Maezumi Roshi Memorial Zazenkai

5/13/2022, 7:30pm - 5/15/2022, 8:00am at Myoshinji and online

The Maezumi Roshi Memorial Zazenkai will take place in person, with an online option available, from Friday evening, May 13 at 7:30 PM through Sunday morning May 15 at about 8 AM. This retreat is an opportunity to deeply appreciate the lineage of teachers that has brought this practice to us. There will be a special service for our founder and the teacher of Myoyu Roshi, Taizan Maezumi Roshi, as well as tribute to our lineage, past present and future. Maezumi Roshi came to the United States in 1956, starting at Zenshuji Soto Mission in Los Angeles, then establishing the Zen Center of Los Angeles and eventually, the White Plum Asanga, the association of Maezumi Roshi's dharma heirs, totaling more than 190 teachers today. Read more about Maezumi Roshi's life and legacy in this article appearing in Lion's Roar. This article, written in 2004, does not shy away from a discussion of Maezumi Roshi's challenges and their impact on the ZCLA sangha, in addition to describing his remarkable journey in bringing Zen Buddhist practice to the west.

The best way that we can express our gratitude for the robust practice tradition that has come to us, honed through generations, is to make our own vow to practice deeply and unendingly. We acknowledge the profound legacy of our ancestry in the dharma – its forms and practices - and at the same time, acknowledge the ways in which the dharma seeks to manifest presently.

As in last year's Maezumi Roshi Memorial Zazenkai, we will invite participants to speak for 3-5 minutes about how the teaching of Maezumi Roshi has impacted or guided their Zen practice. For example, you may choose a passage from one of Maezumi Roshi's books – Appreciate Your Life, On Zen Practice 1, On Zen Practice II, Hazy Moon of Enlightenment or Teaching of the Great Mountain – to speak about in relation to your own practice. Or you may find quotes on the internet that inspire your reflections.

This year, you can also choose to speak about the influence of one of Maezumi Roshi's Dharma heirs on your practice. A list of the dharma heirs (many generations now) can be found on the White Plum Asanga website here. If you would prefer not to speak, that's OK as well. After registering, you will receive complete instructions including a link to participate online if you would prefer to participate in that way. Part time participation and/or hybrid schedule (some in person/some online) is also allowed. An overview of the schedule is as follows:

Friday evening, we will begin with three periods of sitting, which will include opening remarks and precautions. The evening will end with the Four Bodhisattva Vows and three bows. On Saturday morning, we begin at 5:30 AM with the chanting of the Verse of Atonement and Three Refuges and three sitting periods. Morning service will be a special founder's service for Maezumi Roshi, followed by breakfast.

There will be two late morning sitting periods starting at 9:30 AM followed by short remarks by participants about Maezumi Roshi's teaching, sitting, lunch service and lunch. After lunch is a work period, followed by a period of zazen and then evening service.

After dinner break will be three more periods of sitting (online) beginning at 7:00 and ending with the Four Bodhisattva Vows and 3 bows. On Sunday morning, we will have two periods of zazen starting at 6 AM, followed by the Gate of Sweet Nectar.

The cost for the Maezumi Roshi Memorial Zazenkai is $75, which includes meals and overnight accommodations. We will attempt to have no more than 1-2 people per room. Those who prefer to have their own room can let us know and we'll let you know what options are available. COVID precautions will continue as in recent retreats until otherwise notified These include use of N95 masks indoors, proof of vaccination or testing in lieu of vaccination, and social distancing. Please register by Wednesday, May 11. For more information or questions about the zazenkai, email our registrar, Genshin.