Karma to Dharma


Good morning!


We have a bright sunny spring morning in holy harmony after sittings and service. The Buddha said, “I live on joy,” when the devil whispered into his ears not getting food after alms round. Buddhas live on joy in limitless life, light, liberation, and love in holy (wholly wholesome) truth, goodness, and beauty.


Dogen said, “To learn the Awakened Way is to learn the self, to learn the self is to forget the self, to forget the self is to be verified by all dharmas, to be verified by all dharmas is to drop off the bodies and minds of oneself and others. Awakening trace is at rest and extinct. Traceless awakening is furthered on and on.


Learning is like baby birds flapping their wings to fly. It is learning with the whole body/mind/world, forgetting the self, verified by all dharmas, flying fully and freely. Unless one forgets oneself, one can’t verify all dharmas freely and fully, and vice versa. Even precious, gold in the eye hurts.


Sitting in Samadhi is called the Buddha-heart seal, sealing in the same state of stilling karma (nirvana). Hearts and minds were developed to live better, but worse, if learning leads to selfish karmas. Selfish (sinful) suffering or holy (wholly) happiness depends on the learning line and limit – cultivation and verification.










































































The above pictures were sent by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka from Japan

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Nirvana for New Views and Values:新観点と新価値の為の涅槃


Good morning!


We have a beautiful bright morning after our sittings and service. Did you see the big bright full moon like the super moon? The full moon represents the Awakened heart in nirvana illuminating the world. Nirvana is no wind of karma – conceptions, emotions, volitions, thus no conventions of self identity or appropriation, becoming someone or something, emptiness of all in the original zero, śūnyatā, as we recited and read in the Heart Sutra.


Originally there was nothing in our hearts, but we have gradually learnt to become Joe, Jim, et al as we grew up. Before we became such and such, we were humans, and before such specific ones, we were living beings. Why can’t we belong to living beings, before humans or national citizens? Why can’t we be beyond all such conventions and constrictions which limit our views and values? Why not limitless life in limitless light, liberation, and love?


Awakening in nirvana let anyone going beyond conventions and see things completely objective and not obstructed. Thus the Buddha could penetrate through universal and ultimate truths and ethics, performed them, and prognosticated them for all. He was awakened to the truth of interdependent co-origination of all phenomena, thus impermanence (no self-sameness), suffering (no self-sovereignty), and no self (no self same sovereign substance).


Acknowledging and accepting the truth is the way to solve problems and sufferings. Anyone can do the same in practicing cultivation and verification leading to limitless light, liberation, life, and life in holy (wholly wholesome) harmony, health, and happiness from sinful (separated sick) selfishness and suffering. Two wings of concentration and continuity are essential in sitting still, stilling karmas, and seeing dharmas.






































The above pictures were sent by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka from Japan

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Karma or Cultivation


Good morning!


We have snow falling now, with the white world covering distinctions. Last night Ekan, one of the first seven ordainees here, sent me an email congratulation for Hanyu’s championship performance of stardom figure skating at the Peace Festival. Hanyu is 23 years old and Uno, the silver medalist, is 20. The same day Fujii 15 years old beat the two national award shogi chess crownships. A 19-year-old boy had a shooting spree, killing 17 people, a few days ago here. The difference between them is that of a life led by cultivation or karma.


An interviewer asked Hanyu about his future. Hanyu said there was nothing now but happiness. The Buddha said – when devil told him to go back again for his failed begging – that he lived on joy. He could taste amrita (ambrosia, immortality) always in happiness. The so-called national leaders are now eating and feeding poisons, pushing the world to the brink of annihilation as hungry ghosts, fighting devils, and hell beings. Buddhahood never develops without cultivation, and can never be attained without witnessing.


Dogen mentioned a Buddhism of one color. What color is it – blue, green, or white like snow or this wall? White is no color, reflecting all of the color spectrum. Snow is water wherefrom all life forms have come. Sitting melts karma colors into emptiness (śūnyatā, lit. zeroness), as you experience in sitting and expressed in the Heart Sutra. From emptiness, all originate in interdependence in no self-substance, self-sameness, and self-sovereignty. Without witness of this we suffer, going through the Six Paths of hungry ghosts, etc.


From the long night of nescience, craving, and hatred we have created the fictitious unidirectional pyramidal civilization (=urbanization) with delusion, bondage, discrimination, exploitation, and destruction by fighting for money, matter, and might. From constant concentrated cultivation we can realize a natural cyclical Indra-net culture (=cultivation) with awakening, freedom, equality, love, and peace by sharing life, heart, and harmony. A 40-billion-year-old life as light can reflect each other in truth and ethic.

















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Deathless Dharma (Form/Norm: Truth/Ethic) 不死の法(諸法・法則:真理・倫理) 


Good morning!


It’s cold outside, but I hope you are warmed up in peace and truth after our sittings. This is the Dharma gate of pure peace and bliss – peace in nirvana and bliss in awakening in truth. Dogen said “It never develops without cultivation: it is never attained without verification.” (Without sitting in Zazen, stilling karma, nirvana (no wind of karma) does not develop, without actual witness of it, one can not attain and live embodying it.


We stop wars during the Olympic Games. Its symbol expresses the five continents in connected circles of peace and awakening. We can stop war at Christmastime. This verifies that wars can be rendered null and void. Wars come from karma – the Triple Poisons of delusion, desire, and divisiveness, essentially egoism.


Dogen illustrated the Awakened Way: To learn the Awakened Way is to learn the self, to learn the self is to forget the self, to forget the self is to be verified by all dharmas, to be verified by all dharmas is to drop off one’s body and mind and others’ bodies and minds. The trace of awakening is extinct and at rest. Traceless awakening is ever furthered on and on.


Sinful Self, sick Society, selfish State, Satanic Species, sinister Symbolism are the Five Fictions, Superstitions, Syndromes, which endanger the global life system to extinction. A paradigm shift urges us from syndromes to soundness of systems: ego to eco, sin to holiness, pyramidal system to Indra-net one.


The Two Islands of the self and the Dharma are two refuges in the sea of suffering: the self like a bubble starts an awakening process and awakens in the Dharma of Dependent Co-origination of all, attaining the Dharma-body like the sea – limitless life in limitless light, liberation, and love, tasting amrita (ambrosia, immortality).




Note: The Five Fictions, Superstitions, are from the Five Idola of Cave, Agora, Theatre, and Species by Francis Bacon, added with the fifth of Symbolism that myth, religion, language, art, science, and history – all are symbolism created by humans, as detected by Ernst Cassirer (cf. Essay on Man, Philosophy of Symbolism, Myth of the State, etc.). Other human activities such as politics, economy, society, culture, civilization, must be known as symbolisms. For instance, money and a money-shape tower (金字塔: pyramid) system with its money-ism, militarism, materialism, me-ism is at 2 minutes to midnight of the Doomsday Clock. (cf. Five Fictitious Bodies, as described by Gerald Barney, are modern major players of state, corporation, media, religion, and educational institutions – now all of them seem mongered by money).


















註:五仮構・迷信はフランシス・ベーコンの洞窟・広場・劇場・種族の四アドラ(偶像)に第五として、エルンスト・カッシラーが、人類が創造した神話、宗教、言語、芸術、科学、歴史などが象徴主義であることを解明した、象徴主義を加えたものです (彼の「人間」、「象徴の哲学」、「国家の神話」など参照)。政治、経済、社会、文化の人間活動も象徴主義であることを知らなければなりません。例えば拝金主義、軍国主義、物質主義、吾我主義をもつ金と金字塔は世界終末時計の真夜中まで2分となっているのです。(参考:ジェラルド・バーニーが述べた五仮構体とは現代の主要な役者達は国家、会社、メデイア、宗教、教育機関です-今やそのいずれも金によって取引されているのです。)












The above pictures were taken and contributed by Erin 慧林,

our member and editor or this blog

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Free or Not Free 自由か不自由か


Good morning!


After sitting in the best body alignment with breathing, blood circulation, muscle and nerve function, etc. working well, the body warming up and the immune function up, we become harmonious, healthy, and happy, as snow and separation disappear in warm weather. As we recite the Heart Sutra, all substance melts in śūnya, suňňa, transferred into zifr (Arabic), zero.


Yesterday, the Nuclear Posture Review was made public, strengthened further with “usable nuclear warheads.” Even though it said no preemptive attack, Trump has the sole control of nuke launching. Einstein said he did not know about WWIII, but that WWIV would be fought with stones. We now know of nuclear winter and radiation disaster, so maybe no WWIV.


Ma Thida, who was imprisoned six years due to her work with Aung San Suu Kyi by the Myanmar military regime, said, “Were it not for vipassana (observation meditation) I would not have overcome the untold hardships I faced in prison.” Thus she became free even in prison, while the guard et al outside the prison were not free, as the Deputy Prison Head said.


The Milinda-paňha, Milinda’a (Menandros, a Greek Baktrian, now Afghanistan, King) Question to the Buddhist monk Nagasena – thought to be the first dialogue between the East and the West – mentions at its end that the king said he was in a gold cage (a palace, but not free as the opposite case of Ma Thida). All are caged or boxed in ego karma unless in nirvana.




Note 1: About Ma Thida: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma_Thida

2: The following was quoted at this summary Dharma talk cautioning that now a gigantic military spending is causing miseries and sufferings: mass refuges, deaths, and the devastations of killing, stealing, lying, raping, starvation, poverty, pollution, resource depletion, global warming, mass extinction of species, etc.:


“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some fifty miles of concrete pavement. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This is, I repeat, the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron. […] Is there no other way the world may live?” (a part of president Dwight D. Eisenhauer’s farewell address on Jan. 17, 1961)













註 1:マ・チーダについてのウィキぺデイア: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma_Thida












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Super Full Moon Eclipse

Good evening!

Let’s share a part of the following comment and pictures by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka who often share his beautiful pictures with us here:

I happened to sing Rev. Honen’s poem:

Even though the Moon light reaches every countryside,

it settles in serenity only in those who are gazing at it.

People all over the world must have gazed at the total eclipse of the moon.

Because they could become one with the moon 380,000km away, people must be able to become one among them.

All are originally one!

Genko (Profound Light)


I commented on his:

It’s only one twentieth in the distance between people, as the furthest distance between people is 20,000km. Why can’t they become one? How can they become one as in origin?

It must be that the minds don’t settle and become serene. To make the minds serene is to make the body still like settling water in a bowl is settling the bowl (Body movement is the starting point of self sense and the minds’ movement: perceptions and conceptions are its expansion and strengthening. In short, if we stop karma (action, habit, heredity), we enter into nirvana (no wind of karma) and let the Triple Poisons of the self sense (discrimination), the self desire (exploitation), and the self pride (anger/extermination) become null and void.

This mostly happens in sleep and eternal sleep, which shows that karma conditions, much less the Triple Poisons, are particular and partial conditions. It then must be that if we know this particular conditions and acknowledge and attain the original no self, no desire, and no hatred: no discrimination, no exploitation, and no extermination, we can be friends (true “friends indeed is friends in need”) together.

Rosan (Entering into Stupidity)









Next morning from Irozaki
Cape Irozaki
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Triple Treasures & Pillars


Good morning!


We have a bright sunny Sunday of sesshin. Sesshin is to wake up from the long night of nescience. So, we have the triple pillars of Awakened Way, Global Ethic, and Voluntary Simplicity at our center to support and shelter all in awakening, peace, and sustainable life. The triple pillars* correspond to the triple treasure of Awakened One, Dharma, and Saṅgha, Community.


The Awakened Way is awakening by sitting still, stilling karma (nirvana), seeing Dharma (of all dharmas: Norm of all forms: Law of all phenomena, i.e., Interdependent Co-origination of perception, conception, emotion, volition, karma, world, etc.), serving and saving all in awakened life in limitless light, liberation, love, and life with persistent practice and prognosis.


Global Ethic is the first four of the Buddhist Five/Ten Precepts of no killing, no stealing, no lying, and equal partnership between men and women (modified from no sexual misconduct). These are the universal ethical codes of all religions and non-religions. There will be no war, no nukes, no mass extinction, no global warming (no stealing, lying to natural life and world).


Voluntary Simplicity is to save all living beings in sustainability. Simple life is limitless life, unbounded by a limited life of me, money, matter, etc. “Hands emptied, hands are full,” Dogen said, “If not with all, it is not the Great Awakened Way.” The Triple Poisons of delusion, desire, and divisiveness are avoided by the Triple Learnings of morality*, concentration, and prognosis.


1/28/18 Dharma talk summary


* Sīla/Śīla (Pali/Sanskrit) is the original word for pillar and morality, established character/backbones like pillars.

**The Declaration towards a Global Ethic

Cf. Global Ethic website



















Star magnolia expecting spring






Lily magnolia waiting for spring






Blooming daffodils  (3 mil. at peak) in Tsumesaki, Shimoda

taken by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka






Aloe blooming (seen in the far right in the previous photo)





Daffodil Festival in Shimoda in 2016 C.E.

by Shimoda Travel Bureau



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Karma & Akarma  業と止業


Good morning!


We have a very bright morning here, though on the east coast, East Asia, and East Europe people are having heavy snowstorms with damage. A month after the winter solstice we have the Great Chill officially due to the time lag in warming up. The temperature difference in one day is smaller than that of a whole year due to the difference between the earth’s spin and its orbit traveling.


Geocentrism came from egocentrism, but heliocentrism comes from egolessness. Nukes and wars come from egocentrism, not from egoless holiness, a wholly wholesome way of truth and ethics. Nuclear war would lead to nuclear winter, bringing the global life system into demise “by a tiny tantrum.” Human karma is the culprit of global problems and sufferings.


The triple poisons of person, personal property, and power poison and perish planetary prognosis and peace. The control key of a keyboard can shift from a simple script to a fine function. Simple sitting can shift the karma world to a nirvana state, shedding skins of karma like the north wind to the south sun removing a traveler’s coat. Anyone can witness it with practice.


One can sit still, stilling karma, seeing nirvana like white snow and black ice melting into emptiness as we realize no forms, feelings, ideas, etc., as we recited the Heart Sutra. Samadhi, concentration like a water jet, can cut even mind metal. Sustained practice, continuity like water drops, can cut through a rock. Both wings are essential to fly from karma conditions.


1/20/18 C.E.




























The above super moon pictures were taken by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka,

in Shimoda, Shizuoka, Japan


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Samsara (Karma World) & Nirvana (No-karma State)


Due to the extreme cold, heating my car made its windows clouded. Without experience this can make one panicked and involved in an accident. If, however, one knows the causal relations involved, one has no problems. The karma world is that of problems and sufferings blocked of vision. Human karmas are creating world sufferings.

It is easy to see causal relations using the diagram of the Twelvefold Interdependent Co-origination. The Becoming Wheel, that of samsara turned by karma in the center, ends in suffering through stored karma and causes nescience,leading to becoming and thirst,leading in turn to new karma.

By stilling karma one can still stored karma and enter into nirvana (no-wind of karma). It is the world of dharma/Dharma (reality/truth) equanimity and emptiness (no self, no clinging). There for the first time one can attain awakening and prognosis (insight, solution) from the ego-view and ego-clinging.

Cultivation from samsara to nirvana advances like the new moon to the full moon, and further practice (continued cultivation) makes samadhi/nirvana easier and shifts from the conventional truth to the ultimate truth by shifting the samsara mode to nirvana mode, like shifting the shift key of the computer keyboard.

Note 1. Formations (sankhara, from san+karma) are the old or stored (heredity)/new or present (action/habit) three karmas (physical/verbal/mental).

2. Suffering is said to be the universal, fundamental one: Four Sufferings: birth, sickness, aging, death, and the individual secondary Four: not acquiring the desired, parting from the beloved, meeting with the hated, called the Eight Sufferings with the previous Four.

3. Nescience (a-vidya: a-videre) is no-witness of selfless nature of phenomena in the Law of Inter-dependent Co-origination, which is only resolved by stilling karma (nirvana) and awakening from it (beginningless or long night of nescience).

 4. For a further detailed explanation of Twelvefold Interdependent Co-origination, please visit:











註 1. 十二支縁起については下記をご覧ください:
     3. 平成30年1月13日仏法山禅源寺での魯参の法話の要点を同寺ブログの載せたです。
  4. 輪廻は業(行為・習慣・遺伝)の変化世界であり涅槃(無風:業風に吹かれ動揺することのない境地)は誰にでも達成できる(坐禅は新旧の三業:身口意を静止)ことを知ってもらう為にここに転載しました。






















The above Super Moon pictures were taken by Mr. Noriyuki Otsuka,

living in Shimoda, Shizuoka Prefecture in Japan,

who often contribute his pictures here.



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Sitting Striving: Shedding Suffering


Good morning!


We have a bright beautiful morning after a fortnight since the winter solstice, gaining daytime. We usually say, “Happy New Year!” Shall we seek happy happening, desiring brain expansion or discarding this planet as I mentioned last week? Desire, divisiveness, and delusion are the triple poisons that destroy us, individually, socially, and environmentally.


When Dogen was reading a Buddhist scripture in China, a monk with a tattered paper robe asked him, “For what purpose are you reading?” Dogen said, “I want to know the Awakened Way.” He asked, “For what?” Dogen replied, “I want to help people.” “Ultimately for what?” he asked. Dogen stopped reading and devoted himself to sitting in Zazen, witnessing the ultimate goal.


Dogen wrote: “To learn the Awakened Way is to learn the self. To learn the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be verified by all dharmas. To be verified by all dharmas is to drop off body and mind of the self and of others. There is the trace of awakening ceased and at rest. Traceless awakening is furthered on and on.” Awakening in nirvana goes on, calm and constant.


Someone said, “Abolish the word war, instead use mass killing.” There is no “holy” killing. Abolish “populism” for “egoism.” Abolish “prime minister” for “prime public servant.” Abolish “commander-in-chief” for “servant-in-chief.” In nirvana the triple poisons, all evil karmas, all sins and sufferings, fall away. So, we may say for all, “Nirvana New Year!”















Mt. Fuji from Iwamotoyama Park by Fuji City

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