Zazenkai, a period of extended practice, coming up on a Saturday morning, 07:30 - 12:00, potlunch lunch and fellowship to follow.

Ryaku Fusatsu
Thursday, 8/22/19, 6: 00 PM after meditation

Ryaku Fusatsu, traditionally the Full Moon Bodhisattva Ceremony, is practiced monthly by Zen groups throughout the world. This age-old tradition finds its roots with the historical Buddha Shakyamuni and provides a wonderful occasion to appreciate the precepts in shared group practice. Repentance and renewal of our practice vows are the core themes, which are central and help to keep our practice vital, meaningful and alive.

Morning Meditation
Will resume on Friday mornings only, 10:30 am.

T-shirts for Sale

We still have a few Lincoln Zen Center t-shirts for sale at the center, $14 each. Available in S, M or L.

Weekly Schedule

5:30 PM Meditation Instruction (for newcomers and first timers)   
6:00 PM Meditation 

8:00 PM Meditation  (newcomer instruction available)

6:00 PM Meditation
Monthly Ryaku Fusatsu, repentance and renewal of vows , after meditation: August 22nd

10:30 AM Chanting and Meditation

10:30 AM Meditation 
Dharma Service after meditation 7/28
*First timers & New Comers
If you are unable to attend the beginner's instruction on Monday nights, please email us to arrange an individual instruction session.


All classes are free and your donations help us continue this service to the community. Suggested donation is $5~$10. 


Due to weather related issues and other reasons, meditation or events (listed in this bulletin) may be canceled occasionally. If you are on our Facebook page, please check for announcements. Additionally, we will attempt to send out a special email ahead of time.
Please contact us for any questions about the schedule and other events

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A Welcoming Community

DANA [DAH-nah] (Donations)

Your donation of $5~$10 each time keeps our door open.  We appreciate your donation.


Monthly on announced Thursdays, see calendar on webpage
We repent and renew our vows through this monthly traditional Buddhist practice.


We encourage you to bring non-perishable food to fill the donation basket at the center. 


We have many past issues of Buddhist magazines free to take. 
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Lincoln, NE 68502

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