Life & Death: 9 lectures on Shobogenzo Zenki and Shoji

by Shohaku Okumura

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    Thirteen hours of teaching by Shohaku Okumura on these chapters of Dogen Zenji's Shobogenzo. This kind of in-depth analysis of the text and its applicability to our daily life and practice is not available anywhere else. Includes PDF with Okumura Roshi's translations of Shobogenzo Zenki and Shoji, along with versions of the koan "Alive or Dead" from a variety of sources. When the commentary is directly related to the text of Shobogenzo Zenki or Shoji the paragraph and sentence number have been indicated in the track notation. Also includes translations by Okumura Roshi and his dharma brother Tom Wright of a collection of Uchiyama Roshi's dharma poems entitled LIFE AND DEATH
    Okumura Roshi lectured on two texts from Shobogenzo: Zenki (Total Function) and Shoji (Life and Death) at Sanshinji during the November 2009 Genzo-e. Examining the koan "Alive or Dead" as an entry point, he captured the essence of living and dying within this interdependent network of Life and Death.
    During a 5 day Genzo-e Retreat at Sanshinji, Okumura Roshi gives 2 lectures per day, each approximately 90 minutes. These lectures have been minimally edited and divided by topic for ease of listening. These talks were given using Okumura Roshi’s own translation of the texts and are an invaluable tool for the exploration of Zen practice and outlook.
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about

In 1996, Shohaku Okumura Roshi founded Sanshin Zen Community in order to form and strengthen the network of various Zen groups and individual practitioners who are interested in his style of teaching and practice. At that time he also envisioned the establishment of a center where the teachings of Dogen Zenji could be studied deeply and put into practice. This vision became a reality in 2003 when Sanshiji, Sanshin Zen Community’s practice center, was established in Bloomington.

Sanshin Zen Community’s Genzo-e (literally, “Shobogenzo gathering”) Retreat is an important element in Okumura Roshi’s ongoing endeavor to present the profound and often difficult teachings of Dogen Zenji in a way that is accessible to English speakers. During these retreats, Okumura Roshi lectures extensively on one or more chapters of Dogen Zenji’s great foundational philosophical work, Shobogenzo (True Dharma Eye Treasury). His lectures present insights received through years of study of this ancient text and a life devoted to the practice of its teachings. The Genzo-e lectures are a truly unique offering, opening doors to the teachings of one of the most important masers in the history of Japanese Buddhism.

This publication of Genzo-e lectures is one step in the continued effort to make Okumura Roshi’s work available. Many people have generously contributed their time and energy to this project and with continued support and interest we hope the audio project will flourish and evolve to help many people’s study of Dogen Zenji.

For information on how you can participate with the audio project or get involved at Sanshin Zen Community visit, www.sanshinji.org, or email admin@sanshinji.org.

credits

released 28 September 2012

Shokaku Okumura is a Zen Buddhist priest who is recognized internationally as a leading authority on the teachings of the great Japanese Zen master Eihei Dogen. He travels widely offering retreats and lecturing on Dogen Zenji’s teachings. Okumura Roshi has translated many Buddhist teachings from Japanese, and his writings have appeared in various Buddhist periodicals. He is also the founder of Sanshin Zen Community, an international Buddhist Sangha headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana.

While he was a student at Komazawa University in Tokyo, Okumura Roshi was ordained by Kosho Uchyama Roshi in 1970 at Antaiji in Kyoto, Japan. In 1975 he traveled to the United States where he became a founding member of Pioneer Valley Zendo in Charlemont, Massachusetts. In 1981 he returned to Japan where he began his ongoing translation of the works of Dogen Zenji and Uchiyama Roshi, and he eventually served as teacher at the Kyoto Soto Zen Center. After returning to the United States with his wife and two children in 1993, he practiced as the head teacher of Minnesota Zen Center until 1996. After leaving MZMC, he founded Sanshin Zen Community in the same year. He worked for the Soto Zen Buddhism International Center (formerly the Soto Zen Education Center) as the director from 1997 to 2010. Okumura Roshi and his family now reside in Bloomington, Indiana.

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Sanshin Zen Community Bloomington, Indiana

Sanshin Zen Community is an international Buddhist sangha founded in 1996 by Shohaku Okumura, a Soto Zen priest and respected translator of the thirteenth-century Japanese Zen master, Dogen Zenji. Based at Sanshinji in Bloomington, Indiana, Sanshin exists to provide intensive practice of zazen in the style of Kosho Uchiyama-roshi, informed by thorough study of Dogen's teachings and communal work. ... more

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