Sunday, April 2, 2017 10:30am Festival of Manjusri Bodhisattva Manjusri is the Bodhisattva of Wisdom. His name translates as “Gentle Glory”, “the Wonderful Fortunate One”, or “the One who is Noble and Gentle”. He is usually portrayed as a fair youth or maiden riding a fierce lion-like beast representing the self. In one hand he holds a sword with which to free oneself from attachments and delusion; in the other hand he holds a blue lotus upon which rests The Scripture of Great Wisdom. In Soto Zen monastic meditation halls Manjusri often appears on the altar as a monk whose body merges with the beast – that is, becomes one with the unconverted ego through the complete and loving conversion of the self.
Friday, April 7 – Sunday, April 9, 2017 Introductory Retreat Introductory Retreats begin to provide some answers to the questions that bring us to Buddhist practice. These retreats offer guests new to Shasta Abbey an introduction to the Serene Reflection (Soto Zen) practice in a monastic setting. They provide down-to-earth suggestions for taking this practice into one’s daily life outside the monastery gates. Within the monastic schedule, and in silence as much as possible, Introductory Retreats offer meditation instruction, short periods of seated meditation, Dharma talks and informal discussions with time for your questions. There is also the opportunity for private spiritual counseling.
Sunday, April 9, 2017 10:30am Festival of the Birth of the Buddha This ceremony celebrates the Buddha Shakyamuni’s birth, traditionally observed in Mahayana Buddhism on April 8. His birthplace in Lumbini Park, a beautiful garden in what is now Nepal, is represented by a flower-adorned canopy, under which a statue of a small child Buddha stands upright pointing to heaven and earth proclaiming His appearance in the world. The white elephant, upon which the canopy rests, is a symbol of holiness in Asia and figured prominently in a dream of His mother, Queen Maya, at the time of His conception.
Thursday, April 13, 2017 10:30am Renewal of Vows Ceremony
Sunday, April 16, 2017 10:30am Festival of Great Master Keizan Together with Great Master Dogen, Great Master Keizan Jokin is honored as one of the co-founders of Soto Zen in Japan. His dedicated efforts in the 14th century caused the tradition to spread widely throughout the country, and his warm-hearted concern for the common people earned him the epithet of “the mother of Soto Zen”. Keizan wrote most of our Soto Zen ceremonial. He founded Soji-ji Temple, one of the two head monasteries in Japan, where Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett studied and trained. His Denkoroku: The Record of the Transmission of the Light is a key text studied in our tradition.
Tuesday, April 18, through Thursday, April 27, 2017 The monastery will be closed as we observe our Spring Monastic Retreat.
Friday, April 28, 2017 10:00 Alms Round in Mount Shasta
Saturday, April 29, 2017 10:30am Renewal of Vows Ceremony
Saturday, May 13, 2017 9:30am Friends of Shasta Abbey (FOSA) Workday
Friday, May 19 – Sunday, May 21, 2017 Wesak Celebratory Retreat
Saturday, May 20, 2017 3pm Vigil for Wesak
Saturday, May 20, 2017 7pm Ceremony for the Eve of Wesak followed by a celebratory tea in the Dining Hall
Sunday, May 21, 2017 10:30am Festival of Wesak
Sunday, May 21, 2017 1:30pm Wesak Picnic