Buddha’s Kesa is Lived

On this day:

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I didn’t look out for the Golden Gate Bridge, or view the impressive skyline from the Bay Bridge. No, I was reading this booklet. It is inspiring. It is about the Buddha’s robe, the kesa. It is about The Tradition of Sewing Practice in the Shunryu Suzuki-roshi American Lineage. I’d just bought it at the Berkeley Zen Center.

In one of the Forewords to the booklet Mel Weitsman speaks thus:

When we had the first Lay Ordination at Zen Center in 1970, I remember Suzuki-roshi saying: “When we receive lay ordination, it’s not that you’re receiving something that makes you better than other people. We don’t receive lay ordination just for ourself, but we do this to encourage other people, to encourage everyone. And we do it to encourage each other’s practice.”

On this day:

Lots of other stuff happened; a wonderful vegetarian lunch near the Civic Center, visits to the Fo Guang Shan temple, to Lacis–Museum of Lace and Textiles (they sell stuff too), to the Berkeley Hat Shop (replaced hat I’d lost in Seattle) and then to my companions workroom. There to be found tankas’ he’d painted, magnificent altars, statues he’d painted, inspiring books, inspiring thoughts. And good tea brewed by his wife.

This was a day, of everydays, when the Buddha’s kesa lives. Many thanks Mike, you are inspiration. And an encouragement since before Buddhism found me.

Please know that you can buy the booklet I refer to in this article by going to Buddha’s Robe Is Sewn.

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One thought on “Buddha’s Kesa is Lived”

  1. “When we receive lay ordination, it’s not that you’re receiving something that makes you better than other people. We don’t receive lay ordination just for ourself, but we do this to encourage other people, to encourage everyone. And we do it to encourage each other’s practice.”

    What a wonderful way it is put. These are the words I’ve searched for every time I am asked about why we train.
    I tend to look to Bodhidharma’s plain sitting facing a wall as his example to the world but is this too lofty a view? No the above quote puts it in plain ordinary language.
    Thank you for that.

    Norman

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