Spring 2019 Practice Period

Affirming Trust in Mind

Non-separation informs our action

March 3 - May 5

The Great Way is not difficult for those who hold no preferences. When longing and aversion are both absent, everything becomes clear and undisguised. Make the smallest distinction, however, and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart. If you wish to see the truth, then hold no opinion for or against. The struggle of likes and dislikes is the disease of the mind…
Shinjinmei by Kanchi Sosan, (d.606)

Study Materials

  • Recommended Text: Trust in Mind, Mu Soeng, Wisdom Publications, 2015
  • Opening the Hand of Thought, Uchiyama, 2004. 
  • Zen Teachings in Challenging Times, Temple Ground Press, 25 contemporary women teachers, 2018. 
  • Verses with introduction. characters, and pronunciation Link
  • Translations and commentary by Blyth Link
  • Another translation, Affirming Faith in Mind Link
  • Joshin at Upaya, podcast, 1 in series of 3 Link
  • Shinjinmei by Kanchi Sosan 

Dates To Note

March 1, 2, 3 – Open Practice Period Sesshin 
March 3 – Mahapajapati Memorial
March 3, 31 – Classes 
March 6, 21 – Precepts Renewal Ceremonies
March 30 – Sangha Work Day and Potluck 10am-3pm
April 6 – Hike 
April 7, 28, May 5 – Classes 
April 7 – Buddha’s Birthday
April 5, 19  – Precepts Renewal Ceremonies
April 27 – Work Period 10am-noon
May 3,4 – Family-friendly Sesshin
May 5 – Maylie Memorial & Close Practice Period


The theme of the class series is "Affirming Trust in Mind - Non-separation informs our action". Five classes will be held on Sundays from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm (see above dates). Fees are $5.00 to $15.00 per class sliding scale and scholarships are available. You can attend classes even if you are not committed to the full Practice Period. Pre-registration is required for all those attending classes. Place registration forms in the envelope in the zendo or at Trillium on Sundays.

Classes 3 through 5:

Class #3 (was April 7) Theme: How can it be, the Way is perfect like vast space AND I have this imperfect life


After Class #3  Books on reserve in the library: Read

Jane Schneider, in Hidden Lamp , pgs 83-85

OR , Jane Schneider in Zen Teachings in Challenging Times pgs 117-123

AND Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, The Way of Tenderness pgs 35-62 (and to pg 74 if you have time).

Write a bit of your own understanding of being on a spiritual path.


Before class 4

Re-read beginning with the bottom paragraph on pg 47 and continuing to the end of pg 48 in Opening the Hand of Thought. Please continue to examine your own zazen, cultivating the capacity to return to the present moment.


During class 4 April 28 We will study pgs 100-101 of Mu Soengs commentary on Trust in Mind. We will study this in relationship to the teachings of the Heart Sutra. 


After class 4 Even knowing that this is an impossible task, begin to articulate your understanding of the emptiness teachings. Write, draw, paint, make music, find a creative expression of, Just let things be in their own way, and there will be neither coming nor going. Obey the nature of things (your own nature) and you will walk freely, undisturbed.


Before class 5 Reflect upon this passage from Mu Soeng, pgs 107-108: When thought is in bondage, the truth is hidden, for everything is murky and unclear, and the burdensome practice of judging brings annoyance and weariness.

How do you recognize when your thinking/ feeling/ being is caught up in a limited view?

Read pgs 68-74 in Opening the Hand of Thought regarding Enlightenment and ordinary life.


During class 5 May 5 We will examine strategies for freeing ourselves from the constraints of limited view, with particular focus on, If you wish to move in the One Way, do not dislike even the world of sense and ideas.


Guidelines for Participation in Practice Period

Practice Period information and Commitment Forms for participating in the full Practice Period are also available in the zendo and at Trillium on Sundays. Give half of your completed Commitment Form to Gene and keep the other half for yourself.