First of all we’re hoping everyone is finding their way through this astonishing time – unfortunately it appears that things will be getting still more challenging, before they get better, and so strengthening our community bonds will be more important than ever.
So in the midst of our more personal adaptations, we also want to focus our attention on ways of supporting each other as a sangha, and of keeping the practice strong. This letter is intended to be just a first step in that process, and we’re confident that a more balanced and sustained model will be evolving in the weeks to come.
Many of us are wondering about how best to practice in this time of “social distancing” and heightened risk of contagion. Naturally, we want to connect and lean on our Sangha for support. On the other hand, the natural tendency to turn towards one another (in person at least), heightens the risk for spreading disease right now, so we need to strike a balance. While both Windhorse and the Clear Water Center have suspended sitting as a group at our Centers, we will continue sitting at home and offering support online and through live video links. Please note the following:
Windhorse will be offering Teisho and Q&A sessions through their website as Roshi Lawson and Roshi Sunya increase their online presence. Please go to www.windhorsezen.org for the latest schedule of services. The Clear Water Zen Center will offer programs of “sitting at home” following the usual Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings from 7pm-8pm and Sundays from 9:30am-11:30am. We will make every effort to have a Board member sitting either at the Center or at home during these times so you know there is at least one person sitting with you in spirit as you sit at home. Jeff will also offer Daisan on an appointment basis (please email email@example.com to arrange a time) and he will post dharma talks periodically on the website.
As other opportunities for practice present themselves we will take advantage of them, but in the meantime let’s rally together for the good of our sangha and for the larger community.
Jeff and Lawson