Roshi making her New Year's resolutions
March 07 Newsletter » Winter Sesshin

STEVE JUNRYU REED
Photos: STEVE JUNRYU REED and STEVE KOSHO THEBERGE

The air was chilly, but not frigid. The afternoon sun cast long
shadows. The sounds of breezes and gentle footsteps followed the
single-file procession up the road.

On New Year’s Eve, members of the Village Zendo sangha made their
annual “long walk” to a state forest near the Winter Sesshin retreat
center in Litchfield, Conn.  This year, rather than walking in the
evening, the group made the procession in the wan sunlight of the
winter afternoon.

First, Roshi prompted sangha members to write “something to leave
behind,” such an unmindful attachment or practice, on a small piece of
paper. They brought those slips with them on the walk, which was held
in silence.

Sangha members then burned their papers in a ceremonial fire on a rock
at the state park, allowing their attachments to thin into ash and
dissipate into the winter sky.

After the walk back, the group completed the sesshin with open sozan
and bells to ceremonially ring in the new year. After the silence of
the retreat had been broken, sangha members had a small party to see in
2007.

Kinhin

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