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Mt Adams Zen Buddhist Temple

 

October 2015 Newsletter
 We are a small Thien (Zen) Buddhist Temple practicing  "laughing farmer zen" - living our practice, meditating, being here - right now!
Dear ones,

Fall has started here and we are celebrating the end of a wonderful growing season.  I have listened to my first audio book, Breakfast with Buddha, and highly recommend it.  It is a fictional story about an ordinary man of they world finding a new way to look at life.  It is filled with Dharma, humor, and good storytelling.

We have a meditation retreat in October and a Precepts retreat in November.  If you plan on attending - please call the temple and enroll for the class.

Our new newsletter format is designed to make cell phone reading easier - if you have any feedback - please let us know.

May we all be well, may we all be happy, may we all know love, may we all know peace.             Thay Kozen  


We are collecting funds to build a temple
This is an architect's first concept of the new temple building   

We have raised  $4,370 in 2 months. 
WE WANT TO EXPRESS OUR APPRECIATION TO THE FOLLOWING DONORS:

Nguyễn Kim Liên, Lê Thị Hồng (Thiện Chơn)
Peggy E Wagner (Diệu Âm Lư Hội), Huỳnh Cẩn Đệ,
 Tina McNurlen, Thao-Oanh Doan, 
MK&Feyrie Southeast, Mita Beach, Sean Harbaugh, Thay Z
Members of Buu Hung Monastery,
YOU CAN DONATE DIRECTLY TO OUT TEMPLE OR GO TO  
Sadi Minh Thien's Column

Recently, I participated in a Dharma talk which involved a discussion around Buddhist teachings known as the Five Hindrances; namely sensual desire, ill will, sloth, restlessness and uncertainty.  Afterwards one of the discussion participants asked the question about what is considered most useful in combating these human conditions.  This led to a discussion regarding the 7 Factors of Enlightenment or sapta bodhyanga in Sanskrit.  This is what I would like to share in this month's Newsletter.
The 7 Factors of Enlightenment are:
1.    MINDFULNESS - Right Mindfulness is also the seventh part of the Noble Eightfold Path.  One might view it as a whole body and mind awareness, essential to releasing habits of the mind that perpetuate an illusion of a separate self.  This in turn, begins to identify and remove our judgments between likes and dislikes.
2.    INVESTIGATION - This is sometimes also referred to as the Investigation of the Dharma.  This is both an investigation into the Buddha's teachings as well as a deeper understanding of the nature of existence.  The Buddha taught his followers not to accept the teachings on blind faith but instead, to find the truth of the teachings for themselves.
3.    ENERGY - The quest for Enlightenment is not an easy path.  To be dedicated to our meditation practice, to living our lives in a mindful way in every moment and to having the curiosity and desire to find the truth of the teachings and reality for ourselves will of necessity, require an energy that is sustaining and continually renewed.
4.    HAPPINESS - Of course we all want to be happy.  It is a basic Buddhist teaching that the craving for things we think are outside of ourselves binds us to suffering.  Realizing this, we can begin to let go of cravings and find happiness.  His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama said, "Happiness is not something ready-made.  It comes from your own actions."  It's what we do, not what we get that grows happiness.
5.    TRANQUILITY - This is a result of experiencing a more joyous Happiness through our practice and living in mindful ways.  We experience Tranquility when through attention to the other Factors, we experience a calmness of body and mind consciousness.
6.    CONCENTRATION - Like Mindfulness, Right Concentration is also part of the Noble Eightfold Path.  This Factor is also referred to as samadhi where the sense of self disappears and where subject and object are absorbed into each other.  It is achieved through a slowing down of our mental activity through our consistent meditative practice.
7.    EQUANIMITY - In the Buddhist sense, Equanimity is a balance between the extremes of aversion and desire.  It is our condition when we are not pulled this way and that by what we like and dislike and we are able to remove of judgments.
In closing, we can view these 7 Factors of Enlightenment as qualities that overcome the Five Hindrances as well as help us describe, distinguish and understand the elements that are essential on the path to enlightenment. 
As such, let us all remember the Bodhisattva Vows:
Sentient beings are numberless.  I vow to save them all.
Deluding passions are inexhaustible.  I vow to end them all.   
Dharma gates are limitless.  I vow to master them all.
Buddha's Way is Supreme.  I vow to attain it.
Meditation Aids Stroke Victim

By Marissa Harshman, Columbian health reporter http://www.columbian.com/news/2015/jun/22/mediation-aids-stroke-victim-kalama-man/           Published: June 22, 2015, 6:00 AM
Rick Dobson begins every morning with meditation. He focuses on leaving yesterday behind and preparing for the challenges that lie ahead of him that day.
"There's a huge sense of dread when you wake up because you know it's going to be a fight all day long," the 58-year-old said.
Dobson's daily fights are much different than those of most people. His first fight is getting dressed - and doing so without putting his pants on backward.
"It's like lying on your back, writing above your head, backwards, and with your left hand," he said. "That's how my life is right now."
Thirteen months ago, Dobson suffered an embolic stroke caused by a blood clot. The stroke left Dobson unable to move his arm, hand, leg or foot on the left side of his body. His left hand was frozen into a claw shape, and the left side of his face was numb. His vision was distorted, his hearing muffled.
In the days and months that followed, Dobson used mindfulness meditation to help him focus on his recovery and healing. And now, more than a year after the stroke, Dobson has made significant strides, according to his physicians.
"From Dr. Milfred's perspective and my perspective, this is a pretty remarkable recovery," said Dr. Hoa Ly, director of inpatient medical services at Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center. Dr. Fatima Milfred is Dobson's neurologist at Legacy Medical Group.
But that's not to say Dobson has fully recovered physically or mentally - far from it.
"It almost turns into an invisible disability when you recover from some of the physical stuff," said Dobson, who lives in Kalama.
Mindfulness has been an asset to Dobson's continuing recovery, he said.
Mindfulness meditation helps people to become unconditionally present, maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations and surrounding environment. Mindfulness also involves acceptance, helping people to pay attention to their thoughts and feelings without judging them.
Studies have shown stroke patients who practice mindfulness have better outcomes, Ly said. After a stroke, many people are fearful, confused and angry. They also often experience mental fatigue, Ly said. Mindfulness can be used to help people stop fighting themselves and to redirect their energy toward healing, he said.
That's precisely what Dobson did.
In the days after his stoke, Dobson experienced painful spasms in his muscles. Dobson used mindfulness to cope with the spasms, control his frustration and manage his fight-or-flight reflex.
Controlling the fight-or-flight reflex has proved to be one of the most important pieces of his recovery, Dobson said. While doing a task, even just walking, something will trigger a fear, such as falling, and Dobson's body will release a shot of adrenalin. That jolt causes the aches and spasms in his muscles, Dobson said.
Through mindfulness, Dobson has been able to identify some of his triggers, such as riding in a moving car, and find ways to ease his fears.
"Having that mental process in place during the stroke was extremely important," Dobson said.
Physically, Dobson is working to build his endurance. He's found his limits for various activities - several hours when sitting and pulling weeds, but only a couple of hours when stacking wood - and is working to slowly push those limits further.
He's conquered driving the tractor - a skill that took time and practice to reclaim - and was able to rebuild the carburetor on a car.
Other physical tasks remain difficult, though.
"I couldn't work the belt, so I went to suspenders," Dobson said. "You just make a fashion statement out of it."
Dobson is still recovering in other ways, too. He's working to improve his concentration and still struggles with communication.
"I could talk, but I couldn't read," Dobson said. "I could read scroll on the TV, but I couldn't read a book. I just got the skill to read a book again."
Reading a book proved to be more difficult because it requires more than simply reading words. In order to read the words, Dobson had to first be able to hold the book, learn how to orient the book - making sure it wasn't upside down - and follow the lines and pages, he said.
"It's just finding your way out of things," Dobson said.
Dobson also struggles to visualize things when people talk. When he writes, words will often have backward letters. And he still can't read a tape measure.
But he's continuing to progress.
"For the first six to seven months, your brain feels like a rock," Dobson said. "Now, it's starting to feel like a sponge again."
In the last year, Ly has told countless patients about Dobson's successes. He hopes sharing Dobson's story, and the role mindfulness played in his recovery, will encourage more patients to try meditation and to have hope for their own recovery and future, he said.
"It was a horrible experience, but it was an absolutely stunning experience in my development as a human being," Dobson said.
"This is going to turn me into a better person," he added.
Great Wisdom In Simple Words
"Trying to be happy by accumulating possessions is like trying to satisfy hunger by taping sandwiches all over your body".  George Carlin
"Service is never ideological, for we do not serve ideas, we serve people," the pope said in his homily. "Do not neglect them (others) for plans which can be seductive, but are unconcerned about the face of the person beside you." Pope Francis
 "The journey is the reward"  traditional old Chinese saying.
Thich Tri Sieu and his students visited our temple in late September.

Thich Tri Sieu's website is www.Thichtrisieu.com.  He lives in France and teaches around the world.  We were very happy to have him visit our temple.  He may want to lead a retreat here in the future.

Venerable Thich Tri Sieu was born in 1962 in Saigon, Viet Nam. He became buddhist monk in 1985 and received the complete ordination (bhikshu) in the Mahayana tradition in 1987 from the Most Ven. Thich Huyen-Vi, the Abbot of Linh Son Monastery in Joinville-le-Pont, Paris. 

After his mahayanist training, he continued his research and practice under the guidance of Masters from various Buddhist traditions such as Theravada, Zen, and Vajrayana. Currently he is travelling worldwide giving teachings and meditation retreats to the Vietnamese Buddhist communities in Europe and North America

Calendar

Winter temple meditation hours 
Tuesday - Friday 6:30 am,
Full Service Saturday 9am 
OCTOBER 

4 Buu Hung Monastery Dharma talk and meditation at 3pm - in Vancouver WA
10 Bodhi Dharma Day - One-day retreat
11 Hood River Meditation - 6pm at Trinity Natural Medicine
18
Hood River Meditation - 6pm at Trinity Natural Medicine
 
23-25 Fall Meditation Retreat at our temple 
  
NOVEMBER 
1 Buu Hung Monastery Dharma talk and meditation at 3pm - in Vancouver WA 
8  Hood River Meditation - 6pm at Trinity Natural Medicine                                            

1
4 - 15 Precepts retreat - Buu Hung Monastery                                                                                                  22 Hood River Meditation - 6pm at Trinity Natural Medicine                                                                                 29 Hood River Meditation - 6pm at Trinity Natural Medicine
DECEMBER
6 Buu Hung Monastery Dharma talk and meditation at 3pm - in Vancouver WA
31 meditation starts at 11:30 pm and ends at 12:30 am at our temple 
Sound Meditation Circle  
October 2nd & November 6th, 7pm - 8:30 pm. Thursdays.  
At Cascade Acupuncture Center, 104 5th St, Hood River, OR   
You are invited to experience the power of sound vibration and clear intention to relax, release and feel renewed. We will tone, meditate, and focus our imagination, increasing the capacity for creativity and wellbeing. 
All welcome- No experience required- Pre-register 
Facilitated by Beth Welton-Miller, MS, LMT 
For over 30 years, Beth has lived her passion for personal and relationship transformation helping people connect with their core essence. Her professional experience includes teaching workshops and working individually with people using body centered and energetic healing practices. 
Reserve a space by e-mail to beth@vibrant-living.com or calling 503-680-5810 
Contribution: $10 - $20.  Suggested sliding scale; payable at time of event.   
For more information:  www.vibrant-living.com  
Is your group part of the Northwest Dharma Association? 
if not, it is time to join!  If you are a solitary practitioner or without a sanga you can still donate dana (money).  The are a clearing house for Buddhist Activity in the Northwest and need our support. 
 read more about the NWDA at http://www.northwestdharma.org/  
This is the travel company we used when our temple went to India.  Ravi Gupta is a easy going man with a vision of operating a well run tour company.

Trout Lake Event      Come join the fun!
TLCF Oktoberfest Saturday, October 4th
11am - 5pm       at the Trout Lake CSA

PO Box 487, Trout Lake WA 98650     www.MtAdamsZen.org

509.395.2030  (e-mail -put in the @ sign) kozen1 at embarqmail.com