Why Be In This Moment?

The question always comes to, “Why do that?” So now we’re present, now what? Is it for our own enjoyment? That’s okay, that’s nice; we all want our own enjoyment. But that brings us back to suffering because we’re only happy as long as it brings us joy. As soon as that joy is gone, we’re not happy anymore, and then we leave the moment.
 
So why be in the moment? What’s our intention? What’s our direction? What is it that we are after?
 
Zen Master Bon Soeng
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Struggle and Bliss

We think we understand what's good and what's bad, but we don't know. So just breathe! And then whatever happens, that's what happens. You learn from all of it. That struggle is powerful. That moment of bliss is also powerful. There is something to be gleaned from all of it. It's just the craving of one and the pushing away of the other that creates a problem.
 
By Zen Master Bon Soeng
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1 Day Online Retreat May 23rd

Retreat is a time to look inside and investigate our life. It is an opportunity to clear our mind of habitual thinking and access our wisdom and compassion.

Empty Gate Zen Center has closed and canceled all public practices due to the COVID-19 situation. Retreats will be held online until further notice.

1 day retreats include extended sitting, walking meditation, and private interviews with Jason Quinn JDPSN. Everyone is invited to participate, regardless of experience or traditions.

To register: https://emptygatezen.com/pl/157750

For more info: https://www.emptygatezen.com/online-retreat

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Fundraiser 2020

Dear Friends of Empty Gate Zen Center:

Thank you so much for all of your ongoing support. Whether you're a long-time member of Empty Gate Zen Center or a recent first-time visitor to our Zen Center, we value your contributions.

The current situation with the Coronavirus has made funding for our Zen Center more difficult. We rely on retreats for a portion of our revenue and those retreats have been moved online. There is great uncertainty as to whether we will be able to maintain our revenue with online retreats. As we move forward during this unusual time, we need to make sure our finances stay strong so that we can continue our offerings into the future.

This has been an interesting time, as being online has connected our practice locations in a way we were not connected before. Our Dharma talks and online practice offerings have brought people from all over the globe together. Even more, our members in Boise and at our sister Zen Center in Fairbanks, Alaska have connected...

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Letting Go Of Attachment

Letting go of that attachment means that we can be in the real and what’s true. We build this capacity to stay present or we find the capacity we already have. The more we let go of attachment to self, the more we find freedom. We practice to find that place before “Self”. What I am suggesting is the more we stay with what’s true and not get caught up in "I", then we already have it. It’s not some distant fantasy. It’s already here.

By Zen Master Bon Soeng

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Cancellations and Online Practice

Empty Gate Zen Center has closed and canceled all public practices at our Berkeley, Bosie, and Santa Clara locations due to the COVID-19 situation. In response, we will offer online streams via Zoom. Visit our Weekly Practice Schedule for more info. http://emptygatezen.com/practice-schedule

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The Meditation Pill

If I can connect with what I am doing, I can stay grounded and pay attention to those reactions, see them and not get carried away with them. It doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the good times or despair the bad times. But if I stay grounded, connected with something beyond my likes and dislikes, then there is some stability and clarity in my life because I am not jumping all around getting lost in my reactions.

If somebody calls me something that I don’t like and that raises my anger, I then start acting out of my anger and lose any clarity that I may have found. I am in a dream of anger. I know from my own experience, I end up responding in ways that are usually less constructive and more likely just add fuel to the fire. But if I can keep connected with something and not get lost in the dream of my anger, I might be able to actually see what is happening in the moment and deal with it.

But if I think that my meditation is this pill that I take, then I’m holding...

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