Hi all - as I'll be away attending the Autumn Sesshin that week, we will not be holding zazen on the evening of Weds 27 October. We'll pick back up the following Wednesday as usual.
Wednesday, 6 October 2021
Tuesday, 21 September 2021
If you get emails from StoneWater (and if not, you can sign up using the form at the bottom of the main page at www.stonewaterzen.org), you might have noticed that the online Zen sessions are being moved to Thursday evenings because of difficulties with 'broadcasting' the main Wednesday evening in the Liverpool zendo.
For those of us outside Liverpool, this is great - we'll be able to sit together on Zoom and have interviews with Keizan Roshi, Shinro Sensei or Suigen Sensei each week.
But, of course, this now clashes with the rescheduled zazen sessions in Northampton! So, from Wednesday 6th October 2021, we're moving our Northampton group meetings back to Wednesday evenings to enable us to participate in the online Thursdays.
Nothing else changes - venue, times, etc - just the day. And do please note that we'll be meeting on Thursdays for the rest of September.
Thursday, 19 August 2021
The move to Thursdays keeps Wednesday evenings open for us to continue sitting online with the Keizan Roshi and the wider StoneWater community via Zoom. Currently (i.e. for August), the sittings are limited to weekday mornings, but the evening sessions will be restarting in September. No specifics yet, but details will follow, and I'm sure that the online Zendo page at www.stonewaterzen.org/stonewater-zen-online will be updated as things are decided.
Can't wait to meet up again! All very exciting.
Monday, 9 August 2021
I've also asked them if they would be able to accommodate us on either the Tuesday or Thursday evenings instead of the Wednesday evenings, so that this doesn't absolutely stop us from joining in with the online Wednesdays that I believe are going to continue, pandemic or no. I've no idea whether they'll be able to accommodate us with this, but I'll keep you all posted.
It's been a long, long 18 months, and while the online sittings with the national - and international! - sangha have been a godsend (is that appropriate?!), I can't wait to sit with people in a room again, breathing the same air, having a cup of tea afterwards and just interacting in the usual way! It will feel very odd sitting without Lorna - her absence will be the hardest thing about meeting up again. But I think she'd have been upset if we didn't pick things up again as a group.
So - pencil in Wednesday 1st of September into your diaries for our first zazen of the re-opening. I'll post again here and in the Facebook group if the day or date changes.
Friday, 13 March 2020
The suggestion is that where possible, we maintain our usual schedule (summarised below). We must be realistic, though, and adapt this if necessary to the changed circumstances of our sitting.
|7.30 - 8.00pm||Seated meditation|
|8.00 - 8.10pm||Kin-hin (walking meditation)|
|8.10 - 8.40pm||Seated meditation|
It is always advised to have a quiet place to sit (preferably one dedicated to the purpose, even if only in the corner of a room... but that's not always possible). You might want to set up an altar - the basic elements are a 'rupa' (Buddha-figure or alternative... even just an interesting-looking rock if it has some meaning for you!), a candle, flowers and incense. Or whatever works for you.
I'll be starting by offering incense and three full bows at 7.30pm, and ending by reciting the Four Vows (three times as usual). It's not necessary, but it sets the intention for the coming practice. Here are the Vows if you want to chant them:
Sentient beings are numberless, I vow to save them all;(Yes, it's impossible to keep these vows...! Ask me about them some day and we can chat perhaps after Zen one evening...!)
Desires are inexhaustible, I vow to put an end to them;
The Dharmas are boundless, I vow to master them;
The Buddha Way is unsurpassable; I vow to attain it.
Even if you don't usually (or often, or recently...!!) sit with us, I'd encourage you to set this time aside and do some or all of the time with us each Wednesday evening. If you've not sat before but want to take advantage of the pandemic to try it for the first time, I'd be very happy to chat with you about it. Usually, I'd spend about 20mins or so chatting face-to-face before your first sit, but as an alternative, give me a call (number below) a day or so beforehand and we can talk. If I can't take the call, leave a message and I'll call back.
I've set up a WhatsApp group for anyone who's keen to join in - send me your phone number (firstname.lastname@example.org or text me at 07807 753 781) and I'll add you to the group. We'll check in with each other just before the start of the session at about 7.20pm, and say thanks and goodnight at the end. Do feel free to use it to keep in touch more generally for the rest of the week.
Thursday, 12 March 2020
We will keep up with the practice, though! Please do join us every Wednesday from the comfort of your own home, as we 'commit to sit' at 7.30pm for the usual two 30-minute periods of zazen (or whatever you can manage in the circumstances of your own domestic situation!).
I'll update with an invitation to join a WhatsApp group to keep in touch and synchonise our Wednesday evenings, keep your eyes peeled!
(But don't touch your eyes... or nose or mouth... and wash your hands... mindfully of course!)