Weekly/Fortnightly Group Meetings
Every Tuesday from 7.30 - 8.30 am in my consulting rooms, 4/54 Wheatley Street, BELLINGEN
Every second Sunday from 10 am - 12 noon at the Sawtell CWA Hall, 21 Elizabeth Street, SAWTELL.
I will be facilitating a discussion group at both Bellingen and Sawtell more details +.
Regular non-residential one day retreats will be held at Sawtell Zendo and a two sesshins (residential retreats) will be held at Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre, in May and October 10-13. October retreat flyer +
Happy New Year! I am very excited about the program on offer for this year. Please check out the attached calendar.
This year we will be studying in detail my particular Zen teaching lineage. We will start in the first semester studying the work of Charlotte Joko Beck (my grandmother in the dharma) and following this we will be studying the work of Barry Magid (my father in the dharma). During the second semester we will also have a live dharma talk given by Barry with an opportunity for Q & A.
NEW: Discussion Group
This year I will be facilitating a discussion group for both the Bellingen Tuesday morning group and the Sawtell Sunday morning group. The discussion group will read and discuss selected chapters from Joko Beck in the first semester and Barry Magid in the second semester. My dharma talks will also reflect this structure.
The questions I want you to focus on for the first discussion group for this year are: What is not practice?, What is practice? & Why do I practice?
The discussion will begin with a reading of a chapter from Joko’s first book entitled "What practice is".
NEW: Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre - Residential Retreats
I am very excited to announce that I have made a booking for two sesshins (residential Zen retreats) for 2019 to be held at Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre - May 10-12 and October 10-13. Download flyer for May 10-12 retreat.
Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre is situated midway between Coffs Harbour and Grafton on the Mid North Coast of NSW. Drive north past Woolgoolga or south past Halfway Creek and take the Yarrawarra/Red Rock turn off at Corindi Beach. Turn left on to Red Rock Road and follow the signs.
NEW: The Jikido’s Role
Please let me know if you are interested in learning the role of Jikido (leadership role). In Zen Buddhism, it is the job of the jikidō (直堂) to run the zendo according to the rules prescribed by the teacher, and maintain the zendo's schedule. The jikido makes a commitment to run every regularly scheduled sitting in Sawtell and each bi-annual sesshin. The jikido keeps time for the schedule, which is signalled using the gong and the bell, and leads the kinhin practice (walking meditation). The jikido also doubles as chant leader (more below).
A senior practitioner, other than myself, is especially needed for our residential retreats (sesshins), when I may not always be able to be present in the zendo. In traditional Sōtō Zen, the jikido is the one person, other than the teacher, who faces outward in the zendo instead of facing the wall. This is because the jikido's practice cannot be simply private or inward, but must always face outward, aware and responsive to what's going on in the zendo. The jikido's job is not just to facilitate the functioning of the zendo, the jikido embodies and exemplifies practice as functioning. And that is the functioning of no-self – of the forgotten self – that responds to each thing in turn, performs each function in turn without a thought of right or wrong or how am I doing or how do I look doing it.
If you have been with the group for over a year and you are interested in learning this role, please send me an email.
Suggested Dana (Donation) for Sawtell Sunday Morning Meetings
Given that we will be using the Sawtell CWA room for three hours of formal practice in 2019, the suggested dana for the Sunday Sawtell meetings (covering rent and other expenses) for 2019 will be $10. However, please note that dana is voluntary, and there is no requirement to pay any dana if this would prevent you from attending. Please only give what you can afford. We want to maintain the tradition of making the teachings as freely available as possible.
4/54 Wheatley Street, Bellingen
CWA Hall, 21 Elizabeth Street, Sawtell