New Year's greetings from the teachers

Dear sangha friends,

The long dark days are beginning to grow shorter, as happens every year in our part of the world where the seasons are so distinct—well, maybe not so distinct here on the raincoast. And every year the return of the light is an object of wonder and remark, despite its familiarity.  In our darkest moments, it’s so easy to believe that our life is defined by our hurt, depression, anxiety, woundedness. That our world is defined by suffering. Perhaps the greatest gift of our practice, is not some distant ideal of perfect enlightenment, but the capacity to be fully present with life-as-it-is, moment by moment, in all its beauty and pain and absurdity.  

On New Year’s Eve close to eighty people showed up to sit together at the zendo, and to share our intention to cultivate peace in our hearts, our families, our communities, our world. It’s encouraging that so many people want to practice a way of living in this world with a quiet mind and open heart. We hope that with your support the Mountain Rain Zendo can continue to provide a community venue for dharma practice in the year to come.

With deep gratitude for your generosity and your practice, and our wishes for peace, joy and well-being in 2015.

Shinmon Michael and Myoshin Kate