Thursday, October 03, 2013

Stripping the forests bare

Yesterday we went to Tenryu-ji and met with Thomas Kirchener, an American who has been a Zen monk for many years.  He talked about the life of a the monastery, the ways in which it balances intense periods of meditation with time away and time on physical tasks.  I enjoyed the connections he made to the writings and practices of the Desert Fathers.

Here he is showing the students where a monk would store his futon, to roll out onto the tatami to sleep each night. There is one drawer below for other belongings.  Stripping to the bare necessities.

You can read the latest adventures of the crew sitting zazen and in the bamboo forest.


  1. Your students are very blessed to learn how connected we are to people of other faith traditions. Many people never realize that and most don't have the opportunity until much later in life. Blessings and prayers.

    1. Thanks, Lynda! It's a grace to be able to make this trip....

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