Friday, March 11, 2011

Pancakes For Breakfast

It turned out that we didn't do a leaving ceremony this morning; when I checked back through my records, I discovered that the person in question had missed our last tangaryo, and thus had never officially entered. With impeccable logic we say, no entering ceremony, no leaving ceremony. We got to compensate for that lack though. As I was settling into my seat before zazen, someone handed me a note detailing the huge earthquake in Japan and the fact that the tsunami was due to hit San Francisco at seven o'clock. I wasn't quite sure what to do with that information, but decided that since we did not need to evacuate the building, the morning schedule could continue as usual, and we did a well-being ceremony for the victims for our noon service.
I am still mostly focusing on the funeral; today we had some new gear arrive, and it was gratifying to get from opening the package with Laura, and pulling out a video camera, to livestreaming from the Buddha Hall in about twenty minutes. We discovered that the mic built into the camera did a better job of picking up the sound in the Buddha Hall than the wireless hand-held mics I was thinking we would use; I know that is a job they are not really designed for. Now we just need to figure out if we can use the livestream to show proceedings via a laptop, projector, screen and the other sound system in the dining room on Sunday.
While we were testing that out, we - that is, mainly the work leader -  were also setting up for the Lay Entrustment this evening. I did manage to take the time today to have a bath and do my laundry, without having to combine the two operations. Then I came downstairs at five fifteen to three messages on my phone. I already knew that the fukudo was going to be late for zazen, and a replacement had volunteered herself. The messages were from the doshi, the doan and the kokyo respectively, all saying they were too busy to make it. This is where I am always grateful to people like Roger. Roger happened to be passing by just after I had heard this news, and was happy, as always, to be drafted. The person who was covering the han was able to be kokyo, and I was doshi, using the extra ten minutes before I needed to go to the zendo to print out some stuff for the evening ceremony.
During afternoon zazen I started worrying whether we should have planned a memorial service for the earthquake victims for our evening service, then I noticed how clenched my jaw was, and let go of the idea.
After dinner I was helping get people oriented for the Lay Entrustment, then when I came to do the usual ino spiel to let everyone know what was going to happen, I find that I hadn't really taken the details on board, and had to borrow a program to remind myself. As before, it was not so strictly formal, but it had the wonderful quality of old friends meeting and supporting Jamie as a new teacher. Jamie has been a great support to me since I first arrived, just by being who he is. Before the ceremony Michael offered me the chance to make a congratulatory statement if I wanted; in the end I didn't, but I would have said something along the lines of, many people can teach the dharma through their knowledge and their actions, but not many can also explain the 4-4-2 formation and how the offside trap works.
Finally, since Lien emailed me to say she had seen me out in the courtyard after breakfast and wondered why I hadn't posted any photos, here is one of the budding maple tree in the morning light. We were all in a wonderful mood then, since the tenzo had given us such a treat for breakfast.

No comments: