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Zazen: Order Emerging out of Freedom, CC 6/21

Related Information
Issho Fujita
Article: Zazen Is Not Shuzen, by Issho Fujita
Sitting with Bones: Restoring “Ancient Body” to Do Zazen as "Ancient Practice," CC 10/4
with Issho Fujita
in the City Center Buddha Hall

Sunday, June 21, 2015  
1 - 4:30 pm

To give your sheep or cow a large, spacious meadow is the way to control him. So it is with people: first let them do what they want, and watch them. This is the best policy. To ignore them is not good; that is the worst policy. The second worst is trying to control them. The best one is to watch them, just to watch them, without trying to control them.
—Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

We tend to manipulate body, breath and mind to accomplish zazen. But that is an act of control, imposing an ideal order from the outside in. According to Suzuki Roshi, there is a different way of zazen: to “give your sheep or cow a large, spacious meadow.” This is an inside-out approach, to let zazen emerge out of freedom. How is this possible?

In this workshop we will engage in lecture, somatic exercises and sitting zazen to explore what we can do (or undo) to realize such zazen. In this way, we will:
  • Examine how the posture, the breath and the mind regulate themselves in a dynamic way outside of our control.
  • Look at how to practice the inside-out approach to zazen.
  • Investigate some implications of this approach as an attitude of living.
  • And more…
Fees: $40; $36 current SFZC members; $32 limited income.

To Register: Use the Register Online button above. Or call our toll free number (888.743.9362) or our local number (415.475.9362).

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Related Bio(s):

Issho Fujita
Issho Fujita was born in Japan in 1954. He studied developmental/clinical psychology at Tokyo University. When he was a PhD student, at the age of 27, he attended a week-long Zen sesshin at Enkaku-ji, a traditional Rinzai monastery in Kamakura. Eventually he dropped out of graduate school to study Zen full time and entered Antai-ji, a Soto Zen monastery. In 2010, he was assigned to be Director of Soto Zen Buddhism International Center in San Francisco. Issho is interested in inventing new and fun ways to articulate the depth of the simple practice of shikantaza (just sitting).