Friends and Members
When I’m in London I sit with Dogen Sangha London and find them to be one of the best and most sincere Zen groups I have encountered in my travels around Europe and North America. It was also a fun group, which is saying a lot. Zen groups can sometimes be a bit dour and formal. But not this one. They’re ready and willing to ask questions and challenge assumptions. This is essential in Zen practice.
The London Group are sincere, mature, kind and intelligent; and are excellent people to practice with. There is no prissy faux Buddhist BS, and they step on the heads of Demons. Several times.
Dogen Sangha tells it like it is. No holds barred paradox and contradiction, through the lens of zen. A dysfunctional group of misfits. I feel right at home!
Zazen has become, for me, an invaluable tool in my chaotic life. It helps me come back to balance and put down, at least for a few minutes, the problems I have living and working in a busy city. It shows me what is important right now and helps me move forward with the rest of my life without getting too bogged down in difficulties, as I once would have. Dogen Sangha puts Zazen in its rightful place, at the centre of Buddhism, but not being hindered by too much tradition, would be beneficial to anyone from any walk of life.
It’s like drinking plain water. Nothing is added to it. It seems boring and useless, but through the simple taste we discover what we are essentially – clear and free. To practice with others is encouraging and it helps to practice with the attitude that leaves our separate self in the hallway. To practice and study Buddhism to me is a chance to discover and express our true self and see what reality is beyond words. Discovering our original freedom and happiness.
I’m currently living in Maidstone, which seems to be a bit of a Zen-Buddhism desert, so I was glad when a friend pointed me to the Dogen Sangha in London. I sit regularly on my own, but sitting with others is a completely different experience. The discussions over tea are always thought provoking and often inspiring. I felt at home from the start – the group’s very welcoming. I particularly value its down-to-earth atmosphere and the openness and honesty I experience in the discussions.
For me meditation and zazen has been thoroughly enjoyable as i enjoy learning from life. I got to know my conditioned ego’s desires and shadow self and who i was. I could make peace within myself and let true self be fore only by knowing every part of myself. In inner peace i am at ease with perfect imperfection of everything in my life as myself. And I loved creating arts that was brought by practicing zazen as i was not in any sorts of focus group to share what i was going through. Zazen and digesting self development that was brought by Zazen in arts may be my life time practices as they sit together very well! ease have a look my art work here. http://cargocollective.com/saoriito. So may be see you next wed for the sitting.
I’m sitting with Andrew’s group, I can feel it, my right foot is going numb, this is the first time , I’ve sat with Andrew’s group, this is the first time I’ve sat with anyone’s group. At some point during the sitting it occurs to me that this is exactly what i want to be doing at this moment I continue sitting with Andrew’s group I start sitting at home – sometimes enthusiastically, sometimes reluctantly, sometimes in desperation … II about 6 months later work problems OVERWHELM me, in desolation and confusion I sit. A space opens up where there is no problems, I look around this space, then it goes. Next morning I sit, at some point it occurs to me that my problems are not caused by other people but are caused by ME – by my habitual behaviours and thoughts . I start to change things get better. III today I’m sitting with Andrew’s group my right foot is going numb.