The Missouri Zen Center

April-May, 2006

The Missouri Zen Center
220 Spring Avenue
Webster Groves, MO 63119
(314) 961-6138

Coming Events

New MZC Board Members Elected

At the March 11 Annual Meeting, Kathy Albers and John Hale were elected to three year terms on the MZC Board of Directors. They join Rosan, who as our teacher is always a Board member and the Executive Director, and Karo, Meiku, Kuryo, and Sheryll Coulter, each of whom is in the second year of a three-year term.

At the Board meeting on March 12, the MZC officers for this year were chosen: President: Kuryo

  • Vice President: Karo
  • Secretary: Meiku
  • Treasurer: Sheryll Coulter
  • If you have any questions or concerns for the Board or any of the officers, please let them know. Board meetings, which are open to all

    members of the sangha, are generally held on the second Sunday of the month following samu. They usually start around 9:30 am. For updates on the exact date each month, check the MZC listserv or ask a Board member.

    Great Sky Sesshin

    The Great Sky Sesshin, a Soto Zen-style sesshin bringing together teachers and lay participants from all over the Midwest to deepen their practice, will be held at Hokyoji in southeast Minnesota from August 12 through 19. Each day will include zazen, sutra chanting, dharma talks, dokusan, formal oriyoki meals and work. Teachers will include Dokai Georgesen (Hokyoji), Tonen O'Conner (Milwaukee Zen Center), Zuiko Redding (Cedar Rapids Zen Center), Genmyo Smith (Prairie Zen Center in Champaign, IL), and Rosan. Cost is $280 for a bunk bed (with air mattress) or $230 for camping. For more info please go to or contact Tonen O'Conner at or 414-963-0526.

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    Sangha Life

    Vesak Day

    The 2006 Vesak Day celebration of the birth, enlightenment and death of the Buddha will be held on Sunday, May 21 from 10:00 am to 4:00 PM at the Mid-America Buddhist Association (MABA) monastery in Augusta, MO. It is sponsored annually by the Buddhist Council of Greater St. Louis. The event is free and open to the public.

    This year's special guests include: Ven. Buddhayanandho Bhikkhu, Chairman, Buddhaya Nandharam Temple in Las Vegas, NV; Ven. U. Ganasiri of Chanmyay Satipatthana Vihara, Springfield, IL; and Ven. Dang Tam of the Vietnamese Buddhist Temple, South St. Louis.

    Founded in 1999, the Buddhist Council of Greater St. Louis consists of 12 local Buddhist groups that meet monthly to discuss secular and spiritual issues and to organize year-round activities. The Council is comprised of the Blue Beryl Dharma Center, Chanmyay Satipatthana Vihara, Dragon Flower Chían Temple, Fo Guang Shan St. Louis Buddhist Center, Humble Minds Meditation Group, MABA Buddhist Monastery, Missouri Zen Center, St. Louis Insight Meditation Group, Sri Lankan Buddhist Group, Thai Buddhist Temple, Do Ngak Choling Tibetan Buddhist group, Vietnamese Buddhist Association of St. Louis, Vietnamese Dharma Study Group, and Vipassana Buddhist Church.

    Vesak Day Schedule of Events

    • 9:30 AM Arrival and parking
    • 10:00 AM Opening Ceremony, led by the Monastics
    • 10:15 AM Bathing Buddha Rite, led by Ven. Ji Ru, Chían Master
    • 10:45 AM Guided Meditation led by Ven. U. Gunasiri Bhikkhu
    • 11:50 AM Vegetarian Lunch
    • Music and Entertainment during lunch:
      Cellist Mitsu Saito; Music by John Goldstein; Joe the Juggler; Dragon Dance by Vietnamese Group
    • 1:30 PM Walking Meditation to the Kuan Yin Pavilion
    • 2:30 PM Dharma Talks:
      Ven. Direk Buddhayanandho Bhikkhu in English
      Ven. Dang Tam - in Vietnamese at the Kuan Yin Pavilion
    • 3:15 PM Q & A/Discussion
    • 4:00 PM Metta Bhavana & Closing Ceremony, led by Ando McMaster
      • Directions: From St. Louis, take Hwy 40 (I-64) west over the Missouri River Bridge. The next exit after the bridge is Hwy 94 to Augusta. Take a left and go approx. 25 miles on Hwy 94 southwest and follow the signs to MABA located near Augusta. See MABA Website at:

        For more information contact: Don Sloane 314-576-4900, e-mail

        Spring Garden Sale, May 13

        The Zen Center's 12th annual Spring Garden Sale fundraiser will be held at the Center on Saturday, May 13 from 8 AM until noon. This is one of the Zen Center's two yearly fundraising events, and we need your help to make it a success! New offerings for this year's Sale include

    containers, potting mix for container plants, a make-your-own-container-garden service (purchase a container, potting mix, and plants, and volunteers will prepare the container for you), garden tools, and who knows what else. The hanging baskets of colorful annuals are expected to make their second appearance at the Sale. Of course we'll have many beautiful hostas and other plants for shade and sun.

    Here's how to help us make this fundraiser a success.

    Digging up and potting plants for the Sale

    Every Saturday morning during the month of April and on May 6, weather permitting, join us around 9 AM (following the 8am sitting) and help us dig up and pot-up the plants offered for sale. Be advised that this can be wet or muddy work. Bring garden gloves if you use them; the Zen Center will provide other needed tools. We'll work till about lunchtime. Even if you've never touched a live plant before, come and help; we can teach you everything you need to know.

    You can also donate special plants from your own gardens, such as divisions of hostas and other perennials, unusual annuals or house plants, and so forth. If you do this, please be sure to label your plants ... include the same information as you received when you obtained them if possible. We can't sell it if we don't know what it is. The Zen Center can supply pots and potting soil. If you have questions about the suitability of your plants for the Sale, please talk with Kuryo.

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    April-May, 2006

    A Publication of the Missouri Zen Center

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    Sangha Life

    Continued from Page 2

    Working before, during, and after the Sale

    We need lots of volunteers to help us on the day of the sale, so if at all possible, please set aside some time on May 13 to work with us! We need people as early as 6 AM to help set up the sales tables and move plants to their sale locations. We will need more people around 7 to 7:30 AM as our first customers begin to arrive. Sales will begin at 8am. Ways to help include: working at the make-your-own-container-garden service area; answering questions about the plants; staffing the cashier's table; carting plants to customers' cars; rearranging the displays as plants are sold; making and serving tea; making bagel runs; and answering questions about our practice. Please show up as early as you can. Those of us who have worked at past Sales know how pleasant it is to be outside early on a spring morning. If you can't show up until 9 AM or later, please do come then. You can relieve someone who has to leave early. Even if you can't come till 11 AM or later, please still come. After the sale ends, we'll need people to help move the remaining plants out of the front yard and take down the work stations.

    Publicizing the Sale to family, friends, and co-workers

    Another way to help us is to tell all the gardeners you know about our Sale. Anyone who likes hostas will want to check out our Sale for its large number of different varieties. We carry other plants which like the same conditions as hostas (partial to medium shade and average to moist soil) and look nice planted with them. We carry some sun-loving plants as well. We'll offer hanging baskets of colorful annual plants, some for sun, some for shade. New this year will be containers, potting mix, and plants for containers, and the make-your-own-container-garden service. Included in this newsletter is a flyer you can reproduce and post at work, in your city hall or local businesses, or anywhere else where people gather. We also have a pile of flyers at the Zen Center; reproduce and distribute them to your heart's content.

    Buying plants and other items at the Sale

    If you have a garden or know someone who does, there is one final way you can help the Zen Center: you can buy some plants or other garden-related items at the Sale. Beautify your garden and strengthen the Zen Center at the same time!

    Insights From Inside Published

    by Kalen

    The prison project, Inside Dharma, is pleased to announce that our book Insights from Inside has been published.

    Insights from Inside is a beautiful small book (about 140 pages) which examines what prison is, what's it like inside, and what Buddhist practice looks like inside prison. Many of the articles were written by prisoners. Also included are articles by Rosan, Shoken, Victoria Fortner, Vickie McKenzie, Ven. Chodron, Robina, Tonen, Zuiko, and others. The art work is mostly done by prisoners. The back cover was done by our own Carol Corey. Note the bird in the cage, done by Joe the Juggler.

    You can buy a copy of this book from the Missouri Zen Center for only $10 or order directly from me. We hope to do a few "readings" around town watch the Zen Center listserv for more info.

    Live supra-mundane life

    by Rosan Daido

    Mundane problems cannot be solved by mundane means based on matter, power and ego. These are the three poisons (greed, hatred and delusion) driven by the karma-machine, doomed to the three calamities (discrimination, exploitation and extermination). They can be solved by supra-mundane methods based on unsurpassed awakening, unconditioned peace and a-karma. These are attained by the three learnings (morality, concentration and prognosis) of mind, life and eco, conducive to the three blisses (equality, love and peace). The supra-mundane life is in solid, serene sitting, stopping all karmas.

    Special Events in June

    Mark your calendars for the following special events to be held in June. Updated information will be posted at the Zen Center and on the Zen Center's listserv.

    Saturday, June 3 starting at 1 PM the Buddhist Council of Greater St. Louis will hold Change Your Mind Day at the Chain of Rocks Bridge in St. Louis (accessed from Riverview Blvd. just south of the Riverview exit off I-270). This event was begun in New York City's Central Park by Tricycle magazine in the 1990s, when they sponsored a gathering of several different Buddhist groups who offered information on their practices to the general public. Now many different cities, including St. Louis, hold similar events on the first Saturday in June. The speakers and scheduling are still being worked out, but expect to meditate on the Chain of Rocks Bridge, one of the longest pedestrian and bicycle bridges in the country.

    On Friday evening, June 30 Ven. Thubten Chodron will be giving a talk in the St. Louis area. Details are still being worked out. More info will be available in the June-July Sangha Life as well as at the Zen Center and on the listserv. Ven. Chodron is a delightful and insightful speaker, so don't miss this chance to hear her!

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    A Publication of the Missouri Zen Center

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    Sangha Life

    Change to Heart Sutra & Homage Chant

    During his March visit to St. Louis, Rosan made a change to his translation of the Heart Sutra, which we chant every morning at the Zen Center. He explained that he had, without realizing it, left out a phrase when he made the original translation. That phrase is now included in the Heart Sutra chant.

    The change is as follows. In the section beginning "Therefore, in no grasping one lives in no mind-hindrance, relying on the prajnaparamita of bodhisattvas," the next line now reads: "Because there is no mind hindrance [and no fear], one settles in nirvana, transcending the perverted views." The phrase in brackets is the added phrase.

    Rosan has also changed the number of times we chant the homage to all Buddhas, which is done on Sunday morning following the recitation of the lineage. Instead of chanting this homage three times, we now chant it only once. Rosan made this change to bring our service in line with other Zen centers in our lineage.

    Please join us for sitting and chanting every morning!

    Global System Weblog

    Upon Rosan's request sangha member Dave Achilleus has set up the Global System weblog. The purpose of the weblog is to provide a central location for information critical to understanding the global problematique (described by Rosan in several publications) and how to respond to it.

    At present the weblog is divided into 3 categories:

    1. Articles - these are pieces written by other people in environmental news and posted to this site, with all attributions.
    2. Resources - at present, links to other websites offering more specific information on a local, national and global scale.
    3. Purpose - pieces written specifically to address the need for such a project and its extension to our Buddhist practice.

    Sangha members are welcome to contribute to the weblog and can do so in two different ways. The first is to send the information to Dave ( or to Rosan by email (or give it to one of them at the Zen Center if in print) and it will be posted as soon as possible.

    The second is to be registered by Dave on the weblog so that you can post information at your convenience. Dave will:

    1. assign you a username and password - these are used to log into the Movable Type system.
    2. give you basic instructions for creating a new entry - simply, how to navigate the interface for posting your entry.

    For more information, contact Dave at the above email.

    Global Community Website

    by Rosan Daido

    Please visit and comment on the new website which carries eco news, etc. (other articles planned later on) to share them and to build our common Global Community:

    If you have news, info, ideas, etc. please post there or forward them to me (

    Please join us in making our Global Community forum interesting, instructive, creative and constructive.

    Zen Center E-mail List

    All members and friends of the sangha are invited to subscribe to the Missouri Zen Center e-mail list. To subscribe, send an e-mail message from the address you wish to use for list messages to:

    The message field should remain blank.

    You will receive a message asking you to confirm your subscription. Follow the directions in that message and your address will then be added to the list. If you encounter difficulties, consult the list owner at this address:

    Regular Zendo Schedule


    6:20-7:00 am Zazen
    7:00-7:20 am Service (sutras)
    7:20-8:00 am Zazen
    8:00-8:10 am Kinhin
    8:10-8:30 am Zazen
    8:30 am Talk/discussion, work period, tea

    You are welcome to come throughout the morning, but please do not enter the zendo during zazen. Enter quietly at other times.

    6:00-7:30 pm Zazen & Yoga


    6:00-6:40 am Zazen
    11:00-11:40 am Zazen
    6:30-7:00 pm Instruction
    7:00-7:20 pm Zazen
    7:20-9:00 pm Discussion/questions


    6:00-6:40 am Zazen
    11:00-11:40 am Zazen
    7:00-7:40 pm Zazen
    7:40-9:00 pm Tea/discussion


    6:00-6:40 am Zazen
    11:00-11:40 am Zazen
    7:00-7:40 pm Zazen
    After sitting Writing Practice


    6:00-6:40 am Zazen
    7:00-7:40 pm Zazen


    6:00-6:40 am Zazen
    7:00-7:40 pm Zazen


    8:00-8:40 am Zazen
    8:40-9:30 am Discussion
    10:00-10:30 am Family Sitting

    Work periods may be scheduled following zazen.
    Any changes to this schedule: please contact the Zen Center.

    April-May, 2006

    A Publication of the Missouri Zen Center