Welcome to "Simple Living" - Chapters 1 and 2

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  • Jundo
    Treeleaf Founder and Priest
    • Apr 2006
    • 39272

    Welcome to "Simple Living" - Chapters 1 and 2

    Dear All,

    Welcome to our "Simple Living" Practice Circle, based on the little book entitled "The Art of Simple Living: 100 Daily Practices from a Japanese Zen Monk for a Lifetime of Calm and Joy" by Rev. Shunmyo Masuno (https://www.amazon.com/Art-Simple-Li.../dp/B07FC2BNM3). My small review of the book is here:

    This is a wonderful, wise and unique book. The Soto Priest and noted Japanese garden designer, Shunmyo Masuno, has put together 100 little lessons (each one is less than a page long), stories and tiny practices to bring a drop of Zen Wisdom and Compassion to our day (e.g., "plant a single seed, water it, and watch it closely each day as it grows" or "don't throw away, and completely repurpose, something you were about to toss in the trash.") Most of the practices take no time at all, can be done only once, or now and then, or as a permanent habit, and are very simple.

    Will it be life changing? Well, it will change this one moment, and lead you to notice and experience aspects of life that might have slipped by you in our daily hustle and bustle. It is about slowing down, appreciating the small things, accepting the ups and downs of ordinary life a little bit more. I think that such small drops of change and stillness will have a positive and cumulative effect, yes. Each small practice or insight adds to bigger changes in our hearts. (Do make it a habit to say "thank you" when life hands you something even unwelcome, do try to really listen to a friend or stranger for a minute although you are otherwise distracted).

    He does not mean for us to do all 100 practices each day, but maybe some only once, some now and then, and some might really stick to us and become a regular part of life. Try them and see.

    The book seems to be available as "Zen your life: Kleine Veränderungen mit großer Wirkung" in German. It seems to also be available in English under the alternative title, "Zen: The Art of Simple Living."

    A nice article profiling Rev. Masuno is here: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/culture...1#.XQrOtegzaUl
    JUMP IN ANYWHERE, NO NEED TO GO IN ORDER! Some you may do just once, some you may do a few times, some you might continue ... a few may last a lifetime! Let's see! Most of the activities are short and should only require a few minutes. Enjoy them, they are to bring lightness to life. All the "chapters" of the book are less than a page long.

    I will include chapter headings, as we discovered some differences between the US and UK editions regarding chapter order.

    Chapter 1 - Make Time For Emptiness - Your assignment is "Sit Zazen for a few minutes." (Hopefully, you would be sitting Zazen anyway! )

    Chapter 2 - Wake Up Fifteen Minutes Earlier - Wake up 15 minutes early one morning, lengthen your spine, stretch your muscles and take deep breaths for a couple of minutes, then spend a few minutes just looking deeply at the sky or listening deeply to the birds, thinking nothing particularly at all. You can drink tea or coffee etc. too.


    Please write your experiences with the little activities below, although perhaps not much to say.

    Gassho, Jundo

    SatTodayLAH
    Last edited by Jundo; 07-21-2020, 04:30 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE
  • Shokai
    Treeleaf Priest
    • Mar 2009
    • 6391

    #2
    Thanks Jundo, starting tomorrow morning at 7:00am. Need to get to bed now.

    gassho, Shokai

    stlah
    合掌,生開
    gassho, Shokai

    仁道 生開 / Jindo Shokai

    "Open to life in a benevolent way"

    https://sarushinzendo.wordpress.com/

    Comment

    • Doshin
      Member
      • May 2015
      • 2644

      #3
      Started a few weeks ago. My wife or I read a Chapter out loud at night...not every night due to scheduling but moving forward.

      First time my wife is sitting 10 minutes and now 12.

      A pleasant, peaceful thing to share with my wife

      Doshin
      St

      Comment

      • Mp

        #4
        Thank you ... I will be reading along.

        Have have had this book for awhile and read it once already, but great book, so will be nice to go through it once more.

        Gassho
        Shingen

        Sat/LAH

        Comment

        • Tairin
          Member
          • Feb 2016
          • 2733

          #5
          Originally posted by Doshin
          A pleasant, peaceful thing to share with my wife
          I agree with you Doshin. My wife sits with me most days and it is wonderful to share this with her.


          Tairin
          Sat today and lah
          泰林 - Tai Rin - Peaceful Woods

          Comment

          • Tai Shi
            Member
            • Oct 2014
            • 3309

            #6
            Usually it is my practice to sit zazen 20 min. I set the timer for 28 min, find myself peeking at about 20 min. Yesterday at about 4:30 I began before breakfast as some advice given, but stomach growled. This morning before breakfast sat zazen about 20 min before breakfast but ready at kitchen table to begin eating as soon as all was over. Found not good to sit zazen in kitchen but tomorrow move to cushion before breakfast. I will simplify. Perhaps I won't sit zazen so long, better for stomach.

            Tai Shi
            sat
            Gassho
            Peaceful, Tai Shi. Ubasoku; calm, supportive, for positive poetry 優婆塞 台 婆

            Comment

            • Hoseki
              Member
              • Jun 2015
              • 649

              #7
              Neat! I'm in too.

              Gassho
              Hoseki
              Sattoday/lah

              Comment

              • newby_x86
                Member
                • Dec 2017
                • 114

                #8
                Thank you for getting this going, Jundo.

                Gassho,
                Anant
                SaT

                Comment

                • Seibu
                  Member
                  • Jan 2019
                  • 271

                  #9
                  I'm joining too and I'm looking forward to read about your experiences

                  Gassho,
                  Jack
                  Sattoday/lah

                  Comment

                  • Kendrick
                    Member
                    • May 2019
                    • 250

                    #10
                    I’m in!

                    Gassho
                    Kendrick
                    Sat

                    Comment

                    • Shonin Risa Bear
                      Member
                      • Apr 2019
                      • 921

                      #11
                      This.

                      gassho
                      doyu stlah
                      Visiting priest: use salt

                      Comment

                      • Seishin
                        Member
                        • Aug 2016
                        • 1520

                        #12
                        Hi Jundo, I'm interested in jumping on the back of this one. Can you confirm this is the same book ?

                        Its the only Kindle version I could find on Amazon.fr. Thought I'd check, as its title is slightly different.


                        Seishin

                        Sei - Meticulous
                        Shin - Heart

                        Comment

                        • Junkyo
                          Member
                          • Jun 2018
                          • 262

                          #13
                          I just got the book and will be joining in as well.

                          Gassho,

                          Junkyo
                          SAT

                          Sent from my SM-G955W using Tapatalk

                          Comment

                          • Jundo
                            Treeleaf Founder and Priest
                            • Apr 2006
                            • 39272

                            #14
                            Originally posted by Seishin
                            Yes. Not sure why they published with 2 titles. Complicates the simple.

                            Gassho, J

                            STlah
                            ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

                            Comment

                            • Tairin
                              Member
                              • Feb 2016
                              • 2733

                              #15
                              My wife and I tried these two exercises this morning. Of course the sitting Zazen part was easy given that it is part of our Sunday morning routine. I am hearing impaired so listening to the birds required a bit of extra attention but more importantly trying to not create a problem with expectations and disappointment. The very fresh air (10 degrees this morning) was lovely.

                              My wife said she "thoroughly enjoyed it."

                              I suspect this is a keeper.


                              Tairin
                              Sat today and lah
                              泰林 - Tai Rin - Peaceful Woods

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