New audio dharma talk by Kosen Gregory Snyder

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma talk by Kosen Gregory Snyder (2020/10/03)

New audio dharma talk by Chimyo Atkinson

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Dharma talk by Chimyo Atkinson (2020/10/24)

New audio dharma talk by Spring Washam

Back in 2018, visiting teacher Spring Washam offered a dharma talk at Brooklyn Zen Center, in which she shared about love, wisdom and strength. This talk is now available to listen, share and download at the BZC Audio Dharma Podcast.

The BZC Audio Dharma Podcast is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Spring Washam is a well-known meditation teacher, author and visionary leader based in California and Peru. She is the author of A Fierce Heart: Finding Strength, Courage and Wisdom in Any Moment. Spring is considered a pioneer in bringing mindfulness-based healing practices to diverse communities. She is one of the founders and core teachers at the East Bay Meditation Center, located in downtown Oakland, CA.  She received extensive training by Jack Kornfield, is a member of the teacher’s council at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in northern California, and has practiced and studied Buddhist philosophy in both the Theravada and Tibetan schools of Buddhism for the last 20 years. In addition to being a teacher, she is also a shamanic practitioner and has studied indigenous healing practices for over a decade. She is the founder of Lotus Vine Journeysan organization that blends indigenous healing practices with Buddhist  wisdom. More information about Spring Washam and her offerings is available here.

Audio dharma by Spring Washam (2018/03/28)

 

New audio dharma talks from three-day sesshin

The BZC sangha came together in October for a three-day online sesshin  led from Ancestral Heart Zen Monastery by teacher Kosen Gregory Snyder and from California by teacher Teah Strozer. The dharma talks offered during the sesshin are now available on the BZC Audio Dharma Podcast.

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Dharma talk by Kosen Greg Snyder: Sesshin Day 1 (2020/10/16)

Dharma talk by Teah Strozer: Sesshin Day 2 (2020/10/17)

Dharma talk by Kosen Greg Snyder: Sesshin Day 3 (2020/10/18)

New audio dharma talk by Kosen Gregory Snyder

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma by Kosen Gregory Snyder (2020/09/19)

 

New audio dharma talk by Ian Case

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma by Ian Case (2020/06/20)

New audio dharma talk by Yoko Ohashi

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma talk by Yoko Ohashi (2020/02/15)

New audio dharma talk by Kosen Gregory Snyder

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma talk by Kosen Gregory Snyder (2018/03/17)

New audio dharma talk by DaRa Williams

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Dharma talk by DaRa Williams (2020/09/20)

Embodying Refuge: the 2020 online fall practice period

A message from the BZC dharma teachers:

Dear Sangha,

We are very excited to begin our Fall 2020 practice period on Wednesday, October 14th. We will be opening with a ceremony at 7:30pm that evening and hope all can join.

The theme of the practice period this semester will be Embodying Refuge. We aspire to collectively drop this intention into the center of our hearts, bodies, and practice in order to discern it for ourselves and live it for others.

As with all elements of our practice, refuge cannot be fully realized without the clarifying and harmonizing coming together of sangha. Sometimes this meeting is felt as joyous, easeful, and intimate. Other times it is experienced as frustrating, painful, and distancing. May we always welcome honest dialogue and allow the sangha to be a mirror to our minds that grasp our views as the limits of who we are in the world.

As always, we encourage our sangha to live in accord with the six paramitas, sixteen precepts, and four brahmaviharas. These intentions that anchor the bodhisattva path offer an opportunity to align our views, moral behavior, and emotional habits with the dharma of liberation. These are the bedrock of our community, and so our devotion to them is critical to illuminating refuge.

We recognize a practice period in this time will be all the more challenging as the upcoming months will likely continue with words and actions that cause pain, conflict, and violence. We know from speaking with you all that this leaves many of us with a sense of heartbreak, confusion, anger, and hopelessness.

We also know that your practice and relationships with one another have allowed connection and joy to penetrate these wider difficulties. Each of you independently and all of you collectively have been an inspiration and deep motivation for the both of us as well. We want to celebrate your commitment to one another and the dharma, carrying it forward into this next practice phase of our lives together. We have no doubt we will all need one another. We also have no doubt we will do our very best to be fully and lovingly present with one another.

Ours is a time for sangha. It is a time for leaning into the cultivation of a community devoted to courageous dialogue, compassionate action, and liberation. It is a time to take the backwards step and clarify our views, intentions, and values all the way to the bone so we can step into the fire of this life with clear discernment and fearless love for all beings without exception.

The months to come will not be without fear. They will not be without a desire to coat our minds in distraction. They will not be without impulses to attack those seen as dangers. They will not be without flashes of purposelessness and despair. However, because of our sangha we know they will also not be without courage, without forgiveness, without truthful conversations about how to alleviate suffering, and without a desire to hold one another in love and a shared commitment to be free.

So let’s never forget that returning an urgent text or phone call might be the difference between despair and courage. We have to remember that our presence at a sit or a dharma talk or a class provides the strong undercarriage of another’s practice. Let’s keep a compassionate eye out for sangha siblings who might have lost work and be struggling with an electric bill or rent, so we can meet that struggle with meaningful support. Let’s make sure all those who wish to be connected are connected to this community, that no one is left wondering how to enter. It will take each and every one of us living out our bodhisattva vow as attentive action for this to be so.

We will certainly make mistakes and miss opportunities for offering refuge. So let’s vow now together to return to one another when we do. Let’s make sure we are attending to all who are wanting to be in this sangha together. Let’s do our best to live the refuge we ourselves so deeply need. To this end, we will be offering the opportunity for everyone to join practice period dharma groups to study and to be in more intimate community together. When communicating your intentions regarding the practice period, please be sure to let us know if you want to be a part of a dharma group.

Per usual, we invite you to fill out the Practice Period Commitment Form. Deliberately clarifying your intentions and having them witnessed by dharma teachers provides the gift of accountability and bolsters our commitments to the three jewels. We are always inspired by your efforts and look forward to reading your practice commitments for the upcoming months. Please submit the Practice Period Commitment Form by no later than October 11th.

We look forward to practice together and hope to see all of you, whether online or in person, in the months to come. We are grateful to our ancestors for their efforts and love in making this possible for us. May each of you remain safe and healthy, find joy and ease as we move forward together in practice.

With love and appreciation,
Laura and Kosen

New audio dharma talk by Ian Case

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Dharma talk by Ian case (2020/07/18)

New audio dharma talk by Yoko Ohashi

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Dharma talk by Yoko Ohashi (2020/05/23)

New Audio Dharma from August Three-Day Sesshin

This summer, the BZC sangha came together for a three-day online sesshin led from Ancestral Heart Zen Monastery by teachers Kosen Gregory Snyder and Laura O’Loughlin. The sesshin, with the theme Taking Refuge in Original Heart, followed a gentle schedule, alternating periods of zazen (sitting meditation), kinhin (walking meditation) along with guided meditation practices, soji, service and dharma talks.

Dharma by Kosen Greg Snyder: Sesshin Day 1 (2020/08/14)

Dharma by Laura O’Loughlin: Sesshin Day 2 (2020/08/15)

Dharma by Kosen Greg Snyder: Sesshin Day 3 (2020/08/16)

Mutual Aid Kitchen Practice at BZC

During the last few weeks, sangha members were busy making some classic BZC recipes to support Brooklyn Saints, a mutual aid group that provides food, water, and other supplies to support the social justice rallies and marches in our community, as well as to homeless shelters.

This was an opportunity to come together as a sangha (in limited numbers, of course) and to use the kitchen space for the last few weeks before the closing of Boundless Mind Temple, our spiritual home in the heart of Brooklyn for the past decade.

Here are some images and words from the Mutual Aid Kitchen Practice at BZC.

It has been both heartwarming and bittersweet to be back in the Boundless Mind kitchen and practicing in person with sangha again.  It has also been very rewarding to put our soup skills to use in feeding the hungry at this difficult time for so many in the Brooklyn community– I feel like this is my final exam after studying for so many hours as a fukuten preparing meals for the sangha!  That kitchen was built to train us in compassion, and it’s deeply moving to see it’s final meals be used to deliver compassion to those who need it most right now.

Don Rider, Fukuten (pronouns he/him)

It was such a gift to be back in the kitchen at BZC, being present with the joys and difficulties that arise in each moment of practice. The generosity at the heart of the BZC kitchen has had such a meaningful impact on my life. Learning to bring gentleness and care to every aspect of preparing the meal, from chopping vegetables to ladling soup to drying dishes, helps connect me to the body’s wisdom. Practicing in the kitchen with other sangha members, feeling my feet on the floor as I walk, and the water on my hands as I wash them, I become more intimate with that wisdom, trusting it more and more.

Leila Mohr (pronouns she/hers)

“I have found kitchen practice in this time to be an opportunity to work with impermanence in a deeply multifaceted way. It is the simple impermanence that comes with preparing and consuming food. It is a reminder of the current precarity of our collective situation that inspired Don and Kayla to organize this practice. And, finally, it is the bittersweet chance to spend some last time in the 505 Carroll space before beginning a time of transition as a sangha.”

Owen Bell

 

the soup

prepared with warm hands to

warm hands

Daniel Bachrach (pronouns he/him)

Schedule updates

Please note that our online meditation schedule is suspended for the Labor Day weekend (Saturday, September 5, through Monday, September 7). After this, our morning and evening sessions will only take place Monday through Friday, although there will be a meditation period before the dharma talk on Saturdays. Please see the complete online meditation schedule below.

In addition, we will now be offering meditation instruction every second Saturday of the month at 9am. The Well-Being Service will resume September 8. Saturday dharma talks will resume September 12, with a talk by visiting teacher DaRa Williams.

To join these online offerings, please contact Flo Lunn here in advance.

Please note that Undoing Whiteness and Oppression (UWO) will not be holding meetings this fall. During this time, UWO will be developing a more formal curriculum, which will hopefully be available at the beginning of 2021. In the meantime, feel free to reach out to UWO here with any questions or concerns.

Online meditation schedule 

Please note that all times are NY EST

Monday-Friday

Morning meditation:

7:15am — session opens

7:30am — zazen (sitting meditation)

8:00am — Robe Chant and Short Service (PDF available here)

8:15am — session ends

Evening meditation:

6:15pm — session opens

6:30pm — zazen (sitting meditation)

7:00pm — session ends

Saturday

9:00am – meditation instruction (second Saturday of the month only)

10:20am – zazen

10:50am – break

11:00am – dharma talk

If possible, please try to “arrive” 5 minutes before zazen begins, although you are welcome to join anytime during the period.

New audio dharma by Laura O’Loughlin

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma talk by Laura O’Loughlin (2020/07/25)

New audio dharma by Yoko Ohashi

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma by Yoko Ohashi (2020-06-27)

New dharma talks by Tenshin Reb Anderson

For the past few years, Tenshin Reb Anderson has come to Brooklyn Zen Center (BZC) to offer dharma talks and to guide our sangha in meditation retreats. Traveling all the way from California, where he is based, Reb has been a steady supporter of our community, holding us in practice each year for five-day sesshins during the month of June. This year, unfortunately, he was not able to come to Brooklyn, as it was planned, due to the ongoing Covid 19 pandemic.

We would like to invite you, nevertheless, to practice with Reb by listening to the dharma talks he offered during the 2019 sesshin at BZC. Last year’s retreat was focused on Zen Practice and Buddha Activity:

“An old time buddha said, “earth, grass trees, all living beings are engaged in buddha activity.” Buddha activity is the unceasing process of freeing all beings so they may live in peace and harmony. The Buddha ancestors called this Buddha activity zazen. In this retreat we will study, practice and realize this great activity.”

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. A $10 donation per audio dharma talk is encouraged. Thank you!

About Tenshin Reb Anderson

Tenshin Reb Anderson is a lineage-holder in the Soto Zen tradition. Born in Mississipi, he grew up in Minnesota and left advanced study in mathematics and Western psychology to come to San Francisco Zen Center in 1967. He practiced with Suzuki Roshi, who ordained him as a priest in 1970 and gave him the name Tenshin Zenki (“Naturally Real, The Whole Works”). He received dharma transmission in 1983 and served as abbot of San Francisco Zen Center’s three training centers (City Center, Green Gulch Farm and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center) from 1986 to 1995. Tenshin Roshi continues to teach at Zen Center, living with his family at Green Gulch Farm. He is author of Warm Smiles from Cold Mountains: Dharma Talks on Zen Meditation and Being Upright: Zen Meditation and the Bodhisattva Precepts.

To find out more about Tenshin Reb Anderson, please visit his website here.

New audio dharma by Kosen Greg Snyder

The BZC audio dharma is available free of charge and made possible by the donations we receive. You can donate to BZC here. Thank you!

Audio dharma by Kosen Greg Snyder (2020/07/11)