Pretty much the only thing I enjoyed on Monday was Young Urban Zen, again glad to be able to cast aside pre-occupation and be present with the thirty-five or so people who filled the room with some uplifting energy. Yesterday, I was delighted to be able to find an online version of Chapter 16 of the Lotus Sutra, which Vicki wants to chant on Wednesdays for noon service; she indulged me in my preference for this version of the verse, being the one I have memorised, over the official Soto Shu translation. I am really looking forward to chanting this out loud.
This morning we had the pleasure of doing morning service in a partly renovated Buddha Hall, as half of the new tatamis were delivered yesterday. They are a strikingly different colour, though eventually they will dry out to the same golden hue, and have a lingering smell of grass, like good green tea. It was probably the most fragrant service we have done for many years. In addition they are firmer underfoot, and it felt nice as well to be the first person to bow on the mat where I was standing. Having celebrated Dogen's birthday yesterday - another joy was to be chanting the Genjo Koan as part of that - we did the well-being service this morning, and as we were chanting the Lovingkindness Meditation, I was thinking of the friends who have been telling me of their own predicaments, most of whom I have not had the space and time to respond to in the last few days, and opening up to them. Settling, settling.
|Not hard to see the difference between the new and the old|