Zuisei Sensei’s Talks

The Radical Act of Self Love

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Lovingkindness, one of the Four Imeasurables, is also the ninth of the ten paramis or paramitas (perfections). In this talk Zuisei Sensei speaks of the hunger we all have for love and warmth, for the touch, the regard, of another human being. We are hungry to belong and to know ourselves as part of a whole. Lovingkindness for ourselves can teach us that we have never been apart, never been broken. That is why we’re able to offer immeasurable love to ourselves and others.

Recorded at Zen Mountain Monastery, 01/29/2016

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01 : Karaniya Metta Sutta

02 :The Art of Eating by M. F. K. Fisher

03 : St. Francis and the Sow by Galway Kinnell

Determination Paramita

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In the eighth talk in this series of ten talks on the paramitas or perfections, Zuisei Sensei speaks on determination as “the unshakeable resolve to do whatever benefits others.”

Determination helps us to keep moving forward and keep discovering what there is to uncover along this path. It is a fierce commitment to realizing our potential and awakening, despite all hardship and possible resistance.

Recorded at Zen Center of New York City 01/09/2016

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Diligence Paramita

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In the fifth talk in this series of ten talks on the paramitas or perfections, Zuisei Sensei speaks about our relationship to diligence or discipline and its place in and importance for the path.

Instead of seeing discipline as doing what we have to do because it’s ‘good for us,’ we can think about it as the exercise of self power—as wanting to do what we have to do. This means aligning our actions with a deep desire and a carefully thought-out intent. Diligence is not a vague sense of responsibility or actions that come out of our fear of consequences, but the practice of being in harmony with ourselves and our environment.

Recorded at Zen Mountain Monastery 12/12/2015

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01 : Ten Paramitas

02 : Understanding Our Mind by Thich Nhat Hanh

03: No Coward Soul is Mine by Emily Bronte

Meditation Paramita

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In the fourth talk in this series of ten talks on the paramitas or perfections, Zuisei Sensei speaks of meditation as the practice of seeing ourselves in the totality of our beings.

Meditation is about exercising both sharp concentration and clear seeing. It is recognizing that there is much in our lives that is extraneous but, as the author of the Cloud of Unknowing says, there is one thing that is necessary. What is that one thing?

Recorded at Zen Mountain Monastery 11/20/2015

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Renunciation Paramita

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In the third talk in this series of ten talks on the paramitas, Zuisei Sensei speaks on the importance of renunciation:

“What if we think of renunciation as the protest against anything that gets in the way of our clear seeing? Renunciation of noise, of distraction, of self-serving thoughts, of doubt, of arrogance, of greed and fear and laziness, harshness and the need to control.”

Recorded at Zen Center of New York City 11/14/2015

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01 : Ten Paramitas by Thanissaro Bikkhu

02 : The Four Immeasurables

03: Dhamma Fighting by Ajahn Chah

Virtue Paramita

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In the second talk in this series of ten talks on the paramitas or perfections, Zuisei Sensei speaks on the importance of cultivating virtue as a quality that brings us to regard all beings fully.

So instead of thinking of virtue as purity, we can think of it as a careful, loving, seeing of all things and all beings. This kind of seeing involves a letting go, an emptying of ourselves so we can meet another fully.

Recorded at Zen Mountain Monastery 10/18/2015

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01 : Ten Paramitas by Thanissaro Bikkhu

02 : Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard

03: Breast cancer surgeon who sings to patients , New York Times

Patience Paramita

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Paramita in Sanskrit is translated as “gone to the beyond”, or “gone to the other shore.” It is is also known as “perfection,” in the sense of “wholeness” or “completeness,” and refers to a set of qualities that are based on the realization and cultivation of wisdom.

In the first talk in this series of ten talks on the Paramitas, Zuisei Sensei speaks on the importance of cultivating patience: “Patience arises out of seeing what is. It’s accepting what is. It’s not opposing what is. It’s enduring what is. Patience is not fighting, not rejecting or resenting or begrudging. Patience is wholeheartedly embracing reality.”

Recorded at Zen Mountain Monastery 09/25/2015

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01 : Ten Paramitas by Thanissaro Bikkhu

02 : The All Embracing Net of Views Translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi

03: No Time to Loose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva by Pema Chodron