News & Events | July 2019
July 05, 2019 by Kojin Heath
While unusually busy this year, Summer Interim Period has been fulfilling and fruitful. As the residential sangha continues to live and practice together, the natural order of mountain life unfolds. During this time, like every year before, the raven pair of Apple Canyon raise their young, blossoms of spring disappear and sparing bursts of summer buds sprout up. The evening skies are often filled with pink clouds—it seems there is always something striking to behold. And along with the undeniable rugged beauty of mountain life, living in a remote region of Southern California presents challenges, requiring a persistent and dogged work ethic.
Recently, numerous maintenance and repair projects have predominated work practice, allowing students ample opportunity to actualize zazen off the cushion through ordinary, day-to-day activity, while continuing the precious work of maintaining the grounds and buildings of Yokoji. Whether you join us for Sunday program and cleanup, or spend a few days at Yokoji, life at the Center is a wonderful opportunity to embrace the fact that Zen practice has no boundaries. When we open ourselves to life itself, we are enriched and transformed.
This month, Yokoji had the honor of hosting the annual meeting of the White Plum Asanga, a gathering of teachers from the lineage of Maezumi Roshi. Coming together from around the world to reconnect with one another, the White Plum Asanga also welcomed new teachers into the lineage. Following the meeting, many expressed their gratitude— the wonderful opportunity to gather together evoked appreciation for the diverse and vibrant nature of Zen as it is expressed today through teachers in our Zen family. The stunning natural environment of our valley supported all who took part, and a sense of warmth, celebration, and reunion permeated this special weekend of early summer.
The ford crossing between the practice house and office building—an area that was severely damaged after the February floods—is now complete. This essential maintenance project, as well as countless other repair projects since, would not be possible without the help of our Kubota tractor. As the tractor is nearing the end of its useful life, we are in need of a new one. If you are able, we ask that you please help us to purchase a new tractor by donating to our Spring Fundraiser. Please click here to donate.