Upcoming Events
for more information, call (919) 967-0861

Download the September-October 2018 CHZC Newsletter in PDF format.
View the CHZC Google Calendar of Events.

Buddhas and Ancestors:
What's a Zen Lineage?

A four week inquiry offered by Choro Carla Antonaccio
Monday evenings, 7 to 8:30 PM,
September 17, 24, and October 1 and 8, 2018

In a chapter of Dogen's Shobogenzo (Treasury of the True Dharma Eye) called "Raihai Tokuzui", or "Bowing and Attaining the Way", Dogen says: "What is so exalted about a man? Space is space; the four elements are the four elements; the five aggregates are the five aggregates. For a woman it is the same thing. In acquiring the dharma, all acquire the dharma equally. All should pay homage to and hold in esteem one who has acquired the dharma. Do not make an issue of whether it is a man or a woman. This is the most wondrous law of the buddha dharma."

Over four weeks, we will study this fascicle and the stories of women practicing with Dogen and other Zen ancestors. Our inquiry will include a consideration of how far Dogen's attitudes as expressed in his writings actually supported women to practice and teach in his time, and how gender/identity functions down to the present in Soto Zen. All are welcome!

Cost is $40, payable to Chapel Hill Zen Center. Please sign up by emailing Choro: subtlegate@gmail.com. A packet of study materials will be provided. Questions can be directed to Choro by email or in person at the temple.

Choro Carla Antonaccio began practicing at the Chapel Hill Zen Center in 1999 and received priest ordination in 2010. She also has undertaken residential training at San Francisco Zen Center's monastery, Tassajara Zen Mountain Center.

Shukke Tokudo — Priest Ordination

Saturday, September 29 at 1 PM
You are warmly invited to attend the ordination of Nedo Senmyo Jeffrey Sherman and Korin Eden Kevin Heffernan of the Richmond Zen Group, on Saturday, September 29, at 1 PM, followed by a reception.

The ceremony of being ordained and receiving the precepts as a priest is Shukke Tokudo in Japanese, and it means leaving home and accomplishing the way. Although we don't always literally leave home and move to a monastery or practice center, one way to "leave home" is to make supporting formal practice at the zendo one's highest priority. Helping the temple run smoothly and making zazen practice available to others is the way a priest serves the sangha. Your presence at this important ceremony will support these ordainees, and the ceremony is a way for all of us to renew our own vows. We also need volunteers to help with the reception by setting up, bringing refreshments, and helping with clean-up. If you would like to help, please let Choro know at subtlegate@gmail.com.

If you would like to make a donation toward the cost of priest robes for Jeff, please note "Robe Fund" on your donation.

In Gassho,
Taitaku Josho, Abbess

Eco-Dharma Discussion Group

Mountains and waters right now are the actualization of the ancient Buddha way.
— Master Dogen

Sunday, September 2, at 11:15 AM
In this group we will informally explore together Buddhist teachings on the natural world, caring for the natural world as an expression of the Bodhisattva Vow, and our own responses to current environmental issues. The intention of this group is to support and inspire one another in our efforts to make appropriate Buddhist responses to environmental concerns at a personal, local and global level. If you are interested please contact Zenki Kathleen Batson at lulu@rumblebuss.com.

Aging Gracefully, Befriending Death

Sunday, September 9, at 11:15 AM
This is an informal discussion group that gives the opportunity to share readings, information, and explore conversations among ourselves on these topics. Please contact Kris Garvin at krisgarvin@gmail.com, or Jeff Sherman at jeffsherman3333@gmail.com, if you have questions, would like more information. Everyone is welcome, regardless of age.

Children's Program

The Zen Center's Children's Program offers children four years and older a place in the Zen Center sangha through a variety of activities, including meditation, story, craft, song, and movement, as well as participation in Zen Center events and celebrations throughout the year. In each meeting, the children have the space and time to practice living mindfully and to learn about Buddhist teachings and contexts while giving their parents an opportunity to meditate in the concurrent adult program.

The Children's Program meets twice a month, on Sunday mornings, from 8:50 until 11 AM. The program will be held on September 9 and 23, and October 7 and 21. For more information, please contact Maura High, the program coordinator, at maurahigh@gmail.com.

Private Interview

Individual meetings are available to discuss your meditation practice including your posture, practice in daily life, and questions you may have about Buddhist teaching. Interviews are usually given during zazen and sometimes by special appointment.

Dokusan is a formal meeting with the Abbess to talk about your practice. You may schedule Dokusan by speaking to Josho Sensei or contacting her at info@chzc.org. When it's time for you to have Dokusan, someone may come to the zendo and get you, or the bell in the Dokusan Room will signal when it is time for you to come back. When it is your turn, go to the Dokusan Room, enter and close the door. Do one floor bow toward the altar ending with a standing bow, then sidestep and bow to and away from the cushion. Sit down and turn clockwise to face the teacher, settle and begin talking. When Dokusan is over, turn clockwise, fluff your cushion, and do a standing bow. Leave the door slightly open as you leave. During all-day sittings and sesshins the private interview will be treated as Dokusan.

Practice Discussion is a discussion with a priest about your practice. Jakuko Mo Ferrell and Choro Carla Antonaccio are available to meet with people for Practice Discussion. The form is to do a standing bow in front of the altar and to bow to and away from your cushion before sitting down, turn clockwise and begin. You may contact them at the zendo or by email. Jakuko can be reached at mositwear@gmail.com and Choro can be reached at subtlegate@gmail.com.

Sangha Network

The CHZC has a Sangha Network of volunteers to offer short-term assistance to those in the sangha who need help with simple tasks such as shopping, arranging for meals, or transportation, due to transitions in one's life including illness, disability, or death of a loved one. If you would like to volunteer or if you need assistance, please contact Kris at krisgarvin@gmail.com or Jeff at jeffsherman3333@gmail.com.

Prison Outreach

Members of the Chapel Hill Zen Center volunteer in both state prisons in North Carolina and the federal prison at Butner. We can always use more volunteers, and having volunteers present is usually a requirement in order for inmates to meet for religious services or to sit zazen. We are looking for people who have been sitting zazen at the Zen Center for a year or more. Orientation is required by each institution. If you would like more information, please contact Josho at (919) 967-0861 or info@chzc.org.

Prison Book Donation Program

The Prison Book Donation Program is grateful for the generous support of the Sangha. Donations of Buddhist books, particularly on Zen, are appreciated, and only paperbacks are accepted by the prison. Please leave prison book donations at the Zendo.

Richmond Zen Group

Josho Sensei will visit the Richmond Zen Group on Wednesday evening, August 22, to sit zazen and give a Dharma Talk, beginning at 7 PM. Everyone is welcome.

For information, contact Kevin at (804) 366-5546 or visit www.richmondzen.org.

Wilmington Zen Group

For information contact Elizabeth at (910) 762-7465 or elizdarrow@gmail.com.

Gate City Zen Group in Greensboro

The Gate City Zen Group meets for zazen in Greensboro. For more information, contact Denise at dlgabri2@uncg.edu or (336) 324-9970.

General Meeting

Sunday, November 4, at 11:30 AM
The General Meeting, our annual members' business meeting, will be held on Sunday morning, November 4, at 11:00, following zazen. The nominees for the next Board of Directors will be introduced and the budget for 2019 will be presented. Everyone is encouraged to attend, but only Participating Members are eligible to vote. If you have agenda items, please contact the Board President, Maura High at maurahigh@gmail.com.

The 2018 Board Members

Chapel Hill Zen Center Board Members for 2018 are President, Maura High; Vice President, Ken Wilson; Secretary, John Paredes; Treasurer, Mike McKillip; Members-at-Large, Andrea Ashdown and Colin Maxwell.

Volunteers Needed

A group of Zen Center volunteers prepares and serves lunch at the Inter-faith Council Community Kitchen on the fourth Saturday of each month from 10 AM to 1 PM. More volunteers are needed, including a core group of committed people, so we can continue our presence. The IFC Community Kitchen is the only soup kitchen in Orange Country and is located on the corner of Rosemary and Columbia Streets in Chapel Hill. If you are interested in volunteering or would like more information, please contact Shawn at (919) 619-2243 or chzencooks@gmail.com.

Altar Maintenance and Flower Arrangers

If you are interested in helping care for the altars of our temple, this would be a good time to begin, or return to, the practice of chidening and flower arranging. Traditionally, chidens are responsible for maintaining the altars of a temple which means cleaning the altars themselves, sifting and cleaning the incense burners, trimming candles, and replenishing needed items.

We also need volunteers to bring flowers and create flower arrangements for the altars.

Chidening and creating flower arrangements are wonderful ways of supporting the ongoing practice of our temple. A new schedule is being set up, and if you are interested in serving as a chiden about once a month, please contact John at john@jollyoso.com. If you are interested in serving as a flower arranger about once a month, please contact Andrea at andreajost@gmail.com.

Adverse Weather Policy

The general rule about coming to the zendo is, if driving may be risky, don't do it. For example, when it is snowing or sleeting, or if snow or sleet are predicted to occur before or during zazen, you can assume that the zendo will be closed. This is particularly true for 6:00 A.M. zazen. The highway where the zendo is located is often not as well traveled or as well treated for snow as other highways in the area, and the temperature in the county is often a couple of degrees colder than in more populated areas.


The Chapel Hill Zen Center now has a blog with photographs from recent ceremonies and events. See: www.chapelhillzen.wordpress.com.

CHZC Newsletter in PDF Format

If you prefer receiving an email with a link to the PDF file of the CHZC Newsletter which is mailed every two months in printed form, please send your request to info@chzc.org. The PDF version is always linked to at the top of the Events page.

To get the latest version of Adobe's free PDF viewer, Acrobat Reader, click here.


You are invited to join an email listserv now available via Yahoo for announcements about upcoming activities at the CHZC. If you wish to become a member of this listserv, please type "Subscribe" in the subject line and send an email to CHZCannounce-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. You can also go to: www.groups.yahoo.com/group/CHZCannounce and click the "Join Now" box. You may be requested to supply some information or to create a Yahoo "identity." Please note the options for making your email address public or for receiving marketing or other messages not directly from the listserv. It is your choice whether or not to receive other messages. Joining this list will not increase the amount of spam you receive. If you have any questions, please contact the list moderator, Lance at lashdown@yahoo.com.

Beginning Zen Practice

A Class with David Guy
Monday evenings, 7:30 to 9 PM
October 15 to November 19, 2018

Stop searching for phrases and chasing after words. Take the backward step and turn the light inward. Your body-mind of itself will drop off and your original face will appear.
— Dogen

Zen Meditation, or zazen, is the simple practice of being present with our experience. We hear the instructions in a matter of minutes, but spend a lifetime learning the practice. This class will introduce participants to meditation and give them support as they develop a daily sitting practice. It will also introduce them to other aspects of practice at the Chapel Hill Zen Center.

The first night will begin with meditation instructions and a short period of sitting. Each week we will continue to sit for a period at the beginning of class, gradually increasing the time. Participants will have a chance to ask questions and raise concerns about their practice. As the weeks proceed we will study other aspects of Zen practice, including walking meditation, protocol around the zendo, and the service of bowing and chanting. But the focus will be on zazen, and participants' actual practice as it unfolds. The content of the class will emerge from participants' questions and concerns.

Cost is $60, payable the first night, and will be contributed to the Zen Center. Partial scholarships are available. For more information, or to sign up, please contact David Guy at (919) 286-4952 or davidguy@mindspring.com.

David Guy has been practicing meditation since 1991, and regularly gives sitting instruction. He has co-authored two books with Larry Rosenberg of the Cambridge Insight Meditation Center — Breath by Breath: The Liberating Practice of Insight Meditation and Living in the Light of Death: On the Art of Being Truly Alive. In 2008 he published Jake Fades: A Novel of Impermanence. David's blog and be found at www.davidguy.org.

Dharma Talks

Josho Pat Phelan will give a public Dharma Talk on
Sunday, September 23, and October 14, at 10:30 AM.

Daigaku Rumme, who founded and is the teacher for Confluence Zen Center in St. Louis, MO, will give at public Dharma Talk on Sunday morning, November 25, at 10:30. Daigaku Roshi was ordained in Japan in 1978, by Sekkei Harada Roshi of Hosshin-ji Monastery, where he practiced for more than twenty-seven years.

Everyone is welcome.

All-Day Sitting

Sunday, October 14
An All-day sitting is scheduled for October 14 from 6 AM until 5 PM. The all-day sitting will begin with orientation on Saturday night at 7:30 PM, and will include instruction on the meal form and one period of zazen. The regular Sunday schedule, with zazen at 9:00 and 9:50 and Dharma Talk at 10:30, will be open to everyone. The day will include zazen, a lecture, dokusan and a work period, as well as breakfast and lunch. The fee is $10 for members and $20 for others. It is alright to sit half of the day, but please sign up in advance, and please speak to Josho Sensei if this is your first all-day sitting. For more information on the oryoki meal form see: www.kannondo.org/oryoki.

Study Group

Practice-realization in Dogen's understanding includes the totality of all being-time and all beings' time. It is the multidimensional enactment of reality. From the standpoint of our being-time, it is experiencing our life with all being without obstruction.
— Shinshu Roberts, Introduction to Being-Time

Thursday evenings, 6:45 to 8 PM
beginning September 20th (no meeting September 27th)

The Study Group will resume meeting on Thursday evenings, from 6:45 to 8 PM, on September 20, and it will go through November 15. We will read together and discuss the book Being-Time, A Practitioner's Guide to Dogen's Shobogenzo Uji, by Shinshu Roberts. This is a commentary on and a discussion of Zen Master Dogen's text based on his premise that being and time are inseparable. Everyone is welcome and there is no charge. Copies of the book are for sale in the entryway.

Zen Teachings in Challenging Times

A third volume of teachings by Soto Zen women teachers, including Josho Pat Phelan, has just been published. This new book, edited by Maura High, will be available for sale soon at the zendo. The previous two books, Receiving the Marrow and Seeds of Virtue, Seeds of Change, also have chapters by Josho Pat Phelan, and are available for sale in the zendo entryway.

Zen Teachings in Challenging Times book cover

People of Color Sitting Group

Wednesday evenings from 6 to 7:30 PM
The POC Sitting Group begins with zazen from 6 to 6:40 PM, with an option to stay for group discussion and community building. We are currently discussing the book Sanctuary by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel. Both those new to meditation, or experienced, are warmly welcome to join us or drop in as you like. For more information, contact Conal, Kriti or John at pocsittinggroup@gmail.com.

As usual, instruction in zazen and an orientation are offered to the public on Sunday morning at 9 AM, and on Tuesday night at 7 PM.

Recovery Meeting

Tuesday evenings, 7:30 to 8:30 PM
This is a recovery group with a Buddhist perspective on the 12-Step Program which meets at the Chapel Hill Zen Center. The meetings begin with twenty minutes of silent meditation. For more information, contact: (919) 265-7600 or ZenandRecovery@gmail.com.

Chinese Calligraphy & Brush Painting

Jinxiu Zhao will teach Chinese Calligraphy on Sunday afternoons from 2:15 to 3:45 PM, on Septem-ber 9 and 23, October 7 and 21, and November 4 and 18, and Brush Painting from 2:15 to 4:15 PM. Fees are $30 per class, or $110 for 4 classes. Please contact Jinxiu at (919) 484-7524 or jxznc@aol.com to register or for more information. Jinxiu is also available to teach children's classes.

Temple Gift

A scroll of Shakyamuni Buddha with the two founders of Soto Zen in Japan below, Eihei Dogen Zenji and Keizan Jokin Zenji, now hangs in the zendo. The scroll was a gift from the Soto Zen Headquarters in Japan honoring the Chapel Hill Zen Center as a formally recognized Soto Zen Temple.
(Click image for larger view.)

Chapel Hill Zen Center Soto-shu Banner

Looking Ahead

Sejiki Ceremony — The Feeding and Nourishing of Hungry Ghosts, Saturday evening, October, 27.

Reverend Daigaku Rummé will give a Dharma Talk on Sunday morning, November 25, at 10:30. Daigaku was ordained a Soto monk by Harada Sekkei Roshi in 1978, and trained for more than twenty-seven years under Harada Roshi at Hosshinji Monastery in Fukui, Japan.

Rohatsu Sesshin — November 30 to December 7, 2018, led by Josho Sensei.

Spring Sesshin — March 1 to 6, 2019,
a Genso-e sesshin led by Shohaku Okumura.

New Library Books

The Zen Center Library is available to Participating Members to check out books for three weeks at a time, with a two-week renewal.

Recent additions to the library include:
The Book of Joy by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu
Light That Shines Through Infinity by Dainin Katagiri
Deepest Practice, Deepest Wisdom by Kosho Uchiyama
Most Intimate by Pat Enkyo O'Hara
Why Buddhism Is True by Robert Wright
Japanese Death Poems translated by Yoel Hoffman
Crow with No Mouth poems by Ikkyu
Sanctuary: A Meditation on Home, Homelessness and Belonging by Zenju Earthlyn Manual
The Mountains and Waters Sutra by Shohaku Okumura
The Wonder of Presence and the Way of Meditative Inquiry
by Toni Packer
The Inconceivable Emancipation: Themes from the Vimalakirti Nirdesa by Sangharakshita
The Zen Works of Stonehouse translated by Red Pine
Zen and Material Culture edited by Pamela Winfield and Steven Heine
Buddhist Nuns, Monks and Other Worldly Matters: Recent Papers on Monastic Buddhismin India by Gregory Schopen
Essential Chan Buddhism: The Character and Spirit of Chinese Zen by Chan Master Guojun
Amongst White Clouds: Buddhist Hermit Masters of China's Zhongnan Mountains a film by Edward Burger.

Convinced of death,
I enjoy the sunshine.
I know there is no help.
Bones of the Master by George Crane

The library catalogue is online at www.tinyurl.com/chzclibrary.

Amazon Smile

Amazon now donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice. On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. Your selection will be remembered, and then every eligible purchase you make on AmazonSmile will result in a donation. AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. The Chapel Hill Zen Center is now listed with smile.amazon.com

Shopping Online?

The Chapel Hill Zen Center is now registered with the online company iGive.com. iGive.com is set up so that when you register with them to make a purchase, a percentage (about 2%-15%) will be given to the non-profit of your choice. iGive.com has 238 merchants registered with them, including LandsEnd, L.L. Bean, and Amazon.com. After logging on to iGive.com, to make a purchase, choose the merchant, place the order, and then designate the Chapel Hill Zen Center to receive a portion of the proceeds from the sale. We are not advocating that you buy something you wouldn't ordinarily, or that you buy online, but, if you already shop online, consider going through iGive.com to make your purchase.