NZC teachers, Dosho and Tetsugan Photo by Ron Semerena
The dharma is vast and subtle, We now have a chance to see this, Study this and practice this, May we realize its true meaning.
We chant the above verse at the Zen Center on Sundays before the dharma talk. Through this ritual, we give voice to our commitment the see, study, and practice the truth of each moment. This takes courage, especially in our current times where political mudslinging, war, poverty, and violence fill the headlines. Facing this reality, our hearts hurt with the vastness of our self-created and socially-constructed suffering.
What is the source of this madness? What can we do to help relieve the heart-wrenching cries of so many beings in the world today?
As our mission statement suggests, we believe in the very real possibility of awakening and liberating all beings - seeing what the Buddha saw, and living in peace and harmony. The good news of Zen is that together we can heal the divided heart and help others do the same.
During the past three years, under the guidance of our teachers, Dosho and Tetsugan, we’ve worked diligently to make the Nebraska Zen Center a refuge for open-hearted inquiry and a resource for contemplative practices. In addition to weekday sittings, Sunday practice, classes, introductory workshops, dharma talks, and one-to-one meetings with the teachers, NZC has now become a destination for those interested in intensive Zen retreats. At the July retreat, for example, practitioners traveled from Pennsylvania, Georgia, Virginia, California, Michigan, and Canada, to join with local Zen students to practice together in community.
Past contributions from donors like you have benefitted practitioners from far and near by providing a calm and inviting space that includes a meditation hall, kitchen, and sleeping rooms, plus a recently renovated deck with pergola to enjoy a cup of tea or informal dinner while viewing the ever-changing scenery of the Timeless Peace Contemplative Garden.
In this reflective environment, practitioners receive guidance and encouragement in examining and letting go of habitual ways of acting and reacting, learning instead new ways of being in their daily lives - at work, in the community, with family, friends, and neighbors. Sharing the fruits of spiritual practice with those who may never step foot in the meditation hall is a significant aspect of this inner work, for our vow is to serve all beings as best we can, maintaining a “don’t know” mind, without attachment to outcomes.
Today I am asking for your financial support so that we may continue offering a path of inquiry and awakening at the Nebraska Zen Center. Your gift will help provide financial support to our teachers who donate much of their time to maintaining the center as a vital resource for authentic Zen practice, and will widen the circle of those who have a chance to “see, study, and practice” the Buddha Way. Our ability to share the dharma far and wide is only made possible through the unflagging energy of our volunteers, and the generous financial contributions of members, students, and friends like you.
Please join us in upholding this practice by giving a gift of $25, $50, $100 or more to keep the Nebraska Zen Center available to all those seeking a vital source of wisdom and compassion.