Greetings to All!
I apologize for not returning sooner. I was sick for 7-10 days with a terrible cold/sinus infection that made me tired and lacking focus. I'm just now back up to 98% health. So I thought I'd stop by.
I hope all of you are well.
I have great news to share!
1. I have seen the document signed by Ven. Dr. Kelsang Chitta Karuna (Provost and Dean) and Ven. Dr. Karuna Dharma (Factulty Advisor Emeritus) that transfers Ven. Dr. Thich Thien-an's Buddhist Studies Institute - Los Angeles to our Abbot at the Five Mountain Zen Order. We will post a link to this document on the new web site for the Buddhist Studies Institute - Los Angeles in January, 2013. That should put this matter to rest.
2. I have spoken to Ven. Wonji Dharma (Paul Lynch) at length about his authority to be a Zen teacher and I can assure everyone here that he has full credentials and all necessary authority to be a Zen teacher in charge of his own Order, as well as the authority to convey Zen teacher status upon others within his Order. There is a very good reason why Paul hasn't spoken out until now. I don't blame him for not doing so. And I don't envy his task of explaining the unique circumstances behind his silence. At some point in the very near future, he will post to his Zen Mirror web site, and may even link to all necessary credentials and documents. At that point, this matter shall also be put to rest.
I hope at that point people will be able to set aside their animosity and see that the Five Mountain Zen Order -- its founder, teachers, leaders, and clergy -- is dedicated to compassionate, sincere, honest, and diligent adherence to and application of the Dharma. We are trying our level best to meet the needs of practitioners in the West in the 21st century. That may appear to some that we're disregarding the old traditions. It may appear to others that we're forging a new kind of Zen. But it may appear to those whom we serve, and with whom we learn, that we are addressing correct situation, correct function, and correct relationship. We ask, "What is it?" and answer "Don't know."
In short, we strive to keep our minds clear moment after moment after moment -- not for our sake; rather, to be able to ask, "How may I help you?" to those whom we encounter on the Path.
Thank you for your time reading this. If anyone would like to befriend me on Facebook, I believe my URL ends with charamabhavika. Thus: https://www.facebook.com/charamabhavika
That might get you there. If not, just type in Charama Bhavika in the search bar on Facebook.
Feel free to send me a friend request! I'd love to hear from you.
Many Bows On Sunny Day,
"If you want to attain your true nature, you must have Great Faith, Great Courage, and Great Question. It is like a three-legged stool...With these supporting your practice, you can attain your true self. You can attain universal substance, and attain your correct way, and truth, and make your life correct. Then you can help all sentient beings get out of suffering. That is our job."
- Zen Master Seung Sahn
Compass of Zen