Welcome to the Oryoki Practice Circle

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  • Jundo
    Treeleaf Founder and Priest
    • Apr 2006
    • 39221

    Welcome to the Oryoki Practice Circle

    Welcome to our re-opened Oryoki Practice Circle, to be guided by Shugen.

    Starting soon, folks interested in the art of formal Zen-style Meal Taking Ritual will gather to Practice in this area of our Treeleaf Forum.

    Shugen will be around here in the coming days with further information.

    Oryoki is the art of mindful eating as a sacred act, receiving just enough with gratitude. It is a dance, a ceremony, into which the self is poured as the self is nourished. One eats savoring each bite, yet also dropping all likes and dislikes, aversions and attractions as best one can. This food is medicine to sustain our lives and Practice.

    Some other descriptions from various sources:

    Oryoki (応量器, “Just enough”) is a meditative form of eating that originated in Japan that emphasizes mindfulness awareness practice by abiding to a strict order of precise movements. Oryoki translates to “Just enough” which refers to the efficiency and accuracy of the form. Each movement is a simple reference point for the mind that encourages one to become present and not wonder in discursive thought. An Oryoki set consists of nested bowls called a jihatsu, usually made of lacquered wood, and utensils all wrapped in a tied cloth .... This is the formal style of serving and eating meals practiced in Zen temples. [Note from Jundo: Shugen will have information on how to make a very good Oryoki set just from items you have at home, so no need to procure a special set for Practice]

    ...

    The word Oryoki can be translated as “that which contains just enough.” In a more general sense it refers to the ritual use of nested eating bowls during Zen meditation retreats. Oryoki meals are simple but precise in detail and flow – from chanting together to placement of utensils, being served, eating, and finally to washing and re-wrapping the sets of bowls.

    ....

    Our Oryoki lineage began with Dogen Zenji, who traveled from Japan to China many centuries ago. ... [In China] he learned the ways of a Buddhist monk, including the monastic eating practice used in China at the time. Dogen Zenji returned to Japan and introduced that style of eating along with some refinements of form. During a few centuries of practice the great Zen masters refined the practice further and passed it down. The Zen tradition of Oryoki as it exists today has a remarkable sense of elegance and fine attention to detail.

    ...

    Upon hearing the mallet for completion of serving food, immediately gassho, and then we chant Verse of Five Contemplations:

    We reflect on the effort that brought us this food and consider how it comes to us.
    We reflect on our virtue and practice, and whether we are worthy of this offering.
    We regard it as essential to free ourselves of excesses such as greed.
    We regard this food as good medicine to sustain our life.
    For the sake of enlightenment, we now receive this food.

    Master Dogen has written ...

    A sutra says: When we are intimate with the food we eat, there is intimacy with all things; when we are intimate with all things, we are intimate with the food we eat. We should let all things and eating be intimate with each other because when each thing is Reality then eating is also Reality. When all things are Suchness, then eating is also Suchness. When all things are One Awareness, then eating also is One Awareness. When all things are Awakened Intelligence, then eating is also Awakened Intelligence. Any name that can be applied to it and the Reality spoken of are this intimacy so we can call all of this intimately single. ...

    Gassho, Jundo
    SatToday

    Last edited by Jundo; 02-15-2016, 05:46 PM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE
  • Jakuden
    Member
    • Jun 2015
    • 6142

    #2
    Excellent! Thank you!

    Gassho,
    Jakuden
    SatToday

    Comment

    • Jika
      Member
      • Jun 2014
      • 1337

      #3
      Thank you, Jundo and Shugen.

      I hope to be able to join you sometimes.

      Gassho
      Jika
      #sattoday
      治 Ji
      花 Ka

      Comment

      • Mp

        #4
        Looking good, thank you Shugen.

        Gassho
        Shingen


        Sent from my mobile, cause I am out & about! =)

        Comment

        • Sekishi
          Treeleaf Priest / Engineer
          • Apr 2013
          • 5670

          #5
          Awesome! Thank you Shugen.

          Gassho,
          Sekishi
          #sattoday
          Sekishi | 石志 | He/him | Better with a grain of salt, but best ignored entirely.

          Comment

          • Sue
            Member
            • Jan 2016
            • 32

            #6
            I am grateful for this information and if time allows I will be taking part.
            Deep bows to Shugen and Jundo.
            Sue
            Sat today
            Gassho
            Sue
            Sat today

            Comment

            • Shokai
              Treeleaf Priest
              • Mar 2009
              • 6391

              #7
              _/\_
              合掌,生開
              gassho, Shokai

              仁道 生開 / Jindo Shokai

              "Open to life in a benevolent way"

              https://sarushinzendo.wordpress.com/

              Comment

              • Washin
                Treeleaf Unsui
                • Dec 2014
                • 3750

                #8
                Thank you all. Looking forward to practising together.
                Gassho
                Washin
                justsat
                Kaidō (皆道) Every Way
                Washin (和信) Harmony Trust
                ----
                I am a novice priest-in-training. Anything that I say must not be considered as teaching
                and should be taken with a 'grain of salt'.

                Comment

                • Shugen
                  Treeleaf Unsui
                  • Nov 2007
                  • 4535

                  #9
                  Hello all,

                  Thank you Jundo for that wonderful introduction to the practice of Oryoki!

                  We will meet Sundays beginning at 9:30am New York City time (6:30am Los Angeles time, 2:30pm London time). Each session will last under an hour.

                  Does the first Sunday in March (the 6th) sound like a good starting date? That should give us plenty of time to gather any materials that we may need.

                  (I will post a list of materials and instructions on how to create a “homemade” Oryoki set in the upcoming days)

                  I look forward to learning together!

                  Gassho,

                  Shugen

                  #sattoday
                  Last edited by Shugen; 02-16-2016, 11:58 PM.
                  Meido Shugen
                  明道 修眼

                  Comment

                  • Sue
                    Member
                    • Jan 2016
                    • 32

                    #10
                    Shugen, Sundays are looking good for me. I was just promoted at work and it looks like Sunday will finally be an off work day for me so I am excited to hopefully be participating.
                    Looking forward to receiving your instructions and materials list.
                    Gassho,
                    Sue
                    Sat today
                    Gassho
                    Sue
                    Sat today

                    Comment

                    • Kyonin
                      Treeleaf Priest / Engineer
                      • Oct 2010
                      • 6739

                      #11
                      Thank you Jundo and Shugen.

                      Will love to see you there.

                      Gassho,

                      Kyonin
                      #SatToday
                      Hondō Kyōnin
                      奔道 協忍

                      Comment

                      • Shugen
                        Treeleaf Unsui
                        • Nov 2007
                        • 4535

                        #12
                        Originally posted by Sue
                        Shugen, Sundays are looking good for me. I was just promoted at work and it looks like Sunday will finally be an off work day for me so I am excited to hopefully be participating.
                        Looking forward to receiving your instructions and materials list.
                        Gassho,
                        Sue
                        Sat today
                        Congratulations on your promotion!

                        Gassho,

                        Shugen

                        #sattoday


                        Shugen
                        明道 修眼
                        As a priest in training, please take everything I say with a "pinch of salt"
                        Meido Shugen
                        明道 修眼

                        Comment

                        • Sue
                          Member
                          • Jan 2016
                          • 32

                          #13
                          Shugen thank you.
                          Gassho
                          Sue
                          Sat today.
                          Gassho
                          Sue
                          Sat today

                          Comment

                          • Jika
                            Member
                            • Jun 2014
                            • 1337

                            #14
                            Wow, Shugen, how did you manage to see I got hungry during Zazen?

                            I could need some input what food is good for oryoki beginners.
                            My Rohatsu attempt did not exactly yield ambrosia (while all foods being so, some taste mixtures are more easily appreciated...)

                            Gassho
                            Jika
                            #sattoday
                            治 Ji
                            花 Ka

                            Comment

                            • Shugen
                              Treeleaf Unsui
                              • Nov 2007
                              • 4535

                              #15
                              Hi Jika,

                              I like to keep it pretty simple, especially at first. In the largest bowl (the "Buddha" bowl) something plain, like rice or some type of grain. In the second bowl, something a little more flavorful, yogurt and fruit or some cooked vegetables. And in the final, smallest bowl, perhaps a soup or some juice.. All of the bowls have names by the way, which we will learn. The trick is to pick things that aren't too messy but are still satisfying. One of the nice things about going on retreats is that the food is decided for you, you just choose how much to take!

                              We will be taking it nice and slow with this so we'll have plenty of time to work things out.

                              Gassho,

                              Shugen

                              #sattoday


                              Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
                              Meido Shugen
                              明道 修眼

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