Father and Son on retreat....

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  • Daijo
    Member
    • Feb 2012
    • 530

    Father and Son on retreat....

    First of all let me say hello to all of you! I don't post much anymore, but I do try to check in from time to time and read the forums. I just don't often have a contribution that would improve upon the silence.

    This post however is to ask all of you to wish me luck! I'm going on a weekend "Metta" retreat with my 15 year old son. Noble silence from Friday through Sunday. I don't know that either of us have stayed silent for that long, ever. Of course the part he is most nervous about isn't the silence, it's the 8 precepts we have agreed to observe. One of which is not eating after twelve noon. (I've promised him a large meal on Friday afternoon before we leave for the monastery...)

    Normally I resit our Friday evening Zazen when I get a free 90 minutes. Please forgive me if I skip this week, as I may need a break from the cushion after this weekend. Anyway, wish us luck! I'll give an update upon my return.

  • McGettigan
    Member
    • Apr 2013
    • 40

    #2
    Best of luck! Would love to hear about it when you get back.

    Gassho,
    Mc.

    Comment

    • Shugen
      Treeleaf Unsui
      • Nov 2007
      • 4535

      #3
      Good Luck and Enjoy
      Meido Shugen
      明道 修眼

      Comment

      • Genshin
        Member
        • Jan 2013
        • 467

        #4
        Sounds wonderful. Hope you have a good time!

        All the best & Gassho
        Matt

        Comment

        • Mp

          #5
          Sounds fantastic Chuck, enjoy and let us know how it all goes.

          Gassho
          Shingen

          Comment

          • Seimyo
            Member
            • Jan 2012
            • 861

            #6
            Good to hear from you Chuck. Hope it's a great experience for both of you.

            Gassho.
            Seimyo

            明 Seimyō (Christhatischris)

            Comment

            • Jiken
              Member
              • Jan 2011
              • 753

              #7
              Thank you to you and your son

              Gassho

              Daido

              Comment

              • Kaishin
                Member
                • Dec 2010
                • 2322

                #8
                Great idea, thanks for sharing! Would love to hear a report of how it goes when you're finished!
                Thanks,
                Kaishin (開心, Open Heart)
                Please take this layman's words with a grain of salt.

                Comment

                • arnold
                  Member
                  • Mar 2013
                  • 78

                  #9
                  Chuck, this sounds wonderful; father and son exploring loving kindness together in a nurturing environment. I am sure this will be of tremendous benefit. I am Very happy for you and your son.

                  Comment

                  • Shokai
                    Treeleaf Priest
                    • Mar 2009
                    • 6391

                    #10
                    Chuck;
                    Wonderful, our thoughts go with you

                    gassho, Shokai
                    合掌,生開
                    gassho, Shokai

                    仁道 生開 / Jindo Shokai

                    "Open to life in a benevolent way"

                    https://sarushinzendo.wordpress.com/

                    Comment

                    • KellyRok
                      Member
                      • Jul 2008
                      • 1374

                      #11
                      Wow, this sounds like a great experience for you to share together. Please let us know how it goes when you get the time. Enjoy!

                      Gassho,
                      Kelly/Jinmei

                      Comment

                      • Daijo
                        Member
                        • Feb 2012
                        • 530

                        #12
                        So we are back from our weekend of noble silence and Metta practice. All in all it was a great experience, and it’s nice to see teachers from different traditions working together. It’s not often, that I know of, to see monks from the Forest tradition teaching in Mahayana monasteries. As far as the teachings go, it was different. Definitely not what I’m used to. The Metta practice taught by these two monks is very intense. I thought we would sit on a cushion and do the typical verses, “self, revered, neutral, and difficult”, etc…But no, we spent the entire retreat just focusing on personal metta and it was done in a very methodical process. They also broke up the sitting with quite a bit of walking meditation (at one point I was in front of the line, and yes…apparently I was walking to slow…..damned Soto Zen Buddhists!) They also threw in some standing meditation and we were even encouraged to take a nap on Saturday afternoon! That was pleasant. Don’t get me wrong, there was also a sitting o’ plenty. If any of you are familiar with Chinese Buddhism you’ll know that the cushions are about half the height of a zafu. After two or three 30 minute sessions you really start to miss the zafu if that’s what you’re used too. So, with the permission of the teacher(s), I doubled up! It wasn't exactly right, but it was much closer to home.

                        It was a great experience over all, not something I would want to commit to as a full time practice, but definitely worth trying. The best part of the retreat was having my son with me. We both share a pretty similar outlook on life, so even in noble silence, a certain look from one of us, and we'd both crack a smile. And there were plenty of little inside jokes for us to share in that manner.

                        One of the high lights of the weekend was an instruction in “pre sitting stretches”. According to the teacher Bikkhu Kai Yin, these 12 stretches were created by a Buddhist master who was also highly disciplined in yoga. I don’t know where that story comes from or whether or not it’s true, but the stretches seemed to be perfectly designed for zazen. I’ll definitely try to implement them into my routine whenever possible. I’ll be in that full lotus in no time! Well maybe not, but I’ll be much more willing to try it more often.

                        Anyway, that’s my review of the metta retreat. Perhaps Charlie will share his take on it all, since I believe he’ll be joining us here at Tree Leaf.

                        Comment

                        • Jinyo
                          Member
                          • Jan 2012
                          • 1957

                          #13
                          Thanks for the feedback - glad it was a rewarding experience.

                          Gassho

                          Willow

                          Comment

                          • Kaishin
                            Member
                            • Dec 2010
                            • 2322

                            #14
                            Thanks for the update, Chuck!
                            Thanks,
                            Kaishin (開心, Open Heart)
                            Please take this layman's words with a grain of salt.

                            Comment

                            • Dosho
                              Member
                              • Jun 2008
                              • 5784

                              #15
                              Awesome experience...thank you for sharing it!

                              Gassho,
                              Dosho

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