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Lions Roar : March 2012
SHAMBHALA SUN MARCH 2012 80 to their needs. For example, it’s customary for married women to tend a family altar for their husband’s ancestors, but they’ve enlarged tradition by setting up second altars for their own ancestors. Meditation isn’t an important part of their practice, but rituals are. Arai says that “the types of practices found in domestic Zen are done amidst the sound of water running for the laundry, dishes, and baths. Add- ing [sacred] water to the rice the family will eat for dinner is seen as much of a key ingredient in nurturing the family as are soy sauce and seasoning.” In addition to tending their family altars, the women chant, copy sutras and images of figures like Kannon, ingest sacred sym- bols and sacred water for healing, join in communal ceremonies at the temple, meet together in small groups for rituals, go on pilgrimage, and participate in arts like cal- ligraphy, flower arranging, and the way of tea. In times of crisis they chant Nenpi Kan- non Riki (“I call on the power of Kannon”). On many different levels, they find the refuge of the guest in these practices. For example, everything in the universe is seen as a buddha, but the ancestors on their fam- ily altars are “personal buddhas” to whom they can bring their whole selves. Gyokko Sensei explains, “I don’t feel that they will just take care of my problems. I feel that they will look with warm affection. I do pray they help things go in a good direction.” In Japan it’s customary when someone returns home to call out “I’m home!” and whoever is in the house replies, “Your return home is welcomed!” Honda-san always calls out in this way when she returns home, even though she lives alone. She’s speaking to the personal buddhas on her altar, and she hears their welcoming reply in her heart. It’s glorious to hear all the voices in Bringing Zen Home and Searching for Guan Yin—to feel the common yearnings, the different responses to them, and the ways that host and guest can blend into each other. These women’s prayers, their outer and inner pilgrimages, and their understandings have entered the vast net of interconnectedness, and we have the pleasure of receiving their communica- tions, heart-mind to heart-mind. ♦ Tergar 2012 Tergar Events The Mindful Child with Susan Kaiser Greenland Minneapolis, Minnesota • May 3 –6 Exploring the Nature of Mind with Drubwang Tsoknyi Rinpoche St. John’s University, Minnesota • June 6 –13 Joy of Living Summer Retreat with Tergar Instructor Tim Olmsted Portland, Oregon • July 13 –19 Joy of Living Summer Retreat with Tergar Instructors Myoshin and Edwin Kelley Minnesota • August 11 –18 Mingyur Rinpoche Drubwang Tsoknyi Rinpoche Susan Kaiser Greenland www.tergar.org Visit our website for Mingyur Rinpoche’s centers and upcoming programs in Oregon, Colorado, Minnesota, Arizona, California, Massachusetts, Illinios, Florida, New York, Mexico, Brazil, Quebec, Russia, Germany, France, Spain, Denmark and Nigeria. Under the guidance of Yongey Mingyur RInpoche