Saturday, September 3, 2011

Ango 2011 - Day 1

Today marks the first day of Ango for 2011.  I'm still trying to decide the format for my daily blogary, but maybe it can just evolve as the time passes.

  • Started Ango with a bang.  Hosted by Fugen, we had a 90 minute zazenkai which consisted of Zazen (30 min), Kinhin (15 min) and Zazen (30 min).  
    • Sat on Google+ with Dosho, Morelos, Shinkai, Soen & Roky.
  • Lunch with family @ Red Robin
    • Eating out is a challenge for vegans because everything has lactose in it in some fashion.  Fortunately they had a vegan Boca burger and fries which were pretty good.
  • Coffee with Tony @ Starbucks
    • Giving up coffee this was a challenge.  But I went with a Vanilla Bean Frap with Soy...was just mediocre and probably a green tea would've been a better choice.  
    • Great conversation about life and work but even cooler topics like Ekhart Tolle.  Tony is reading his stuff and it was quite interesting how 'zen' some of the philosophies of Tolle are.  I've never read anything so will maybe read so I can talk about the parallels more easily.
  • Shakuhachi Practice
    • Practiced Choshi and was pulling my hair out.  The notes move into the higher register (kan) and I sound like a strangled goose...must...practice...more!! (Wife had a headache but silently suffered...metta to her).
    • When I would get too frustrated, I'd focus back on Kyorei which is all in the otsu register and much more manageable for me. 
  • Dogen Shobo study
    • Read about cleaning our teeth with a willow twig and how I should scrape my tongue to near bleeding.  
    • Also read about how animalistic some of the Chinese practictioners were because they used sticks that had hair like clumps on them.  (um...toothbrush?)  
    • Couldn't find a willow twig around so just slummed it with the Chinese guys. :)
  • Food Drive
  • - Zazen (25 Min) Solo but publicly on G+.
    • Had an acquaintance on G+ mentioned he'd like to join me and then he sent me a private mail asking about my background and tradition and such.  Gave him the low-down on my practice and then directed him to Treeleaf for more information and support of his practice.  Would be great to have another G+'er to sit with!

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