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We talk about the awakened mind being "ordinary". Many hear this and immediately perceive the meaning as "I am a Buddha and there is nothing to be done. Things are perfect as they are." To such a statement Eido Roshi would say “Not incorrect”, which was a nice way of saying in this situation, the statement had “missed it”. Similar to the misunderstanding of what “ordinary” mind points too, is the statement that “we are already Buddha”. Not incorrect, however, for our day to day lives, it is better said that “we are all intrinsically Buddha”. The word “intrinsically” is a key point here and ensures we understand that this truth requires effort and realization. The statement cuts through our self-doubt and reassures us that we are capable of being something exquisitely beautiful and loving. Our Buddha Nature is our purest state of being and has many names, in many different traditions. The names don't matter, the realization of these designations does. My Christian brothers and sisters may call this state "Christ Consciousness" while others may call it "union with Brahma". So are we already awakened and already Buddha? Are things already perfect therefore there is no need to aspire towards realization? I hope you explore that question in your day to day life, and find your own Dharma. ... See MoreSee Less

We talk about the awakened mind being ordinary. Many hear this and immediately perceive the meaning as I am a Buddha and there is nothing to be done. Things are perfect as they are. To such a statement Eido Roshi would say “Not incorrect”, which was a nice way of saying in this situation, the statement had “missed it”. Similar to the misunderstanding of what “ordinary” mind points too, is the statement that “we are already Buddha”. Not incorrect, however, for our day to day lives, it is better said that “we are all intrinsically Buddha”. The word “intrinsically” is a key point here and ensures we understand that this truth requires effort and realization. The statement cuts through our self-doubt and reassures us that we are capable of being something exquisitely beautiful and loving. Our Buddha Nature is our purest state of being and has many names, in many different traditions. The names dont matter, the realization of these designations does. My Christian brothers and sisters may call this state Christ Consciousness while others may call it union with Brahma. So are we already awakened and already Buddha? Are things already perfect therefore there is no need to aspire towards realization? I hope you explore that question in your day to day life, and find your own Dharma.

What is the commitment to Zen Practice? Your life, nothing less. When asked what Zen Practice is, I always reply "life". There is no real seperation between Zen Practice and so called everyday life, they are one in the same. This being said, to truly live life we must be present, moment by moment, day by day. However, even when we fall back into the world of samsara and become entangled in the briars of delusion, we are still practicing.
The designation of the word "practice" is dynamic. There really is no practicing, we are "practice" itself. Even as we symbolically sit in formal meditation, with our legs folded, robes on, head shaved, spine straight, eye down and hands glasped, there is no true difference between that and sitting in traffic, or yard work on the weekend. Even though nothing is other than "it", we must strive to realize this truth. We must strive to transform the self imposed delineation of the dualistic mind while also embracing it as none other than "it". It sounds confusing when it is processed through the conceptual mind. If we allow this truth to wash over us, without grasping at meaning, we recognize its truth effortlessly. Dharmas are endless, and relinquishing our attachments allows us to remain fluid as the moving stream of phenomenon ebbs and flows.
To realize practice we must simultaneously apply ourselves while letting go of the idea of application. When our practice becomes equally the mundane and the sacred, and yet beyond the mundane and the sacred, we are beginning to realize the truth of Zen. Beware though, if one thinks ordinary mind is somehow ordinary, you have missed it.
... See MoreSee Less

What is the commitment to Zen Practice? Your life, nothing less. When asked what Zen Practice is, I always reply life. There is no real seperation between Zen Practice and so called everyday life, they are one in the same. This being said, to truly live life we must be present, moment by moment, day by day. However,  even when we fall back into the world of samsara and become entangled in the briars of delusion, we are still practicing. 
The designation of the word practice is dynamic. There really is no practicing, we are practice itself. Even as we symbolically sit in formal meditation, with our legs folded, robes on, head shaved, spine straight, eye down and hands glasped, there is no true difference between that and sitting in traffic, or yard work on the weekend. Even though nothing is other than it, we must strive to realize this truth. We must strive to transform the self imposed delineation of the dualistic mind while also embracing it as none other than it. It sounds confusing when it is processed through the conceptual mind. If we allow this truth to wash over us, without grasping at meaning, we recognize its truth effortlessly. Dharmas are endless, and relinquishing our attachments allows us to remain fluid as the moving stream of phenomenon ebbs and flows.
To realize practice we must simultaneously apply ourselves while letting go of the idea of application. When our practice becomes equally the mundane and the sacred, and yet beyond the mundane and the sacred, we are beginning to realize the truth of Zen. Beware though, if one thinks ordinary mind is somehow ordinary, you have missed it.

The new zendo takes shape. ... See MoreSee Less

 

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Calendar

May
26
Sun
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
May 26 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

May
28
Tue
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
May 28 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

Zen Meditation – Friends Meeting House @ Blue Mountain Zendo@Quaker Meeting House
May 28 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

 

Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible, or contact the zendo to let them know you will need a set to use. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering  is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.

During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round.The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk and the service is closed with chanting.

Jun
4
Tue
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
Jun 4 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

Zen Meditation – Friends Meeting House @ Blue Mountain Zendo@Quaker Meeting House
Jun 4 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

 

Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible, or contact the zendo to let them know you will need a set to use. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering  is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.

During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round.The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk and the service is closed with chanting.

Jun
11
Tue
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
Jun 11 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

Zen Meditation – Friends Meeting House @ Blue Mountain Zendo@Quaker Meeting House
Jun 11 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

 

Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible, or contact the zendo to let them know you will need a set to use. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering  is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.

During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round.The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk and the service is closed with chanting.

Jun
18
Tue
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
Jun 18 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

Zen Meditation – Friends Meeting House @ Blue Mountain Zendo@Quaker Meeting House
Jun 18 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

 

Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible, or contact the zendo to let them know you will need a set to use. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering  is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.

During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round.The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk and the service is closed with chanting.

Jun
25
Tue
Zazenkai at Blue mountain Zendo Koryuji @ Blue Mountain Zendo
Jun 25 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Blue Mountain Zendo is celebrating its new move to the Poconos in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a focused on change and creating new pathways. Students who are new to Zen Practice should arrive fifteen minutes early for meditation instructions. Blue Mountain Zendo does offer cushion sets; however, it is a good idea to obtain a personal set if possible. Having your own set will allow you the opportunity to sit both with the sangha (group) as well as alone when at home or work, however, please ask for the appropriate color and size before ordering. Also to note, if you cannot sit on the floor due to a medical condition, chairs are available. If done correctly, sitting in a chair is no different than sitting on the floor.
An offering is traditional for those visiting for the first time. This offering is symbolic of the “open” and “giving” nature of the new student and his/her recognition of the value of the teachings.
During Zazenkai (Extended Zen Service) the han (wooden block) is struck for the first time to start the beginning of the service. The ino then announces the first chant and the service begins. We chant in both Japanese, Pali and English to show respect to Zen’s roots and lineage. After the last chant, kinhin or walking meditation begins which will be repeated at various times during the service. The bell is struck and the sangha sits down to begin zazen (seated meditation) practice. During Zazen we become, and remain still throughout the round while watching our breath or working on our Koan. Our eyes become half closed and focused downward to the floor in front of us to avoid distractions. The bell is struck (dink) after 25 minutes and to allow new students the option to stand up and face the wall or adjust their posture. The bell is struck once again after 10 minutes, informing those who are standing to please be seated. The final bell struck is at the 40 minute mark to signal the cessation of the sitting round. The sangha then does walking meditation or Kin-hin which will last for fifteen minutes. When kinhin is completed, the sangha once again is seated.
To conclude, Rev. Joriki Ryuun Baker, Osho may offer a Dharma Talk followed by the close of the service.

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Zen

Bodhidharma’s Definition Of Zen Practice

“A special transmission outside the scriptures; Not depending upon words and letters; Directly pointing at the mind-heart of man; Seeing into one’s nature and attaining Buddhahood.”

Zen Practice is the skin, bone and marrow of the Buddha’s teaching. It cuts through the vines and briars which have long entangled us.

As Bodhidharma pointed out, Zen is not based on intellectual pursuits, and is unattainable to those who attempt to understand it via mere scholarly persuits. However, some will push forward with tenacity and perseverance, and these students will realize the wondrous joy of the Dharma. Zen Practice is for those who must know the truth, and are willing to push through the many obstacles that are the catalysts to awakening.

Zazenkai

Zazenkai (meditation service) provides an opportunity for a student to intensify and deepen their practice through the experience of longer periods of uninterrupted zazen and walking meditation.

Throughout zazenkai we use the exact techniques that are followed  in a Rinzai Zen Monastery. During zazenkai we practice zazen (seated meditation), chanting , walking meditation (kin-hin), silence, jihatsu (formal eating), dokusan (private meeting w/teacher) and to conclude, a Dharma Talk (sermon) is given by Joriki Dat Baker.

After closing, tea and fellowship are offered in the lounge.

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