Teaching What Cannot Be Taught: Skillful Means and the Role of the Buddhist Teacher, with Shugen Sensei and Ryushin Sensei

Northeast USA  

February 8, 2014
10:00 amto4:00 pm

Zen Center of New York City

Buddhist tradition acknowledges the inherent perfection of each individual — the enlightened potential within each one of us. The wisdom and true peace we seek are already here, naturally present. Being our fundamental nature, it cannot be obtained from the outside. At the same time, throughout the history of Buddhism, the importance of studying with a teacher has been emphasized.

What, then, is the role of a Buddhist teacher? In the different schools of Buddhism, the teacher is spoken of in various ways: an example and inspiration, an embodiment of wisdom and compassion, an object of devotion and reverence, a guiding parent, a spiritual friend, a fierce guardian of the Dharma, a mirror, a physician, a thief.

In this retreat, we will investigate the varied and changing roles of a teacher in the Zen tradition, acknowledging the various stages of the path and the challenges that need to be navigated. This will include some of the pitfalls that students can easily fall into when studying with a “spiritual authority.” The purpose of this retreat is to help students understand the profound value in studying with a teacher, and so how to more skillfully study with a teacher; and thus, how to more intimately study and actualize the Dharma in one’s life.

About the Instructors: Shugen Sensei received dharma transmission from Daido Roshi in 1997. He is the head of the MRO and abbot of the Zen Center of New York City. Shugen Sensei also manages the National Buddhist Prison Sangha. He has been in full-time residential training since 1986. His teachings have appeared in various Buddhist journals and in The Best Buddhist Writing 2009. Ryushin Sensei received dharma transmission from Daido Roshi in 2009. He is the abbot of Zen Mountain Monastery. He began studying with Daido Roshi in 1987 and entered residency in 1992. Before becoming a resident, he worked as a pediatrician and a psychiatrist.

Cost: $75 (MRO Students: $65)

For more information, or to register:
Teaching What Cannot Be Taught, with Shugen Sensei & Ryushin Sensei
Zen Center of New York City
500 State Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 875-8229 • zcnyc@mro.org