Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Eido Tai Shimano

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I originally posted this in November last year. Later, I collected it with other posts I considered removing from this blog. Later still, it was suggested I put the posts back ... which I did. Today I got a call from someone who was looking for this particular post and was having a hard time finding it because it was in among other posts headed "putting it back." So ... I am giving it back its own space and title for whoever might find it useful.
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Thursday, November 12, 2009
letter to Eido Tai Shimano
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What follows is a letter I wrote in 1982 to Eido Tai Shimano, the chief executive of Zen Studies Society in New York and Dai Bosatsu Monastery in upstate New York. Mr. Shimano is a Zen teacher.

The reason for posting a letter of so many years ago is not to open the old wounds that bled freely in their time. Nor is it to deny that Zen Buddhism in America has made great strides when it comes to the sexual and financial abuses that it has faced and continues to face from time to time. Nor is it to suggest that I have not been a hypocrite. Nor is it to elevate my own status as a rebel or nay-sayer or promoter of some one true virtue. I too love Zen Buddhism both in its directions and in its experiential truth.

I am posting it as a reminder that the past is or can be very much the present and further that the 'scandals' that have occurred involved very real and particular people and that those people suffered in ways that are contrary to Zen Buddhist teaching. Not for nothing did the teachers of the past make upsetting the sangha a no-no. Not for nothing did they encourage repentance when it was warranted. And not for nothing were they aware that in the human sphere, however elevated and adored, the room for error was and remains a very real possibility.


November 1, 1982

The Rev. Eido Tai Shimano
New York Zendo
223 East 67th St.
New York, NY 11021

Dear Mr. Shimano:

Thank you for your creative letter of Oct. 19, 1982 with its equally masterful enclosure of Oct. 21 to Mr. George (Jochi) Zournas. I must say that as I began to read your work I felt some vestigial hope that you might in fact clear the air, turn some metaphorical corner and clarify what, over the years, has become murky with the stuff that Soen Roshi has learned to call your “lies.” By the time I finished reading your words, I was, of course, disappointed if not surprised.

“So much sitting, so many sesshins, so many dokusans…” and still Soen Roshi calls you a liar. Could you tell me why? Is this perhaps another encouragement to “bravely march on?” Coming as Soen Roshi does out of a society that takes pride in indirection, still he uses this most direct word, “liar.” Why? Coming as he does out of a discipline that enjoins confession and straight-forwardness, he calls you a liar. Why? Among the monks at Dai Bosatsu last summer you managed to plant the idea that Soen Roshi was an alcoholic and/or senile. But why would a senile alcoholic even bother to call you a liar? Politics, you say? – because Soen Roshi wants Dai Bosatsu, to become king of the some American Zen castle? If Soen Roshi actually did want Dai Bosatsu, why not give it to him? Do you not owe him a great debt for his teaching, perhaps as Torei felt he owed Hakuin? As a ‘true man without rank,’ with so many sesshins, so much sitting, and so many dokusans behind you, surely you recognize that the toys of Zen Buddhism – the robes and monasteries and power – are only dreams. Could you, a ‘Zen Mater,’ be fooled by a dream?

But this, of course, is not your understanding. Your understanding seems to be that They are all out to get you – you who are blameless in administration, honest in the dokusan room, pure and “fair” and deserving of respect from those who support and make possible your meaning as a person of rank. It is the questioners who are “insane” or full of “intense personal hatred” or want Your zendo or want Your monastery or hate you because you have money and they have not or don’t understand the ‘Japanese’ group and you…you bear it all so remarkably well, so staunch and patient. You are really very good at it: masterful, if not the master.

Besides those Jochi George Zournas mentioned in his letter (those Others who were out to get you), I would like to take this opportunity to recollect some others, perhaps not quite so august, who have left our own sangha. I am not now referring to those who left because they moved or to those who made an easy personal choice, but rather to those who left after some discovery in that beautiful zendo where there is room for our lifelong practice. True, some left in anger or confusion, but what was it they really discovered? Is it possible they discovered what Soen Roshi called your “lies?” I really don’t know, but I recollect them now and express my sorrow at their leaving: Daishin Peter Gamby, Maishin Mike Sopko, Reimon Ray Crivello, Genmyo Elihu Smith, Sojun George Seraganian, Bunyu David Bogart, Roca Lorca Morello (all of whom were residents as Sho Bo Ji with your blessings),Kanzan Bruce Rickenbacker (your monk who memorized the whole of the Diamond Sutra), Daiko Charles Carpenter (another of your monks), Shoro Lou Nordstrom (another of your monks), Kozen Peter Kaufman (another of your monks), Jonen Sheila Carmen (pseudonym), Wendy Megerman, Nennen Merry White, Toni Snow, Reishu Jim Gordon, Shinso Merete Galesi, Ishin Peter Mathiessen, Jean Day, Carol Binswanger, Jochi George Zournas, Wado Vicki Gerdy, Rinko Peggy Crawford and Mushin Frank LoCicero. You will recall, or course, that, over the years, the list has grown much, much, much longer and is filled with people who did not show sufficient “skepticism about rumors,” as you so quaintly put it.

How many of them came to you directly in 1975 and 1979 (when what were humorously referred to as the “Fuck Follies I” and the ”Fuck Follies II” were unveiled)? How many? Was it 10 or perhaps 20? Without any exception I know of, each of those who came to you directly came in a spirit of admiration and love, in hopes of clarifying a delicate matter without public exposure. The situation: your manipulation of the dokusan setting for your own periodic sexual satisfaction (seducing women); treating lovers taken from within the sangha with contempt once you had finished with them; and taking no candid responsibility for your own behavior but rather answering direct, honest and caring queries with, in one form or another, the line you used in a jam-packed zendo in 1975: “It’s none of your business.”

The line of people outside your door is long, very, very long. In my mind, they wait silently – the They and Them whom you so easily accuse of insanity or intense personal hatred. A long line of crazy people outside your door. What brought them there? Even crazy people have their reasons, don’t you agree?

Look! There’s Merry White. Remember her? She was the one who sent a letter to the Board of Trustees in 1979 outlining without rancor your sexual blackmail. It was she who wrote: “Personally, I found his (your) seductions very distracting and jarring during the first Kessei…I wonder now if I would not have been a better student in the long run without it. ... And last year (1978) during my second stay at Dai Bosatsu, it hurt me that he treated me very distantly for quite a while. When he warmed up, it became sexual again. That kind of either/or situation made it very difficult for me (or, I would think, any woman) to be his student. You want his attention and his help, and that, I think, is how it begins. He takes this emotional opening-up, which is normal and right in a spiritual student-teacher relationship, as a sign of sexual readiness.” Clearly the Board of Trustees, your Board of Trustees, took the only possible sane action by never fully discussing the matter and by issuing a letter, signed by Korin Sylvan Busch stating, “we affirm our confidence in Eido Roshi and his leadership of our sangha.”

And there’s Jane Smith (pseudonym)! Remember her? December 24, 1977, Room 1100A at the Statler Hilton after dinner at Mama Leone’s. Remember how the board of Trustees covered that one when Jochi and Korin, at whose instigation I can only guess, spread lies and rumors about Jane – how she was only dreaming of an affair with you? And how even Jane was drawn into the lies and told them on herself because she believed the truth would be harmful to you and to Zen practice in America? She was the same one who commented later in front of witnesses that “he (you) never even said thank you.”

And Carmen!… But of course you will recall this and much, much more.

On and on and on it goes down that long, long line. Person after person, Bodhisattva after crazy Bodhisattva, each of them willing their suspicions to silence. How is it possible they were so willing, so stupid? Perhaps it was because many people begin their spiritual practice with the understanding that the ascendancy they have previously granted to their emotions and intellect is the source of much suffering. Because of that pain, they were willing to set aside their own emotions and intellect (to the extent possible), and to be as faithful and obedient as possible. Perhaps they counseled themselves that intellect and emotion are more delusion. And perhaps they trusted that your emotions and thoughts were not based in delusion. This trust, however misguided, was surely human and understandable. Unfortunately, it was and is open to manipulation and deceit. There are many I know, myself among them, who practiced with you and were grateful to you, until, a little at a time, they began to wonder. In their wondering, they came to you in their twos and threes and tens, not even caring very much that you took lovers on the side, but curious about a wider pattern of contempt and manipulation. No doubt you saw them as insane people out to take your toys. Well, they didn’t get them, did they?

To some you said your Japanese heritage and samurai code of honor kept you from understanding or responding to these puritanical “barbarians.” Isn’t it odd for a so-called Zen Master who has lived in America for 20 years to claim he understands neither his students nor his environment? Isn’t such a person in the wrong line of work? No doubt it is equally insane to suggest that a real Japanese man would know something of discretion and that a true samurai would not exhibit contempt and dishonesty towards those in his own circle of honorable endeavor.

Of course it was more difficult to use this line on Dr. Tadao Ogura, the psychiatrist who offered to act as arbitrator in the present upheaval. He was the one who suggested taking three “impartial” observers from the sangha with him when he listened to the direct testimony of those involved. The group would then have reported to the Board of Trustees, your own Board of Trustees. Perhaps he too was one of the insane ones, the ones who had to be stopped. And stopped he was when Korin Sylvan Busch, at whose instigation I can only guess, let it be known that three “impartial” sangha members could not be found.

The long line outside your door does not say these things. They are silent. They are gone. It is I who say them, I, Kigen. I take responsibility for saying what I have said and doing what I have done. I have company, but I take responsibility for myself. I am one of Them, those Others whose fault it all is, one of the ones who supported you well, offered you gratitude, did his best to practice the Zen Buddhism of the Patriarchs, lied or remained silent for you on numbers of occasions, lied or remained silent to myself about you, endured and perpetuated your deceits, and, finally...went...”insane.”

It is out of that insanity that I also offer you my most sincere and honest thanks. I offer thanks without irony or sarcasm. You have taught me well and I am grateful. Besides the mechanics of Zen Buddhism, you have also taught me what a Zen Master is not – a teaching worthy of a true Zen Master. Although your teaching lacked the creative clarity, the nurturing of the Buddha Dharma, and the straight-forwardness of a truly enlightened man, still I say your teaching was fine. As I value my life, my Zen practice, so I value this teaching.

This is a time for potential new beginnings – yours, mine, the sangha’s. Always new beginnings. I pray now and will continue to pray that each of us may one day face death with strong, even breaths and perhaps a small smile of true understanding.

Thank you and goodbye.


Adam Fisher


It was during that same time period that I heard perhaps the sharpest rebuke I have ever heard in my life. At one point, Soen Roshi was talking face to face with Mr. Shimano and discussing the reported disharmony Mr. Shimano played a role in. Mr. Shimano offered his responses. And Soen Roshi reportedly said sadly, "Now it comes -- dead rock!"

5,123 comments:

  1. A zen master's life is one continuous mistake.

    Something like this anyway. Who said this?

    ReplyDelete
  2. If moral rightness is a cultural definition and it is not an unvariable truth, why do ALL religious institutions have, as their primary instruction in right behavior, do no harm to others?

    Perhaps Eido Shimano is a zen master. He is also a poor excuse for an enlightened leader of a religious practice. He has no business being a teacher of such. None.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anon January 4, 2011 6:18 PM
    "When we get out of the radiant light hokus pokus the fact is Shimano has both unflinching devotion from remaining students, including Chayat and Marinello AS WELL Shimano is a sociopath.

    Chayat and Marinello have choice
    1) Go with the power of their so called enlightenment experiences accepting their personal debts of gratitude which evidently translates into corrupted collusion.

    or

    2) Turn their hearts in favor of what is morally right and good for the true sangha.

    So far we can all see what and who Chayat and Marinello chooses. "
    ==

    Thank goodness somebody out there understands the enmeshed nature problem and can describe it in a few hundred words.

    Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. The to date fact is, Eido Shimano does not have much so called "unflinching devotion" from either students or heirs remaining at this point.

    This is his peril and opportunity.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous said,

    "When we get out of the radiant light hokus pokus the fact is ....."

    Have you been erased within "the radiant light"?

    Hokus-pocus means sleight of hand or a sham used (esp) to cloak deception. This might well apply to the practice Eido Shimano endorses but "hocus pocus" has something in-common with the experience "this one shining alone"? I think not.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have spent a good piece of the last three years doing zazen and have begun to wonder why all the bother. Wont stop but ...
    ______________________________________
    REDdirt -- Good man! If it has spoken to you for three years, it is likely to continue. Keep on listening.

    There is no punishment if you don't practice zazen. There is no reward if you do. But there is the matter of uncertainty or suffering. Emotional or intellectual gymnastics can hardly keep things in control. What can? Pick your poison.

    ReplyDelete
  7. "Pick your poison?"

    Hah! This is why I dont stop. There seems no end to suffering. Yet when "me" looks at "me" three years back, the poison worth the picking is not poison at all. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  8. "if someone showed you deep inner penatrating light and as a result your deepest sense of gratitude, insight, and personal spirtual "power" grew out of such an experience... would you or would you not be impressed? [...] Those of us who are up at arms against Shimano... can we please stop undermining his level of "spiritual" power."

    There are two issues here. First, I'm aware that these people are really impressed with Shimano. I myself am deeply indebted to my own teacher for similar reasons. I don't mean to downplay the enlightenment mystique and all its addictive qualities.

    On the other hand, it is precisely because I had a similar experience with a different, genuine teacher that I can see that Shimano's so-called spiritual power is actually manipulative and/or fraudulent. I went to great trouble to try and detail this in my letter to the Board (it's in the Archives), though of course it's hard to convey such devices on paper. But that's what I mean about him being a fraud through and through - there's really no comparison here to other "less-than-perfect" masters like Trungpa and Maezumi or whomever. Shimano shamelessly exploits the myth of the zen master to its extreme but, as George Zournas apparently already discovered way back in 1984, when you look into his eyes there's really nothing there. As sad as it is to say, Shimano is really just an empty hulk, kensho or no. And I'm afraid that it's only people who are similarly somehow shallow who can remain impressed with him and his "insight" over the long term - even without all the abuse.

    By the way, re: the purpose of Zen practice: all I can say is that if you're doing it to be the king of some ivory koan tower, you're missing the "pointless point".

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  9. What I find really sad is people's image of "insight" (as they see it). This is the material on which their devotion is manufactured. This is the bit of hope they cling to, and this is why they are willing to overlook the deep character flaws in their "masters".

    In a "spiritual" center, it is in this manner that the most insincere of people may come to rule over and take advantage of the most sincere.

    That's what I can't get over. There are not many people who would wish to spend their lives portraying themselves as something they are not. As such, most people expect, in their "master", the same sincerity. But, very very often -- much too often -- that's just not the case.

    To me, this is the saddest thing. I could care less what Shimano does, or where he ends up. It troubles me that good people still look to him, and others like him.

    -J

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  10. If our practice is 'for all beings', then we must care about what Mr. Shimano does and where he ends up. The fact that he is probably carrying a mental illness diagnosis should make his plight sadder in the eyes of those who try to be compassionate. We cannot, according to Buddhist ethics, stop working towards this goal, as if he were not one of us.

    --Spike

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  11. .
    Spike -- Perhaps there is something to the observation that it is not so much we who imagine he is not one of us but he whose actions depict a man who imagines he is not one of us?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Excuse me? Mr. Shimano's "plight"? You mean the plight of being a sociopath? Or the plight of being finally fingered for four decades of rape? Or the plight of disgrace for his crimes? Or the plight of having to deal with the consequences of his actions? Which plight would you be referring to?

    ReplyDelete
  13. "If our practice is 'for all beings', then we must care about what Mr. Shimano does and where he ends up. The fact that he is probably carrying a mental illness diagnosis should make his plight sadder in the eyes of those who try to be compassionate. We cannot, according to Buddhist ethics, stop working towards this goal, as if he were not one of us."

    Pity and compassion are, to the sociopath, nothing but tools to abuse.

    If you want to pity him, and be compassionate to him - do it only for yourself, because a true sociopath will not be touched but such empathy... deep down they will think it's just another weakness on your part that they can run rough-shod over.
    The best thing for him, and for you, may very well be for you to shun him, and to strip him of his robes and titles and power and to sever all ties with him.

    40 years Spike.
    40 years and he has not changed.
    Eido Shimano uses the love of his students for him against themselves - he's been doing it for years.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This was from a website that came up when I typed in "How to deal with a sociopath" in google.

    "The best way to deal with a sociopath is not to deal with him. Reject him. Cut him off. Have absolutely No Contact.

    No Contact means do not talk to him on the phone. Do not send, open or reply to e-mail. No instant messages or text messages. No cards, letters or packages. And certainly do not see him. (All of this applies to female sociopaths as well.)

    If you're in the midst of legal battles with the sociopath, let all communication go through your lawyer, accountant or another intermediary. (Make sure they understand how sociopaths operate.)

    Easier said than done

    If you've been snared by a sociopath, you may find that you have difficulty maintaining No Contact. You may find yourself thinking about the good times and wanting to talk to him or her. Here are some of the reasons—and why they are not good reasons.

    1. You're still in love
    The person you loved never existed. It was an illusion created by the sociopath to manipulate you. If you still have feelings for him or her, they are feelings for what you wanted the relationship to be, not for what he or she actually is.

    2. You feel sorry for him or her
    The sociopath may cry, plead and grovel, insisting that he or she will change. You want to believe. Unfortunately, this is not possible with sociopaths—they do not change. The predator is using the pity play, trying to take advantage of your good nature and suck you in again. Don't fall for it.

    3. You don't want to admit you were wrong
    You may have a lot invested in the relationship—especially if the sociopath has been taking money from you—and you don't want to lose everything. You think you can force this person to make you whole. Yes, you may negotiate, and he or she may agree to repay you. But don't expect to actually see your money.

    4. You want to have the last word
    You want him or her to understand how hurt you are. You want this person to apologize. Here's what you need to know: The sociopath will never understand your feelings, because sociopaths have no empathy. If he or she apologizes, it will only be a tactic to bleed you some more.

    5. Better the devil you know
    Some people would rather put up with emotional, psychological and even physical abuse than face the unknown. If this is you, understand that it is unlikely the sociopath will treat you any better in the future, and it is very likely that he or she will treat you worse. The unknown may be scary, but it also offers a chance for a new life.

    Change the dynamics

    Why is No Contact important? Sociopaths are experts at breaking down their victims, piece by piece. If you have contact with him or her, you will be back in the game and the sociopath will continue to manipulate you. To begin your recovery, you must put him or her out of your life.

    "No Contact changes the dynamics of the situation. The victim is now in control." That's the view of the manager of The Narcissist and Psychopath website, who has helped hundreds of people.

    With No Contact, you are saying "no more."

    If you must have contact

    Unfortunately, you may have no choice but to have contact with the sociopath, especially if you have children with him. If you're in this situation, here are two important guidelines:

    1. Always be on mental red alert when dealing with a sociopath.
    2. Never deal with a sociopath alone; have a witness.

    Out of the blue

    Months or even years after you end it with the sociopath, he may show up again. He'll tell you he's in trouble, and you're the only one who can help him. What do you do? Don't bail him out. Ignore him. Let him suffer the consequences of his behavior.

    He's testing to see if he can start bleeding you again. Remember, sociopaths do not change."

    ReplyDelete
  15. In fact, take the spiritual dimension out of it... google "how to deal with a sociopath" into google - the consistent message is to Avoid Contact and that Sociopaths Don't Change.

    Here are some quotes from the sites I found:

    "Once you know that the person you are handling is a sociopath, set him/her off from your life and try staying as far away from the person as possible. Trying to cure sociopaths or beating them is equivalent to risking your own life."

    "To deal with a sociopath, do not have any expectations. Sociopaths are only able to take and give nothing in return. Do not wait for a sociopath to change. Accept the person as he or she is."

    "The best way to protect yourself from a sociopath is to avoid him, to refuse any kind of contact or communication. This is not easy as sociopaths tend to turn things around and make you feel guilty, shameful, or inadequate. Often this makes you want to try even harder to please them and get their approval.
    To keep a straight head-and resist temptation- it is best to avoid them completely."

    "There is no known cure or therapy for sociopathy. In fact, some evidence suggests that therapy makes them worse because they use it to learn more about human vulnerabilities they can then exploit. They learn how to manipulate better and they learn better excuses that others will believe. They don't usually seek therapy, unless there is something to gain from it.

    Given all that, there is only one solution for dealing with a sociopath: Get him or her completely out of your life for good. This seems radical, and of course, you want to be fairly sure your diagnosis is correct, but you need to protect yourself from the drain on your time, attention, money, and good attitude. Healing or helping a sociopath is a pointless waste of your life. That is not your mission. It's not your responsibility. You have your own goals and your own life, and those are your responsibility."

    Watch yourself Spike - you are dealing with a master.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Weird - my post was deleted.

    Take the Spiritual angle out of the equation Spike. Imagine he was just a regular person (which he is...) Now google "How to deal with a sociopath".

    2 themes you will see repeat over and over...

    1). No Contact
    2). Sociopaths don't change.

    They cannot feel anything but superficial emotion... Pity and Compassion on your part is just interpreted as weaknesses to be exploited.

    In closing...

    "There is no known cure or therapy for sociopaths. In fact, some evidence suggests that therapy makes them worse because they use it to learn more about human vulnerabilities they can then exploit. They learn how to manipulate better and they learn better excuses that others will believe. They don't usually seek therapy, unless there is something to gain from it.

    Given all that, there is only one solution for dealing with a sociopath: Get him or her completely out of your life for good. This seems radical, and of course, you want to be fairly sure your diagnosis is correct, but you need to protect yourself from the drain on your time, attention, money, and good attitude. Healing or helping a sociopath is a pointless waste of your life. That is not your mission. It's not your responsibility. You have your own goals and your own life, and those are your responsibility."


    You are giving him special consideration because of who he is - if you can imagine him as a regular person (which he is...) what you must do is clear, ask any therapist.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Shodo said...
    “Pity and compassion are, to the sociopath, nothing but tools to abuse.

    If you want to pity him, and be compassionate to him - do it only for yourself, because a true sociopath will not be touched but such empathy... deep down they will think it's just another weakness on your part that they can run rough-shod over. “

    Anonymous said...
    Reposted from Robert Aitken's blog September 13, 2010 8:00 PM

    It is critical that the members of the current Board of Directors understand the methods of Mr. Shimano’s pathological lying. “Normal” people cannot even begin to imagine the complete lack of respect that he has for them, nor the consequences they will personally suffer if they act upon his lies.

    It is also critical that students of the organization should be aware that when speaking with Mr. Shimano they should always have witnesses, and that they should not share any personal information with him. Again, this is very difficult for “normal” people to grasp, especially when the Board pushes Mr. Shimano forth as their trusted teacher.

    This post from the Zen International Forum offers additional insight into the “Shimano problem”.

    Post by Seigen on Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:41 pm
    Here's the hard part for the bodhisattva:

    …It is not advisable to try to reform or cure psychopaths.
    The best advice is to learn to identify them and develop a strategy for cutting off the relationship. Although a relationship with a psychopath is painful, it is also an opportunity to enhance your spiritual growth and purify your own motives. Be patient with friends who are under the control of a psychopath, and be ready to help them when they express doubts. Awareness of the problem of psychopaths is half of the solution.”

    A number of years ago, in discussing the “Shimano problem” with a senior American Zen teacher who has known Mr. Shimano for decades, he described Mr. Shimano as “a psychopath who has surrounded himself with co-psychopaths”.

    I personally do not see anything wrong with [choosing one's own practice and if that is] the “co-psychopathic zen practice” it may be appropriate for his extreme supporters. But it is dangerous for the general public.

    Mr. Shimano should be moved into one of their zendos (Genjo, Roko, Junpo, Eshin, Zenshin, etc) so that the threat to the public is minimized.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Part 1
    Shodo said...
    “Pity and compassion are, to the sociopath, nothing but tools to abuse.

    If you want to pity him, and be compassionate to him - do it only for yourself, because a true sociopath will not be touched but such empathy... deep down they will think it's just another weakness on your part that they can run rough-shod over. “

    Anonymous said...
    Reposted from Robert Aitken's blog September 13, 2010 8:00 PM

    It is critical that the members of the current Board of Directors understand the methods of Mr. Shimano’s pathological lying. “Normal” people cannot even begin to imagine the complete lack of respect that he has for them, nor the consequences they will personally suffer if they act upon his lies.

    It is also critical that students of the organization should be aware that when speaking with Mr. Shimano they should always have witnesses, and that they should not share any personal information with him. Again, this is very difficult for “normal” people to grasp, especially when the Board pushes Mr. Shimano forth as their trusted teacher.

    This post from the Zen International Forum offers additional insight into the “Shimano problem”.

    Post by Seigen on Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:41 pm
    Here's the hard part for the bodhisattva:

    …It is not advisable to try to reform or cure psychopaths.
    The best advice is to learn to identify them and develop a strategy for cutting off the relationship. Although a relationship with a psychopath is painful, it is also an opportunity to enhance your spiritual growth and purify your own motives. Be patient with friends who are under the control of a psychopath, and be ready to help them when they express doubts. Awareness of the problem of psychopaths is half of the solution.”


    continues in Part 2

    ReplyDelete
  19. Part 2

    A number of years ago, in discussing he “Shimano problem” with a senior American Zen teacher who has known Mr. Shimano for decades, he described Mr. Shimano as “a psychopath who has surrounded himself with co-psychopaths”.

    I personally do not see anything wrong with [choosing one's own practice and if that is] the “co-psychopathic zen practice” it may be appropriate for his extreme supporters. But it is dangerous for the general public.

    Mr. Shimano should be moved into one of their zendos (Genjo, Roko, Junpo, Eshin, Zenshin, etc) so that the threat to the public is minimized.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Mr. Shimano should be moved into one of their zendos (Genjo, Roko, Junpo, Eshin, Zenshin, etc) so that the threat to the public is minimized.
    ___________________________________________

    Will someone explain to me how such a hypothesis differs from the Catholic Church's shunting of child-abusing priests from one parish to another? Everything's OK as long as the problem is not in my backyard? How does this "minimize the threat to the public?"

    ReplyDelete
  21. When I first met Eido Shimano I was very taken by what seemed a quality of tenderness combined with the strength and focus that comes with a disciplined practice like Zazen. His interest in me as a potential student (he actually came to my house after I had spent one weekend at DBZ) also seemed sincere. Because I had lost a former teacher who was actually completely hands off with students I expected him to be the same. Nevertheless I felt something not quite genuine or right. I went anyway, for a number of reasons - some good, some not.

    I soon learned that these "virtues" were not as they seemed. I watched this not just for myself but toward others over the longer haul regarding the role of Abbot.

    Additionally, as I better came to know him, I realized that he did not care about his students in a way that to me would reflect an enlightened or spiritual leader. By this I mean open and even low criticisms of students, wife, and Aericans in general. I never once had a sense from him that he had any real felt connection to the land around him. What was missing was a quality of deep compassion, a quality of shared connectedness, sometimes even just plain psychological and moral feeling, toward ALL sentient beings that seem to be the very fabric of spiritual awakening and a consequence of enlightenment. This just could not be explained away as "detachment" or other possible excuses for the "enlightened master".

    To this day Shimano does not represent for me an "enlightened" master of Zen or anything else. And, I'm not looking for perfect. Nevertheless the practice and discipline that he created at DBZ was very strong and very powerful and the result was equally powerful for many who stayed on their cushion over time. It had a beauty in itself and many people have expressed that with much gratitude. That in itself was worth the trip, but for some the price was big. As Genkaku says, zazen is no lier. It's a beautiful and powerful practice.

    There is just something that I hear and feel within a fuller range that comes with a deep connectedness to all life. I feel like I'm limping along here in trying to express it. Words are never adequate enough. It just wasn't there in the genuine manner that has depth and translates into practice on and beyond the cushion.

    This is my very humble observation but it's a true one and reflects what I found on those cushions and generally more from life itself. It's just a taste, and only enough to know what it's not. Not this - not that. I know that Shimano has reached states of opening and kensho, but maybe there's more to go before bestowing the word "enlightened".

    It was also a most riveting and even frightening experience to watch how Shimano played the people around him for his own advantage whenever there was a minor or major crisis that questioned his actions and the result of them.
    This is what I hear people being advised to not play into. It's not meant without care of Shimano. It's meant because it is what may have the only way of helping him. Huge amounts of energy over 40 years have been given to him and to pick up after the disasters. That energy needs to be released in connection to what gives life, not diminishes and confuses and destroys.

    "Enough is enough"

    ReplyDelete
  22. Perhaps this expresses what is so wrong here.

    "Zazen does not lie, but, zazen can be used to do so."

    An exit strategy is the runt puppy's mother.

    Mike

    ReplyDelete
  23. "Mr. Shimano should be moved into one of their zendos (Genjo, Roko, Junpo, Eshin, Zenshin, etc) so that the threat to the public is minimized."

    Ha! Not in our zendo!
    :)

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thanks, Olivia, beautifully stated. 10:26 AM

    I'm sure that your experience resonates with many former ZSS students, right from their wholesome appreciation of the practice at the beginning of their association with DBZ ... through their "riveting and even frightening experience to watch how Shimano played the people around him for his own advantage whenever there was a minor or major crisis that questioned his actions and the result of them."

    Great summary.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Yes, thank-you, Olivia.
    -EL

    ReplyDelete
  26. "Each student must be encouraged to take responsible measures to confront teachers with unethical aspects of their conduct. If the teacher shows no sign of reform, students should not hesitate to publicize any unethical behavior of which there is irrefutable evidence. This should be done irrespective of other beneficial aspects of his or her work and of one's spiritual commitment to that teacher."

    — His Holiness the Dalai Lama

    I'm trying to find more information about the meeting in India at which the Dali Lama made that statement. It was apparently in response to some members of ZSS who attended the meeting and spoke directly to the Dali Lama about Shimano.

    The DL told another story in that meeting which served to identify "crazy wisdom" as a state of enlightenment in the "unconditional realm" and how to test for it. Do any of you have a good and reliable accounting of that time?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Layman Suchandra said.

    "How much money went from ZSS and went to Hoen-ji or its abbot?"

    "Shinge Roshi travels widely..."

    http://www.zencenterofsyracuse.org/biographies/shinge-roshi-roko-sherry-chayat

    ReplyDelete
  28. Re: meeting with Dalai Lama

    On March 16-19, 1993, a meeting was held in Dharamsala, India, between His Holiness the fourteenth Dalai Lama and a group of twenty- two Western dharma teachers from the major Buddhist traditions in Europe and America

    http://www.anandainfo.com/buddhist_ethics.html

    ReplyDelete
  29. Someone asked "Why even sit Zazen?" In the beginning of understanding one's own mind and nature it is advisable to meditate. After one is capable of calming the mind and body one learns to walk in meditation and even converse with others keeping a calm and meditative mind and body. The teachers and people who continue to believe in formal meditation after they have received its' benefits are missing the mark. They now stunt the growth of the individual.... a story from T.D. Suzuki.....
    Huang asked "You say you come from Neng, the great master. What instruction did you have under him?"
    Yung answered: "According to his instruction, no-tranquillization, no-disturbance, no-sitting, no-meditation - this is the Tathagata's Dhyana. The five Skandhas are not realities, the six objects of sense are by nature empty. It is neither quiet nor illuminating; it is neither real nor empty; it does not abide in the middle way; it is not doing, it is no-effect-producing, and yet it functions with the utmost freedom: the Buddha-nature is all-inclusive."
    This said, Huang at once realized the meaning of it and sighed: "These thirty years I have sat' to no purpose!"

    ReplyDelete
  30. Nothing obviates the practice of compassion for all beings (if you are a Buddhist).

    --spike

    ReplyDelete
  31. "I know that Shimano has reached states of opening and kensho"

    Sorry, Olivia, but no. It's just not the case. There's a lot more fraud at work in Zen than most people know.

    People really shouldn't be so confused. It is as it appears. A real taste -- even a first real kensho -- only happens to the most sincere of men and women. Usually, they happen not to be the "masters". Most often, disturbed by what they come to see in the monastery, they leave.

    Sincerity and honesty is actually a requirement. Else, how might one truly face oneself? Without these, one does not even acknowledge one's own actions, even as one is doing them. I wish people would at least give this some thought.

    The big show, the slow, practiced speech, and the careful, controlled postures are an act. It's insincerity. Despite the pomp and splendor of "this great tradition", it just doesn't happen to these people. As a consequence, they are reduced to politics, powermongering, manipulation, constant public posturing, etc.

    It never appears like this.

    And the koans? They know answers. They studied them. They use them to maintain position by creating in people thoughts like "I know he had a real kensho".

    This is a terrible betrayal. It is part of what I meant when I wrote, before, that the insincere come to rule over the sincere, as most people would never wish to present such falsehood to others.

    If anyone is wondering why good, honest, well-adjusted people tend to leave places like DBZ, and why [well, opposite] types of people tend to stay, this is why. It's the sincere ones who may come to see through it. Shimano gets them out of there.

    If he had any idea of what he is actually doing -- to HIMSELF -- with the lies and manipulation, he wouldn't do it. That's part of what he would have seen. In that moment, he would have seen what it builds (in HIM), and the discomfort that it causes (HIM).

    He hasn't. Ever. He won't, either. Ever. It's not these people. It never was. There are no exceptions. There will never be any exceptions.

    People really shouldn't be confused by this.

    -J

    ReplyDelete
  32. Genkaku said...
    “Will someone explain to me how such a hypothesis differs from the Catholic Church's shunting of child-abusing priests from one parish to another? Everything's OK as long as the problem is not in my backyard? How does this "minimize the threat to the public?"

    Yes, yes of course you are right, I am the originial poster.

    I should have copy/pasted the entire September 13, 2010 8:00 PM post on Mr. Aitken's blog, but it exceeded the Blogstpot size limit when preceeded by the quote from Shodo.

    But yes, my original statement on the Aitken blog is weak: “Mr. Shimano should be moved into one of their zendos (Genjo, Roko, Junpo, Eshin, Zenshin, etc) so that the threat to the public is minimized. I should have at least said, so the threat to the Zen Studies Society is removed.”

    The point that I was trying to make in September is this: if Sherry Chyat, Joe Marinello, Richard Rudin, and Eshin Brenda Lukeman Shoshanna think that Mr. Shimano is so wonderful, they should take him to their zendos, instead of using their “leadership” to continue to inflict him on the ZSS.

    The fact is, Mr. Shimano belongs in prison, and if he lived in Minnesota that is exactly where he would be, with a $30,000 fine for 15 years. That's how the threat to the “public” is minimized, and boards of directors are empowered: LAWS.

    And it is also a fact that the Catholic Church has such a strong lobby in New York State (and Massachusetts), that when legislative bills come up before the NYState Legislture (and the Massachusetts Legislature) that invoke the criminalization of clergy sexual abuse, the bills do not get passed into law.

    It's all very nice that the Zen Buddhist teachers have finally been given permission to peak out of their own backyards and to write letters to the ZSS Board of Directors. Even if those letters are based on a template.

    But what about the non-Buddhist backyards? Protection for everyone: the “public”.

    A number of states have solved the problem: it is a criminal offense for a member of the clergy to engage in sexual intercourse with an active parishioner; the consent of the parishioner is not a defense.

    The message is clear: if you want to have sex, one party must leave the congregation while the relationship sorts itself out. No sneaking around and no excuses.

    In order to succeed with legislation, the “Shimano Problem” and the “Catholic Church Problem” are extremely useful in gaining the support of our State Senators and Congressmen.

    But for now, I must leave a discussion of a legislative initiative for another day.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Acknowledging and taking ownership of innate incompleteness is the first necessity of this Way, it is not a step which can be skipped.

    It can however, show up and seem to be just an afterthought. Be wary of both views.


    Words and behavior are not divisible.







    The words, Buddhist Zen master, when applied to someone who acts in an explicitly arrogant manner for a long period of time, an oxymoron before the words are even spoken.

    This applies to Dharma heirs, be they roshis, or seniors monks, or junior monks, or just students or, least of all, accessories to the fact.

    Taking ownership of innate incompleteness is the first necessity of this Way; it does not show up as an afterthought.

    ReplyDelete
  34. 2:38 is me.

    Having a sort of mini break out day. Doors opening etc. Some of the above was deleted, too hard to say here. Some moved around with no editing.

    Certainly understand now what El meant when she said this is a sangha amd the need to talk thourough to gain some clarity.

    Thanks to all recent comments. A revelation.

    Mike

    ReplyDelete
  35. About kensho, sincerity and honesty. I agree
    completely with Jushin.

    Gassho.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Is it ever ethical to break a marriage vow? Is there any male or female who can really claim not to know whether it is or not?

    ReplyDelete
  37. I don't think there's any male or female who has broken a marriage who DOESN'T know whether it was ethical or not.

    ReplyDelete
  38. A real kensho makes a monastery no more relevant or less relevant than any other place.

    ReplyDelete
  39. -J 1:43

    Thank you - am listening. My statement was to give him the benefit of the doubt!

    ReplyDelete
  40. It there has ever been anyone anywhere who has lost the right to the benefit of the doubt, through repeated manipulation and bad faith, it's Eido Tai Shimano.

    ReplyDelete
  41. That's for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  42. So...when is the next ZSS Board meeting, where they will adopt the new Bylaws and ban Mr. Shimano forever from the premises?

    ReplyDelete
  43. Great God on a hot hopping rock, let's hope so!

    ReplyDelete
  44. "Great God on a hot hopping rock, let's hope so!"

    :))) sometimes you just gotta love this crowd.

    ReplyDelete
  45. 3000! Woo-hoo!
    --EL

    ReplyDelete
  46. Re: 3000 Landmark Number of blog posts on a single subject

    Actually we passed 3,000 posts a little while ago. Remember a while back Genkaku tried doing some deletions and things got screwed things up for part of a day. :-}

    BTW --

    There are other notable (ignoble?) landmarks.

    There are now 168 signatures on the Petition

    Further, there are as of this writing 19 Open Letters from Zen Teachers asking the Board of Zen Studies Society to remove Shimano on James Ford's Blog

    ReplyDelete
  47. The BuddhaDharma blog has posted on piece on the open letters under Buddhist news:

    http://www.shambhalasun.com/news/?p=17733#more-17733

    ReplyDelete
  48. Here is an excerpt from a recent letter to the Zen Studies Society Board of Directors from Zoketsu Norman Fischer, Roshi:

    ...I think we in the West have been mistaken in imagining that in Asia teachers control their sanghas absolutely.  This is not the case.  Teacher misconduct is not tolerated anywhere in Asia, and the disciplining of teachers is not inconsistent with the necessary respect and obedience for the teacher that is essential for Zen practice.

    The reason teacher misconduct is not tolerated in Asia is no less true here: bad conduct that goes unaddressed weakens the entire Dharma community.  This is why so many letters from Zen teachers have been filling your mailbox: your problems are ours. 

    The days of American Zen lineages as closed family systems is over.  Zen practice cannot survive unless we realize that we are responsible to each other – and that we are here to support each other.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Sorry, I've reposted and edited due to a couple of typos and unnecessary information. Genkaku, if you can, please delete the prior post.

    Also, the Tricycle blog has a tiny post on the Open Letters:
    http://www.tricycle.com/blog/zen-teachers-respond-eido-shimano

    So far no one has posted a link to the Ford blog thread to the Open Letter thread on Ford's blog. I've tried registering three times but failed each time. :(

    ReplyDelete
  50. I found this little snippet from one of the public letters from Zen teachers about all this.

    At an American Zen Teachers Association (AZTA) meeting in 1995, I met a woman who told me she was practicing with Eido-roshi. She also explained that, some years earlier, she and her husband stopped practicing with Eido-roshi when they learned of his egregious sexual relations with his female students. She went on to say, “But I went back to complete my training.” I was surprised by how casually she admitted that she placed her personal ambitions above her ethical standards.


    Obviously, I'm spreading rumors. But I found it interesting that the teacher decided to include this. Must be about Roko.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Well, well ,well....

    http://www.shimanoarchive.com/PDFs/20110105_Kensei_account.pdf

    "One evening this past May, Shinge Roshi called the sangha together so that she could explain what was going on with Eido and stop the rumor train before it had a chance to get a full head of steam. She told us about the most recent incident with Eido Roshi and his student and told us that there had been other incidents in the past, but did not elaborate beyond that. She also told us that she and several other female residents of Dai Bosatsu Monastery, in 1975, were trading stories and discovered that they had all been sexually involved with Eido Roshi. Most of these women then abandoned him as a teacher and left the monastery."

    ReplyDelete
  52. This is the full account of my experience with this matter:

    One evening this past May, Shinge Roshi called the sangha together so that she could explain what was going on with Eido and stop the rumor train before it had a chance to get a full head of steam. She told us about the most recent incident with Eido Roshi and his student and told us that there had been other incidents in the past, but did not elaborate beyond that. She also told us that she and several other female residents of Dai Bosatsu Monastery, in 1975, were trading stories and discovered that they had all been sexually involved with Eido Roshi. Most of these women then abandoned him as a teacher and left the monastery.

    Shinge Roshi then asked the sangha to speak if they were so inclined. All of the people that spoke professed support for Eido, saying that their individual experiences with him during sesshin were enough for them to be sure that he was "the real deal." Many people also spoke of their unending support of Shinge Roshi. Shinge Roshi was in tears by this point, and told the attendees that she knew that Eido Roshi was her true teacher because, "He has the True Dharma Eye" and is a "fully awakened individual."

    I said nothing. I left that evening and did not return to sit with my Dharma brothers and sisters for five months. I was disturbed that someone could have the True Dharma Eye and do the things that he had done. In communications with fellow sangha members over the next few months, I questioned the validity of Transmission in these circumstances, the validity of my own Jukai... everything about Zen practice was shaken to the core. I became a heretic and was told by senior students and by the ordained that I should not question these things. There was even talk among senior students that his behavior with these women was a type of deep, mystical teaching that he was giving them that we were not yet able to fully understand.

    Only one other sangha member that I knew of at that time voiced opposition and left the sangha. Shinge Roshi told the sangha not to sit outside of our zendo with those that had left the sangha. I did go back to sit twice in late October and one of these occasions was for dokusan. I said that I had a small insight into Eido's motivations, having some personal experience in matters of this type. I was immediately reprimanded and told that I couldn't possibly know where Eido Roshi was coming from on this, as I had phrased it, because he has The True Dharma Eye and dwells in the absolute, so causality is different in his case. It may be true that I don't know where he was coming from, but The True Dharma Eye isn't a free pass to hurt people.

    I haven't returned since this dokusan experience. Having my teacher make excuses and justifications for his heinous behavior killed all enthusiasm for studying with Shinge Roshi.

    A close friend and Dharma sister was working in the Dai Bosatsu office over New Years and commented on the great volume of correspondences from the Zen community world-wide, and how moving it was to know that there was so much support for our sangha members. She was present when the most recent victim stood up during a meal and professed her love for Eido. She has told me that Eido is not giving up his fancy suite at the monastery, and that Shinge Roshi will be living in a regular monk's room when she is at Dai Bosatsu.

    The good in all of this is that I have learned that my practice is not location-dependent. My practice at home has become stronger than it ever has been. I know that finding another teacher is the right thing to do. Fear of what others will think of me and my actions, the fear of losing close Dharma friends, of becoming the heretic again is very strong, but not unbreakable. Right action is rarely easy action, but it must be done.

    With great respect,

    Kensei Jim Spencer

    ReplyDelete
  53. And here's my personal favorite, like an exhausted remark from a long suffering neighbor, the Rochester Zen Center.

    ...
    From Bodhin Kjolhede, Roshi

    Dear ZSS Board,

    Eido Roshi has besmirched the name of Zen long enough, and is now an open sore to the maha-Sangha. It's high time you exercise your authority and demand that he retire. Enough is enough.

    Bodhin Kjolhede

    ReplyDelete
  54. "... she and several other female students ... were trading stories and discovered they had all been sexually involved with eido ..."

    When I sent an email asing Roko directly about the rumor concerning her being involved sexually with Shimano, she, in a written statement relayed to me via email by Genjo, explicitly denied it.

    He did not contradict what she had written nor did he take any exception to it in a personal remark he addressed to me concerning how it was handled.

    This exchange occured sometime late last fall.

    ReplyDelete
  55. "Fear of what others will think of me and my actions, the fear of losing close Dharma friends, of becoming the heretic again is very strong, but not unbreakable. Right action is rarely easy action, but it must be done."

    Thank you Kensei,

    DaiAn

    ReplyDelete
  56. Enough of this CRAP. Off now to drink from another of Great Buddha's rivers. This rinzai trickle is foul; from bitter springs rises black and poisoned.

    ReplyDelete
  57. This is surreal. One month ago most of these AZTA folks were thought to be good company in a gang bang. Now they are quoted as the awakened.

    How corrupt is this American Zen? Pretty damned corrupt. These great people sat quiet on their cushions waiting for someone to tell them what to do. Now they resemble a hastily polite mob.

    Those who despised them for sitting so silently?
    The wind blows and all too easy is the way they swing.

    Dumber and dumber.

    ReplyDelete
  58. What the hell is Bodhin talking about?

    Eido Shimano did retire. He's just not going anywhere to do it.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Pack up his stuff Genjo. And hers. Call a truck. Put Fido Shimano and his lover Roko Chayat in it with all that stuff. Pay the driver extra to take them else where and close the road when the tail lights turn the bend.

    Oh yes, change the locks as well. Then resign from the board and go home.

    ReplyDelete
  60. January 5, 2011

    Shinge Roko Sherry Chayat
    Abbot
    Zen Center of Syracuse
    Syracuse, New York

    Dear Shinge Roshi:

    I am writing at last in response to an email I received from you a while back asking for the support of the Zen Center of Syracuse sangha as you take on an additional role as Abbot of Dai Bosatsu Zendo. As you can see, it has taken me a long while to gather my thoughts and find words to express them to you.

    Early last Spring I discovered the details of Eido Shimano’s long history of remorseless anti-social behavior, including the sexual exploitation of his female students over a period of several decades. I also learned that you and many of your colleagues had been aware of his conduct and dangerous propensities for many years. You nevertheless continued as his student and sent your students to study with him at Dai Bosatsu Zendo.

    Being a survivor myself, this information affected me profoundly. I wish that this information could have been in some way been shared with me when I joined ZCS and became your student, rather than having to be hit with it out of nowhere. My immediate reaction combined all of what one might expect from a survivor: Shock, anger, fear, shame and profound sadness. It made me ill. As an attorney who has spent almost thirty years serving abused and powerless people, my reaction was outrage.

    I sensed immediately that I could not continue to sit at ZCS. I wrote to you, the Board and some close sangha members with a vague description of what I was experiencing. I should have said more, but I could not find the words and was afraid of a reaction. My heavy family and professional responsibilities allowed me to believe that I had the right to just walk away without confronting these issues head-on. I did not want to become the center of unwelcome attention (again) by addressing the sangha directly, fearing that mine would be a lone voice crying out in the wilderness.

    I have spent many months investigating, studying, discussing, sitting and reflecting, asking the question: What is right action in this case? I also waited and watched to see what action you and the ZCS would take, but was disappointed not to hear your voice among the many who called for Eido Shimano’s removal. (If I am not aware of something, I do apologize.)



    Now I have learned that I was not the only student who had grave misgivings about Eido Shimano. I learned that these misgivings had been expressed before the sangha and with you in private. I now know that I should do something in solidarity with this student, and with all of those who have been harmed by Eido Shimano, by writing this letter and unequivocally telling you where I stand: I cannot support you while you continue as Eido Shimano’s student and make no public stand calling for his removal from all influence and presence at ZSS and its affiliates.

    I urge you to add your voice to those of your fellow AZTA teachers and the innumerable voices elsewhere in the Maha Sangha who have publicly called for this action.

    If you were to ask for my support in such an endeavor, I would give it freely.

    In any event, I remain grateful to you and the ZCS sangha for introducing me to zazen and our precepts, which have proven them immeasurably valuable.


    Let True Dharma Continue!


    DaiAn

    ReplyDelete
  61. Hi Kobutsu,
    Whoops, you seem to have picked up an inconsistency there in your naming conventions on the DaiAn_Shinge document. Umm...isn't that supposed to be DaiAn_Chyat ;))

    ...
    Thank goodness for the shimanoarchive.com. Somehow I don't think that DaiAn's letter would get posted on the Ford blog. Great letter.

    Nice work Kobutsu, the archive is looking faaaabulous.

    ReplyDelete
  62. For those interested, here is DaiAn's letter to Roko in full:

    January 5, 2011

    Shinge Roko Sherry Chayat
    Abbot
    Zen Center of Syracuse
    Syracuse, New York

    Dear Shinge Roshi:

    I am writing at last in response to an email I received from you a while back asking for the support of the Zen Center of Syracuse sangha as you take on an additional role as Abbot of Dai Bosatsu Zendo. As you can see, it has taken me a long while to gather my thoughts and find words to express them to you.

    Early last Spring I discovered the details of Eido Shimano’s long history of remorseless anti-social behavior, including the sexual exploitation of his female students over a period of several decades. I also learned that you and many of your colleagues had been aware of his conduct and dangerous propensities for many years. You nevertheless continued as his student and sent your students to study with him at Dai Bosatsu Zendo.

    Being a survivor myself, this information affected me profoundly. I wish that this information could have been in some way been shared with me when I joined ZCS and became your student, rather than having to be hit with it out of nowhere. My immediate reaction combined all of what one might expect from a survivor: Shock, anger, fear, shame and profound sadness. It made me ill. As an attorney who has spent almost thirty years serving abused and powerless people, my reaction was outrage.

    I sensed immediately that I could not continue to sit at ZCS. I wrote to you, the Board and some close sangha members with a vague description of what I was experiencing. I should have said more, but I could not find the words and was afraid of a reaction. My heavy family and professional responsibilities allowed me to believe that I had the right to just walk away without confronting these issues head-on. I did not want to become the center of unwelcome attention (again) by addressing the sangha directly, fearing that mine would be a lone voice crying out in the wilderness.

    I have spent many months investigating, studying, discussing, sitting and reflecting, asking the question: What is right action in this case? I also waited and watched to see what action you and the ZCS would take, but was disappointed not to hear your voice among the many who called for Eido Shimano’s removal. (If I am not aware of something, I do apologize.)



    Now I have learned that I was not the only student who had grave misgivings about Eido Shimano. I learned that these misgivings had been expressed before the sangha and with you in private. I now know that I should do something in solidarity with this student, and with all of those who have been harmed by Eido Shimano, by writing this letter and unequivocally telling you where I stand: I cannot support you while you continue as Eido Shimano’s student and make no public stand calling for his removal from all influence and presence at ZSS and its affiliates.

    I urge you to add your voice to those of your fellow AZTA teachers and the innumerable voices elsewhere in the Maha Sangha who have publicly called for this action.

    If you were to ask for my support in such an endeavor, I would give it freely.

    In any event, I remain grateful to you and the ZCS sangha for introducing me to zazen and our precepts, which have proven them immeasurably valuable.


    Let True Dharma Continue!


    DaiAn

    ReplyDelete
  63. P.S. DaiAn sent a very similar letter to the Syracuse board of directors.

    ReplyDelete
  64. "This is surreal. One month ago most of these AZTA folks were thought to be good company in a gang bang. Now they are quoted as the awakened."

    There is indeed a lot to get upset about in many of those letters, both in what they say and what they still don't say. Never mind about when they were finally written. But like genkaku wrote earlier, picking them critically apart is probably not worth the price of admission.

    The two letters from the students in Syracuse, on the other hand, are wonderful. Real and personal and presumably much more difficult to write than any of the AZTA form letters - not to mention that they finally confirm what everyone had been assuming anyway. Thank you both!

    ReplyDelete
  65. Shimano never gotten Zen. He was just one of many Unsui's in japan.
    So don't make an argument based on "Shimano = zen."
    What he has brought is his own disguised as Rinzai Zen.

    ReplyDelete
  66. "The two letters from the students in Syracuse, on the other hand, are wonderful. Real and personal and presumably much more difficult to write than any of the AZTA form letters - not to mention that they finally confirm what everyone had been assuming anyway. Thank you both!"


    And thanks to you, too, Christopher. Your voice and ALL of the others on this blog and the Shimano Archive gave me the courage to write.

    I was worried that I would wake up to cherry bombs this morning. Instead I received a wonderfully supportive call from another ZCS student...Although cherry bombs might still be on the way, too! :)

    DaiAn

    ReplyDelete
  67. "Thank you both!"

    Yes. The attempt to silence isolate and cover up was/is real. Nothing in these AZTA letters is all that helpful either.

    IF only the devoted accolytes and a few choice lovers are left with ES the attempt to remove ES with a flood of, "I'm shocked to discover and wish to add my voice ..", letters will not succeed. Read those letters carefully. Only the fanatics are left, the truly important one is "in bed" with ES.

    Resign from the board Genjo. The good fight has been fought.

    ReplyDelete
  68. "Nothing obviates the practice of compassion for all beings (if you are a Buddhist).

    --spike


    In the words of Zenki Mary Mocine, Roshi: Bodhisattvas are not saps, in my view. Sometimes they must set boundaries and make difficult decisions that hurt people. I think this is such a situation.

    ReplyDelete
  69. "Nothing in these AZTA letters is all that helpful either." Anonymous, 9:57 a.m.
    In fact, many of the so-called teachers continue to support Chyat! She should never have been installed as abbess. How was she “installed,” anyway? At a ceremony presided over by the same disgraced fraud for whose ouster all the “teachers” are now finally howling???

    Much gratitude to the two students of Chyat (DaiAn & Kensei) – whose recent letters leave no doubt as to Chyat’s integrity and spiritual stature (or lack thereof!)

    Much gratitude as well for this and similar blogs, and for the “Eido Roku” archive -- without which the hypocrisy and moral putrefaction at ZSS would still be continuing hidden from public scrutiny…

    ReplyDelete
  70. The portrait of Chayat operating in Syracuse is unsettling to say the least.

    How is asking her to join her publically in the call for ES to be removed going to change the modus operendi at DBZ, given the individual we see here in operation?

    If she does so how can it possibly be taken as anything but expediency on her part?

    ReplyDelete
  71. "How is asking her to join her publically in the call for ES to be removed going to change the modus operendi at DBZ, given the individual we see here in operation?

    If she does so how can it possibly be taken as anything but expediency on her part?"

    I agree. Look back at EL's suggestions on December 30, 31 and January 1 for a possible way way out of this.

    ReplyDelete
  72. Sorry, that is EL on December 29 at 2:23 for a possilbe solution (improbable as it may be). Others have posted similar suggestions.
    Then, if Ms. Chayat and the ZSS do not follow such a course, they will be left to struggle with what's left, hopefully with less students wandering in unaware, thanks to us.

    ReplyDelete
  73. "Shodo said...
    "Nothing obviates the practice of compassion for all beings (if you are a Buddhist).

    --spike

    In the words of Zenki Mary Mocine, Roshi: Bodhisattvas are not saps, in my view. Sometimes they must set boundaries and make difficult decisions that hurt people. I think this is such a situation."

    Nothing contradictory here. Spike agrees with MM, noting that the 'hurt' is compassionate.

    ReplyDelete
  74. "Although cherry bombs might still be on the way."

    Dont worry. We have this fellow David Scates who charges forwith to help cope with such meatballs and roughnecks. Pow! Bang! #@+#@! KERsplash!!

    ReplyDelete
  75. DaiAn,

    Thank you for your letter. I'm sorry for whatever happened to you ("survivor" - but not of Shimano), but am very moved by the good work you've been doing for others. Even without that mention, your letter will speak to many students who are struggling to know how to respond.

    About "cherry bombs", they usually have specific motifs - something like sub-themes in a grand opera. I'm happy that you are getting support here and hope that you can find a strong and caring place to continue your practice.

    ReplyDelete
  76. "Although cherry bombs might still be on the way."

    "Dont worry. We have this fellow David Scates who charges forwith to help cope with such meatballs and roughnecks. Pow! Bang! #@+#@! KERsplash!!"

    Sweet :)

    ReplyDelete
  77. DaiAn,

    ps - Nellalou (Marnie Froberg) who has posted here wrote an excellent paper on "motifs"(cherry bombs). Although she wouldn't except the award for it as best post of the year from Bloggisattva, enough people felt that it merited an award.

    "Sex and the Sangha:Forgiveness, Retribution or Justice"

    http://enlightenmentward.wordpress.com/2010/06/02/sex-and-the-sanghaforgiveness-retribution-or-justice/

    ReplyDelete
  78. Thank you for everything, Olivia.

    DaiAn

    ReplyDelete
  79. ""Nothing in these AZTA letters is all that helpful either." Anonymous, 9:57 a.m.
    In fact, many of the so-called teachers continue to support Chyat! She should never have been installed as abbess."

    --I believe the letters of support from AZTA teachers have been helpful, especially to the ZSS Sangha, who may have felt disenfranchised or not powerful enough to make a difference.

    But I believe that probabaly what has really turned the tide is the Shimano-to-NYT letter.

    I am hopeful now that more of the ZSS Board must 'get it'.

    --Spike

    ReplyDelete
  80. Response to the suggestions to rehabilitate ZSS offered on Dec 29th by El.

    1. Many ZSS Board members won't do this even now.
    2. Too late when suggested.
    3. Bylaw work was then suspended until after the finish of present abbess installation. Possibly it is still so due to ChoBO ji rohatsu.
    4. Members will pay dues and participate in the work of the temple no matter when bylaws are made public is most likely outcome.

    5. Come on. Present board cannot agree to cut ZSS ties to Shimano even now. How possible is it they will cut their own ties? Slim to none.
    6. See #5

    ReplyDelete
  81. “But I believe that probabaly what has really turned the tide is the Shimano-to-NYT letter. I am hopeful now that more of the ZSS Board must 'get it'. --Spike , 5:18 PM”

    Yes, it’s definitely the letter to the NYT that has turned the tide. The tide, however, is not going far enough.
    This whole affair ceased being about Shimano a long time ago. It is the ZSS Board that has proved to be utterly ineffectual. Two of Shimano’s heirs are on this paralyzed Board, tethered to their teacher, oblivious to the well-being of the sangha and of the organization. A lot of the AZTA members continue to praise them and express support for them.
    This Board should long have been working on its own demise – paving the way for a new, transparently and inclusively constituted body on the basis of new bylaws, to save the viability of the institution. It should have been left for the newly constituted Board to search for, identify and appoint a new abbot – taking however long that might have taken.
    Chayat has had little credibility all along, and with the January 5 letters of her two students, she has none left whatsoever.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Given this new material, I agree, she's entirely compromised, abbess or not abbess.

    If her living quarters as abbess of DBZ are truly as described in the letter .... ...

    Could it possibly get any worse? Yet, driving past a wrecked car in the ditch, who would not stop?

    ReplyDelete
  83. Should read:

    Yes, driving past a wrecked car in the ditch who would not stop?

    ReplyDelete
  84. "Chayat has had little credibility all along, and with the January 5 letters of her two students, she has none left whatsoever."

    --Ms. Chayat may choose to answer such accusations. I don't know if she will or not. How is it that so many others would have a different point of view after her presentation?

    "Given this new material, I agree, she's entirely compromised, abbess or not abbess."

    --If Ms. Chayat had sex with Mr. Shimano, might she then be considered a de facto victim of sex abuse, as FTI and others would say? If that is the case, is she then automatically too 'crippled' to be abbess (without a chance to prove her capability)? Or just the opposite: is it a triumph for a victim of sexual abuse to thus directly supplant her abuser? How might other victims view such a development? (Note that prior heirs were scheduled to take over from Mr. Shimano, but never did.)

    --Spike

    ReplyDelete
  85. "Anonymous said...
    Response to the suggestions to rehabilitate ZSS offered on Dec 29th by El.

    1. Many ZSS Board members won't do this even now.
    2. Too late when suggested.
    3. Bylaw work was then suspended until after the finish of present abbess installation. Possibly it is still so due to ChoBO ji rohatsu.
    4. Members will pay dues and participate in the work of the temple no matter when bylaws are made public is most likely outcome.

    5. Come on. Present board cannot agree to cut ZSS ties to Shimano even now. How possible is it they will cut their own ties? Slim to none.
    6. See #5 "

    Alas,you are probably right. Only if the stars had aligned themselves instantly and perfectly was there even a theoretical chance. Well, maybe someone can get their compass and sliderule out and suggest something else? -EL

    ReplyDelete
  86. Anonymous said...
    "Shimano never gotten Zen. He was just one of many Unsui's in japan.
    So don't make an argument based on "Shimano = zen."
    What he has brought is his own disguised as Rinzai Zen. "

    Thank you, I do believe you are correct, and I will not abandon my zen practice based upon Shimano.

    Gassho

    ReplyDelete
  87. Actually, the "zen practice based upon Shimano" should be dropped yesterday at the latest, but I presume that is not what you meant.

    ReplyDelete
  88. You are quite correct, Sir (or a madam)!

    ReplyDelete
  89. "What he has brought is his own disguised as Rinzai Zen. "

    The shimano-dharma is a poisoned dharma.
    The shimano-dharma is a poisoned dharma.
    The shimano-dharma is a poisoned dharma.

    ReplyDelete
  90. Namo Amida Butsu
    Namo Amida Butsu
    Namo Amida Butsu

    ReplyDelete
  91. I posted the most recent letter of Jiro Afable on the Zen Forum International site... this is what I said/asked:

    "The latest entry to the Shimano Archive... From Andy Jiro Afable.

    http://www.shimanoarchive.com/PDFs/2011 ... Malone.pdf

    So, are the allegations that Jiro Afable alludes to true?

    ... this is getting worse and worse."


    And this is what Nonin responded with:

    "No, they are not, at least not all of them that I know about, and the situation at ZSS is not getting worse but better. Roko Chayat (Shinge-roshi) did not have an affair with Eido Shimano. She has denied this in the past many times. I know her well, and I believe her. Also, the statements that a former student at Hoen-ji made are mis-representations of what Roko said. Again, Roko is one of my sources for this, as is another of her students. In the simplest circumstances a group of people will not recall events in same way, often differing significantly on key points. In emotionally charged situations it is even more complicated and confusing.

    Please be aware that the Shimano archives will only list messages and letters that attack Eido Shimano, Roko, and the ZSS Board. Many of those missives are either incorrect or misrepresentations based on the writers' personal bias, so the Shimano archives are not a reliable source of information. They spread much hearsay, unfounded allegations, and untruths mixed in with whatever accurate information may appear there. Don't believe everything you read on the Shimano archives.

    I am close to a couple of ZSS Board members and they tell me they can't believe the inaccuracies and mis-information that are being spread around. The Board is working through a resolution of the issues confronting them and intends to release a statement about them and a course of action for the future soon. When, I don't know.

    Also, I can't think of anyone, except perhaps Eido Shimano, who doesn't think that he needs to fully retire and not have any further role at ZSS. Besmirching the name of his successors, the ZSS Board, and others trying to set the organization on the proper course benefits no one.

    Hands palm-to-palm,

    Nonin"

    ReplyDelete
  92. Namo Amida Butsu
    Namo Amida Butsu
    Namo Amida Butsu

    ReplyDelete
  93. "I am hopeful now that more of the ZSS Board must 'get it' ".

    --Spike

    My Dear Spike,
    For those dear innocents who have come to depend upon ZSS' survival, may it be so.

    Dai An

    ReplyDelete
  94. I received notification of the following comment at 9;30 p.m. by Shodo, but I am not seeing it here and so have cut and pasted it:
    ____________________________________

    I posted the most recent letter of Jiro Afable on the Zen Forum International site... this is what I said/asked:

    "The latest entry to the Shimano Archive... From Andy Jiro Afable.

    http://www.shimanoarchive.com/PDFs/2011 ... Malone.pdf

    So, are the allegations that Jiro Afable alludes to true?

    ... this is getting worse and worse."

    And this is what Nonin responded with:

    "No, they are not, at least not all of them that I know about, and the situation at ZSS is not getting worse but better. Roko Chayat (Shinge-roshi) did not have an affair with Eido Shimano. She has denied this in the past many times. I know her well, and I believe her. Also, the statements that a former student at Hoen-ji made are mis-representations of what Roko said. Again, Roko is one of my sources for this, as is another of her students. In the simplest circumstances a group of people will not recall events in same way, often differing significantly on key points. In emotionally charged situations it is even more complicated and confusing.

    Please be aware that the Shimano archives will only list messages and letters that attack Eido Shimano, Roko, and the ZSS Board. Many of those missives are either incorrect or misrepresentations based on the writers' personal bias, so the Shimano archives are not a reliable source of information. They spread much hearsay, unfounded allegations, and untruths mixed in with whatever accurate information may appear there. Don't believe everything you read on the Shimano archives.

    I am close to a couple of ZSS Board members and they tell me they can't believe the inaccuracies and mis-information that are being spread around. The Board is working through a resolution of the issues confronting them and intends to release a statement about them and a course of action for the future soon. When, I don't know.

    Also, I can't think of anyone, except perhaps Eido Shimano, who doesn't think that he needs to fully retire and not have any further role at ZSS. Besmirching the name of his successors, the ZSS Board, and others trying to set the organization on the proper course benefits no one.

    Hands palm-to-palm,

    Nonin"

    ReplyDelete
  95. I tried posting it about 45 min ago genkaku... it was there for 5 minutes but when i refreshed it was gone - thank you for reposting it...

    Me and Nonin seem to butt heads quite often... he seems to the the "Peace shall be violently enforced" sort of person...:)

    ReplyDelete
  96. by Nonin on Sat May 22, 2010 10:53 pm

    I don't know if it's clear to all of us or not that the allegations about Eido Shimano are more than fifteen years old and that many of Eido's students, current and past, say that there have been no new allegations since, so it seems as if he changed his behavior. Part of the reasons for this may have been the work behind the scenes by members of the American Zen Teachers Association, but I can't be sure. I didn't become active with the group until just after this issue was addressed.

    One priest who's been working with Eido for the past fifteen years tells me that he's not seen nor heard of any sexual misconduct for those fifteen years.

    We all have karmic baggage that we are working out. It seems that Eido Shimano has been working on his, as I have been working on mine. His past behavior is not excusable in my view, and no one that I know of is currently denying it, although Eido and some sangha members did deny it when it first occurred many years ago. However, all of us can and sometimes do change. Eido's past behavior has created many adverse karmic consequences for him and for his sangha, and he and they are living the consequences right into the present day.

    Also, one of Eido's long-term students regards the latest round of postings on the internet as nothing more than "sanctimonious vilification." Most of it has been circulated by Stuart Lachs, who was a long-term student of a teacher whose sangha exploded as the result of the teacher's sexual misconduct. Stuart has put a great deal of effort over the past years in trying to discredit not only specific Zen teachers but also the dharma transmission process itself. I don't even bother to read what Stuart writes anymore because he has too many personal axes to grind. Another person behind the recent internet postings has had a running feud with Eido and his sangha for many years over a variety of issues. I know the person, and I wouldn't trust what he says on this issue.

    I have no idea why Robert Aitken is bringing this issue up again at this time. As I said earlier, the events described in the letters that have been released and posted on the internet and the subsequent postings discussing them describe events that are over fifteen years old.

    Another of Eido's long term students writes: It makes more sense "to look at our present generation's teacher-student relationships with a keen eye rather than reaching into the past to point accusatory fingers at our Asian teachers." I wholeheartedly agree, and I would add that it would also serve us all well to point those fingers at ourselves and take a good look at our behavior in all areas, not only sexual misconduct but also pointing fingers at and judging others.

    Hands palm-to-palm,

    Nonin

    ReplyDelete
  97. I wouldn't "believe" (he likes to "believe") anything that issues forth from the Prairie Wind-bag's mouth (or other orifice). He sure spends a lot of time on line for an "Abbot."

    ReplyDelete
  98. Spike. Read the first letter again. The letter reports, " ... she and several others were TRADING stories and they discovered that ALL OF THEM had intercourse with him." She does not exclude herself.

    Of course, authenticity of any report will always be a fair question but neither of those letters strike me as fabrications.

    The other suggestion asks, might Sherry Chayat now be considered a de facto victim?

    She is a Dharma heir; she is the DBZ abbess;she does pressure others to remain silent when they attempt to voice concerns about that man; and she does not say anything at all in public.

    Not even a "survivor's triumph" changes the point being made and remade amd remade again.

    ReplyDelete
  99. Anonymous said...

    Spike. Read the first letter again. The letter reports, " ... she and several others were TRADING stories and they discovered that ALL OF THEM had intercourse with him." She does not exclude herself.

    Not true. I was at the May meeting referred to by Kensei. Shinge Roshi said no such thing.

    ReplyDelete
  100. Nonin is clearly experiencing denial and why not? To confront Eido Shimano's emptiness would be to confront his own.

    Where is there discrimination or courage in the behavior of these now speaking teachers with their empty words? They are shown to be pack first and so now they rise to defend their own.

    WIth distorted calls to action and evasions of their complete responsibility for leading the way of harm.

    These are the ones of skillful means?

    What a waste.

    ReplyDelete
  101. "The board is working through A RESOLUTION OF the issues confronting them ..."

    Wow, A RESOUTION OF. Good news!

    Then, Nonin, buddy, best they get their asses in gear, as it looks like they are being swamped by their deliberate pace.

    ReplyDelete
  102. Spike, the kittens talking about sexual romps with Fido were talking in 1975. Early perhaps but it's still sex, so it counts.

    She denies this happened. SO, the letter is a lie. The work of Enemies, out to get her.

    Haul them all into court and ask the questions under oath.

    ReplyDelete
  103. Gee, it looks like we need another petition.

    ************** PETITION *************

    Sherry Chyat is having trouble remembering if she had sex with Eido Shimano.

    Please sign below if she ever told you:
    1._____________
    2._____________
    3._____________

    ReplyDelete
  104. While Sherry Chyat might have some excuse for tying herself to the mast of a sinking ship (Stockholm Syndrome, sexual obsession, political desperation), Nonin Shonin seems to be an out-and-out volunteer. What a blessing to the American Sangha if this particular rat runs aboard before the final sinking.

    ReplyDelete
  105. Now if we could only get the AZTA to hold their next get-together on the same boat, Zen might get a clear shot at taking root in America.

    ReplyDelete
  106. Nonin states, "I can't think of anyone,...., who doesn't think he needs to fully retire ..... not have any further role at ZSS."

    Why, if this is the case, was it deemed appropo to solicit letters of support addressed to the ZSS Board clearly advocating for a clean break?

    Nonin does not say the letter is a lie. He offers a very reasonable seed of doubt concerning the letter writer's ability of recall under high emotional stress. What he implies is possible; it is also possible such conditions sear what happens into the memory in a way it cannot be erased confused or forgotten.

    He does not state the same is true of S.Chayat; subjected to conditions of high emotional stress her recall of events is equally in doubt and equally enabled.


    He states Shimano Archives contains incomplete and inaccurate information. As does Wikipedia. As does ZSS website.

    ReplyDelete
  107. Eido Shimano is not a dead rock nor is he an open sore. He is a cancer left loose in the maha sangha, destroying too much for too long.

    Wake up! Wake up! He metastasizes poison. Cut.

    ReplyDelete
  108. Mr. Nonin has a high estimation of himself. In that same thread, on Jan 2nd he states:

    My name is Nonin, not "Dude."

    Have you read my previous posts on this issue? You are repeating falsehoods, mis-representing the actions of Zen teachers, and trying to re-write history to fit your negative attitudes towards those in positions of spiritual authority.


    It's easy to see why folks poke fun at this poor man, so stuck in his own manufactured identity as a "spiritual authority," "transmitted dharma heir," "abbot" and so on... It's sad how so many people regard him as being his self proclaimed "identity" when he is apparently quite deluded.

    ReplyDelete
  109. The poor man, indeed. If the little rat didn't have such active teeth, constantly gnawing away at reputations and trust, or if he weren't so suspect for biting babies at night, I might feel sorry for him, too.

    ReplyDelete
  110. Dear Nonin,'
    Having carefully looked at my behavior at pointing a finger (guess which one) AT YOU and judging YOU, I find that the behavior is utterly justified in MY view.
    love,
    a spiritual non-authority

    ReplyDelete
  111. Large banks, Walmart, protected ego's, Zen institutions (currupt and worthless teachers and rituals)......the signs of our times....They are too big to fail!

    ReplyDelete
  112. Nonin: Thanks for clearing up that Shinge Roshi, by her own words, has already denied the sexual allegations against her. Thanks also to to anonymous January 6, 2011 11:43 PM, for the eyewitness account of the DBZ women's meeting that also clears this up.

    --Spike

    ReplyDelete
  113. Spike -- Since when are anonymous statements given more credence than identified ones? And exactly what would be "cleared up" by two contradictory statements?

    ReplyDelete
  114. "Spike -- Since when are anonymous statements given more credence than identified ones? And exactly what would be "cleared up" by two contradictory statements?"

    In a Cult, the leader's statement ends all.

    ReplyDelete
  115. ZSS = exquisite real estate + {[(zero critical thinking + zero incisive analysis + 100 % befuddlement + zero intellectual independence = intellectual torpour) + zero ethical grounding] = moral bankruptcy} = CULT x SHAME = besmirchment of Zen and Buddhism

    ReplyDelete
  116. Interesting discussion re: the myth of the "Zen Master" at Monkeymind:


    "Sociologically Zen communities in the West are mostly cults. That is a single figure sits at the center and is the center. This grows out of the myth (in both good and ill uses) of the Zen master and the importance of an authorized Zen teacher for the community to exist or continue to a new generation."

    http://monkeymindonline.blogspot.com/search?q=shimano

    ReplyDelete
  117. "ZSS = exquisite real estate + {[(zero critical thinking + zero incisive analysis + 100 % befuddlement + zero intellectual independence = intellectual torpour) + zero ethical grounding] = moral bankruptcy} = CULT x SHAME = besmirchment of Zen and Buddhism"

    I would alter your equation just slightly --

    = Besmirchment of Zen and Buddhism
    to the Nth Power

    ReplyDelete
  118. What are you expecting from a person even if he is called a zen master? Unrealistic expectation creates opportunity to be taken advantage of, disappointment and anger like you guys are venting.

    ReplyDelete
  119. Missive from a friend regarding AZTA letters:

    “About time... But where were they all this time? Have you noticed how they still rally around the two Shimano heirs, as though Shimano were an independent operator? And how most of them address their letter to Soun, as though the poor "President" could take action independently of the two heirs, especially of the new Abbess whom the AZTA folks are all busy congratulating? And did you notice the flood of letters started coming when the poor Abbess-to-be (damsel in anguish) pathetically turned to her AZTA friends for help on the surfacing of the letter to the NYT -- the same friends whom she and her fellow heir/board member had been muzzling for months???
    The whole picture defies comprehension and belief..."

    ReplyDelete
  120. "What are you expecting from a person even if he is called a zen master? Unrealistic expectation creates opportunity to be taken advantage of, disappointment and anger like you guys are venting."

    What was unrealistic expectation is at issue here?

    ReplyDelete
  121. And I don't think much of the "venting" comes from disappointment. I think most of it comes from people who expected that, regardless of their hopes in practice, that the teacher (ETS) would not FUCK THEM OVER AND LIE TO THEM.

    ReplyDelete
  122. "What are you expecting from a person even if he is called a zen master? Unrealistic expectation creates opportunity to be taken advantage of, disappointment and anger like you guys are venting."

    Do you think that expecting one who calls himself or herself a Zen Master to value the precepts, and to feel and exhibit true remorse when the violation of a precept has harmed another person is unrealistic?

    Are you able to see a discussion like this, that calls into question the actions of a "Zen Master" as something other than venting?

    This discussion is helpful to encourage one's own critical thinking when choosing a spiritual path, rather than relying soley on what a master or his or her students might say.

    ReplyDelete
  123. "And I don't think much of the "venting" comes from disappointment. I think most of it comes from people who expected that, regardless of their hopes in practice, that the teacher (ETS) would not FUCK THEM OVER AND LIE TO THEM."

    Testify!

    ReplyDelete
  124. "What are you expecting from a person even if he is called a zen master? Unrealistic expectation creates opportunity to be taken advantage of, disappointment and anger like you guys are venting."

    Please, Anonymous at 11:30, answer the question - what unrealistic expectation are you talking about?

    ReplyDelete
  125. @January 7, 2011 11:11 AM An Accurate Mathematical Representation

    ReplyDelete
  126. ****Anonymous said...
    Spike -- Since when are anonymous statements given more credence than identified ones? And exactly what would be "cleared up" by two contradictory statements?

    January 7, 2011 10:26 AM
    Anonymous said...
    "Spike -- Since when are anonymous statements given more credence than identified ones? And exactly what would be "cleared up" by two contradictory statements?"***

    "Anonymous said ..."

    --Well, that just about says it.

    --Spike

    P.S. Did you really expect a victim to identify herself, especially when she might be subject to defamation and doubt by people like you?

    ReplyDelete
  127. FIVE POINTS TO LIVE HAPPILY

    1. Know that after all, life is simple. Do not complicate it.
    2. Be generous in your thoughts, deeds and things.
    3. Remember that things go according to your karma- whether you like it or not.
    4. Humbly obey the law of the Universe (TAO)
    5. Be positive under any circumstances.

    --These cinco puntos are by the ersatz Maestro Eido Shimano. Printed on a small
    card and freely distributed in DBZ, circa 2000.

    ReplyDelete
  128. I am totally lost. You mean, the "victim" who said Roko didn't say she was shagging Shimano (whom I would think had little to fear from the Shimano crowd for that statement)? Or the "victim" who said Roko did say she was shagging Shimano (who did identify herself, if not publicly)? Or all victims? Does that include Roko, in your mind? And the questions was, what is "cleared up", and how? And why don't you check around before you start spouting "people like you"?

    ReplyDelete
  129. Anonymous January 7, 2011 11:25 AM said...
    "What are you expecting from a person even if he is called a zen master? Unrealistic expectation creates opportunity to be taken advantage of, disappointment and anger like you guys are venting."

    I completely agree with the others that there are no unrealistic expectation at work here.

    ReplyDelete
  130. Anonymous January 7, 2011 11:28 AM said...
    Missive from a friend regarding AZTA letters:

    “And did you notice the flood of letters started coming when the poor Abbess-to-be (damsel in anguish) pathetically turned to her AZTA friends for help on the surfacing of the letter to the NYT -- the same friends whom she and her fellow heir/board member had been muzzling for months???

    Is there any truth to this statement or did you just pull it out of the air? My guess was that it was Genjo's Tricycle write up about the letter Shimano supposedly sent in the the NYT but was never published, and, perhaps, some more direct requests on his part. Why do you think that it was (mainly) Roko who requested help? Why would she ask for help to do something that every other indication is that she isn't going to do -- remove Shimano?


    "The whole picture defies comprehension and belief..."

    Now that's an understatement.

    ReplyDelete
  131. Spike,
    I'm sorry - I'm not following you. I did not understand that a victim or survivor was asserting something in this recent conversation.Can you explain that some more?

    I think that someone can feel free to assert something here anonymously, for any reason.

    I would just like to affirm the point being made -- that the anonymous statement of one person can't be seen as "clearing up" an issue put into question by one asserting it by name. How do you see it?

    And if one comes onto this blog, one needs to understand that it is a place for discussion and questioning - for scrunity. If one cannot bear to be questioned and scruntized, this is not the place for that person.

    But let me invite anyone who is afraid of tough scrutiny to stay on and try it a while. It has helped me to question my assumptions, to think more before I speak, to choose my words carefully (usually), to learn to have a good conversation with people I usually do not agree with.

    With deep bows,

    EL

    ReplyDelete
  132. As a peripheral point of interest, it crosses my mind that the use of the words "realistic" and "unrealistic" seems to imply two different things and yet is inextricably linked, each to the other.

    If, in this particular discussion, students are upbraided for having "unrealistic" expectations of teacher or teaching, then the one proposing that such students are "unrealistic" imply that they have a handle on what IS realistic. And if anyone is willing (as is seldom the case) to describe what a realistic expectation might be, there will invariably be a hundred suggestions about why that point of view is terribly unrealistic.

    So, for example, the realist might posit that it's up to the student to beware: Caveat emptor ... think it through... employ your skepticism. And it all sounds very grown-up. It's not the teacher's responsibility to be responsible ... or is it? And if it is, in what measure and by what means can s/he reasonably be expected to exercise that responsibility?

    I haven't got a punch line for this bit of noodling. Just thinking how freely anyone might use the words "realistic" or "unrealistic." They may indeed have some meaning or force, but as soon as anyone tries to get specific, it turns into an exercise of nailing Jell-O to a wall.

    As I say, I haven't really thought it through ... just munching a little.

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  133. I suppose Mr. 11:30 might have been referring to the common "unrealistic" suppositions about "Zen Masters" at large, i.e., that they have some sort of cosmic insight into reality that lets them break all the rules, and somehow act like complete criminal assholes without it being a bad thing. Americans have been all too prone to this fantasy, and all too loathe to give it up, as we've certainly seen with ETS and his brain-washed minions. I always figured that was because they couldn't wait to be in the same position themselves someday.

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  134. Cursed and black when
    first was heard Shimano spoken, named.

    Now a brightly poisoned darkness.
    Now metastasizing shame.

    Please, turn aside no longer.
    Turn from night to day.

    ReplyDelete
  135. Good work Spike! Not a geezer today.

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  136. I too was at the meeting at Hoen-ji that Kensei refers to and do not recall Shinge Roshi admitting to an affair with Eido Roshi.

    ReplyDelete
  137. Ask this.

    Genjo requests support for cutting ties with Shimano immediately from his peers. Why?

    The present abbess has on-the-job support for six months. Why?

    ReplyDelete
  138. David Scates said...
    I am totally lost.

    ReplyDelete
  139. O.K. So, we're relying on Nonin's statement that Roko said she didn't have an affair with Shimano, plus two anonymous statements that she didn't say she did at the victims' meeting. That should certainly prove her innocence and worthiness as abbess.

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  140. "Nonin: Thanks for clearing up that Shinge Roshi, by her own words, has already denied the sexual allegations against her. Thanks also to to anonymous January 6, 2011 11:43 PM, for the eyewitness account of the DBZ women's meeting that also clears this up.

    --Spike"

    Hello Spike-

    How about a second cup of coffee!? :)

    Anonymous Jan 6 at 11:43 or so was not talking about the Women's meeting at DBZ, but Roko's talk with her sangha in May 2010.

    Also, it does not seems as if this person is a victim.

    But victim or no victim, sure, anyone can post anonymously if they want to!

    However, I wish to affirm those who say, when one person (anonymously) says she didn't say she had sahred stories about having sex with Shimano and another person says (by name) that she did say she shared stories about having sex with Shimano, we have an UNRESOLVED question of fact, don't we?

    Also, I think, someone saying that someone said that they denied having sex, whilst someone else says that that someone said that she had still leaves the issue UNRESOLVED.

    I think that the ONLY way this issue can be resolved, is if Roko answers this question directly herself.

    What do you think?

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  141. Ps. What could these two facts possibly have to do with the present board impasse?

    ReplyDelete
  142. "I think that the ONLY way this issue can be resolved, is if Roko answers this question directly herself."

    AND it is a relevant and fair question, not a Roko-hating one, given the whole sordid and sad history here.

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  143. I think this "issue" is totally irrelevant.

    The simple, undisputed fact that Ms. Chayat has refused to sever her ties to Shimano after forty years of lies is enough evidence of her character.

    Whether she herself has also actually lied won't make it much worse.

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  144. I too was at the meeting at Hoen-ji that Kensei refers to and do not recall Shinge Roshi admitting to an affair with Eido Roshi.
    January 7, 2011 1:11 PM

    Let me clarify my post.
    My recollection of what Shinge said was that many left DBZ due to Eido Roshi's behavior and went to study with Maurine Stewart and that she was one of them. To me, she was saying that she was one that left because of the situation, not necessarily that she was one that had a sexual relationship with him. This could be easily confused by either Kensei or me. I just felt it only fair to put in what I recall.

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  145. The ONLY issue which matters now is if the ZSS board will schedule an immendiate vote, up or down on making a clean break from Shimano and make the results public knowledge.

    ReplyDelete
  146. "I haven't got a punch line for this bit of noodling. Just thinking "

    Gekaku, neither do I, but I like the direction your noodles are taking. Well, I shouldn't say direction, just that they are out and about.

    How about starting from the center and working outwards? The place of no noodles, the place of Buddha, pure free self (Jungian word - can be tricky)....The place where we awake from the dreams presented by various noodles - ours and others. Then work back from there.

    Thinking - Noodling. But actually it's an important question because otherwise we have no places to rest in understanding along the way. Noodle Soup.

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  147. Who needs chaos when we have this.

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  148. 1,001 witnesses with no names, is NO witnesses.

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  149. ps - yes, noodle soup - imagine the indigestion if a constant diet.

    ReplyDelete
  150. mmmmmmm...noodle soup...

    ReplyDelete
  151. David Scates

    "I am totally lost."


    Well, hell David pull up a chair. Si' down why doncha. So am I. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  152. "The ONLY issue which matters now is if the ZSS board will schedule an immendiate vote, up or down on making a clean break from Shimano and make the results public knowledge."

    There you go!

    ReplyDelete
  153. David said,
    "I am totally lost."

    Come to the light, boy...
    Love you David.

    ReplyDelete
  154. David Scates

    "I am totally lost."
    ___________________________________

    I TOLD you to pay attention to those Jesuits! :)

    ReplyDelete
  155. "Let me clarify my post.
    My recollection of what Shinge said was that many left DBZ due to Eido Roshi's behavior and went to study with Maurine Stewart and that she was one of them. To me, she was saying that she was one that left because of the situation, not necessarily that she was one that had a sexual relationship with him. This could be easily confused by either Kensei or me. I just felt it only fair to put in what I recall. "

    Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  156. David,

    Think of this as a prize fight betwwn two guys each with 0-500 win-loss records. The blows come fast and furious and nothing hits home. Its Round 650. Ding.

    ReplyDelete
  157. O.K., guys, I'm all right now. Thanks for the concern. I just couldn't believe the dialogue had gotten that stupid. I figured it must be me.

    ReplyDelete
  158. "REDdirt said...
    Ask this.

    Genjo requests support for cutting ties with Shimano immediately from his peers. Why?

    The present abbess has on-the-job support for six months. Why?"

    O.k., I'll bite... Genjo wants and need outside pressure help to convince Board members to remove Shimano & Roko wants Shimano present for six months to allow for a transfer of Die-hard Shimano support to go to her. Will it save ZSS? Perhaps. But I have to say that if that means keeping Shimano around for six months, the end does not jsutify the means.

    TGIF,

    EL

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  159. Genkaku,

    Jello can easily be nailed to a wall. The trick is in keeping it there.

    The ZSS Board really does need to get on with this and decide.

    ReplyDelete
  160. Sorry for the typos.
    Glad you're o.k. David.
    I think I'm going to try a
    Genkaku-Again - Eido Shimano - fast
    this weekend. It's nothing personal.
    It's not you, its me. :)
    Have a great weekend!

    EL

    ReplyDelete
  161. I agree most wholeheartedly, El.

    I think Genjo is running out of time and need to to force this to a vote.

    REDdirt

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  162. Make it clear. Genjo requests support from those peers outside of ZSS. To me this suggests Roko is opposed. I do not know this to be the case.

    It is obivious the board cannot decide and these two opinions count. I think the AZTA letters are primarily written to a peer nd, of necessity, addressed to the board.

    JMO.

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  163. El said,

    "But I have to say that if that means keeping Shimano around for six months, the end does not jsutify the means.".

    El, I talked to Shimano ... as of December 9 2010
    he said he would stay at DBZ as long as possible.
    This is the reason we should push him to move
    to his luxury apt in Upper East Manhattan to
    spend the rest of his life with his wife.

    Gassho

    ReplyDelete
  164. Nonin statements are contradictory one against another. He said

    "I don't know if it's clear to all of us or not that the allegations about Eido Shimano are more than fifteen years old and that many of Eido's students, current and past, say that there have been no new allegations since, so it seems as if he changed his behavior."

    First, for sure he did not come to the meeting early September 2010 involving FTI, Boards and ZSS Sangha that discussed current scandals. So Nonin statement is empty if not misleading. Second, his statement contradictory to Genjo's statement regarding Shimano's December 1st letter.

    Nonin also said,

    "Please be aware that the Shimano archives will only list messages and letters that attack Eido Shimano, Roko, and the ZSS Board."

    Here again ... Shimano's archive also comes from ZSS Boards. Also contains reports, bylaws, and neutral documents etc ... so ONLY word by Nonin is rather tendencius.

    So I doubt if Nonin now personally talked to Roko or Shimano regarding to their sexual relationship. Yet Nonin, Roko and Shimano now can deceive at will (in Shimano's lineage precepts are child play - not for the ONES in unconditional realm)

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  165. O.K., its not five o'clock yet, so I'm still here...

    "REDdirt said...
    Make it clear. Genjo requests support from those peers outside of ZSS. To me this suggests Roko is opposed. I do not know this to be the case."

    Anonymous said,

    "El, I talked to Shimano ... as of December 9 2010 he said he would stay at DBZ as long as possible."

    Anonymous said,

    "I think Genjo is running out of time and need to to force this to a vote."

    If there is anyone out there reading this blog, who knows Shinge Roshi (especially her students), I urge you to call, write and email with messages of support for her vote to have Shimano removed now.

    EL

    ReplyDelete
  166. Nonin strikes out yet again:


    Shodo,

    This meeting occurred in 1993. There was a need for confidentiality so these women could speak freely and directly without fear of repercussion in any form. This is a common procedure when discussing such a topic.

    All the women at this meeting were not ones who had liaisons with Eido Shimano.

    After this meeting, some women who did have liaisons left ZSS and Roko left in solidarity with them, not because she had an affair with Eido. Later on, I'm not sure how long, she returned to ZSS.

    I hope that this answers your questions.

    Hands palm-to-palm,

    Nonin

    ReplyDelete
  167. Oh man, Nonin!

    It's time for your afternoon nap!

    From the ZCS website:

    "She received lay ordination from Maurine Stuart at the Cambridge Buddhist Association in 1985 and full ordination from Eido Roshi at Dai Bosatsu Zendo in 1991. Eido Roshi acknowledged her as a Dharma teacher in the Rinzai tradition on December 8, 1992, and installed her as abbot of the Zen Center of Syracuse on October 18, 1996."

    Nonin - she left when?

    ReplyDelete
  168. It sounds to me like he has never read the entire archive. Many people commenting haven't.

    He should in particular read:

    http://www.shimanoarchive.com/PDFs/19990600_Margot_Wilkie.pdf

    ReplyDelete
  169. He didn't get the moniker "The Prairie Wind-Bag" for nothing.

    ReplyDelete
  170. REDdirt said,
    "I think Genjo is running out of time and need to to force this to a vote."

    MLK Sesshin begins Jan. 12. That gives him four days, lest Shimano gets to settled in with his new retirement lifestyle, with too much time on his hands...

    ReplyDelete
  171. Oh my goodness, this poor fellow Nonin's mind is unravelling. He's been told so many lies that he is falling apart!

    It's really not funny because we have seen many people, like Mr. Chowaney, whose gullibility has been exploited in the past. They get so packed up with disconnected lies that at some point they just blather away and repeat every ridiculous lie they have been told.

    And for a while they try desperately to compile all the lies into a story that could be remotely plausible. But then they collapse. It's brutal to watch.

    Inside the Zen Studies Society, we call "spokesmen" like Mr. Chowaney, "The Chump". Chumps are extremely valuable.
    ...
    It's quite disturbing to watch Marinello and Chyat exploit their "friend" in this way. Very disturbing, amoral and cruel.

    ReplyDelete
  172. Shodo-
    Would you please ask Nonin why the 1993 women's meeting was held at DBZ instead of elsewhere, and why no women who were sexually abused were present?

    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  173. Re. Margot Wilkie pdf at 3:02 p.m.

    "There were six of us on the board at Zen Studies who left including Peter Matthiessen.
    Haven’t seen Eido since. I just wrote him a letter and we were through. He had no
    remorse. He thought Americans were stupid and had no bones about saying it. We were
    crude and uncivilized. He thought nothing of women. The head of the Syracuse Zendo,
    left with her husband . She went back and he was responsible for their break-up. She
    went back and studied with him and got transmission and runs a group and feels fine
    about it We six who had left the Daibosatsu zendo and Zen studies kept in touch.."

    ReplyDelete
  174. I am at work atm... but I will ask Nonin the question you asked, as well as include genkaku's post from the archives regarding Margaret Wilkie's testimony...

    But keep in mind, Nonin tends to lose patience with me often... he thinks I am some kind of conspirator me'thinks:)

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  175. This would be quite simply . All ZSS has to do is release the statement I was sent in which Roko responds to my question.

    It denied any sexual liason. It also stated that her divorce from her husband was predicated on his falling in love with another woman and had nothing to do with DBZ.

    Unfortunately I erase e mails at least weekly and that one was gone several months ago. If anyone is interested enough to check there may be yet note made of having recieved it somewhere early in this thread. If it was not lost in the big Ohno where did all the emails go incident.

    I am far too lazy to do such work.

    ReplyDelete
  176. Ok, I posted the Margaret Wilkie quote as well as the question directed to Nonin.:)

    Hopefully it wont get deleted...


    Nonin, I have a question that was asked me to ask you over on genkaku's blog... in regards to this quote regarding the 1993 meeting at DaiBosatsu where you said:

    All the women at this meeting were not ones who had liaisons with Eido Shimano.



    the question was this:

    Shodo-
    Would you please ask Nonin why the 1993 woman's meeting was held at DBZ instead of elsewhere, and why no women who were sexually abused were present?

    Thanks



    Also, this posting from Margaret Wilkie, who sat on the ZSS board bears some considering:

    "There were six of us on the board at Zen Studies who left including Peter Matthiessen.
    Haven’t seen Eido since. I just wrote him a letter and we were through. He had no
    remorse. He thought Americans were stupid and had no bones about saying it. We were
    crude and uncivilized. He thought nothing of women. The head of the Syracuse Zendo,
    left with her husband . She went back and he was responsible for their break-up. She
    went back and studied with him and got transmission and runs a group and feels fine
    about it We six who had left the Daibosatsu zendo and Zen studies kept in touch.."

    http://www.shimanoarchive.com/PDFs/1999 ... Wilkie.pdf

    It is easy to see why folks have suspicions, so many folks who were there say otherwise...

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  177. Shodo -- Just for future reference, mentioning my name is not likely to put Nonin in a better frame of mind. :)

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  178. hehehe yeah... sorry bout that, I will know better next time.:)

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  179. "All the women at this meeting were not ones who had liaisons with Eido Shimano."

    I suspect what Nonin meant to say/should have said "Not all the women at this meeting were ones who had liaisons with Eido Shimano."

    It's a common error--like saying "All that glitters is not gold" (implying that even gold, which glitters, isn't gold), when the more accurate statement is "Not all that glitters is gold."

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  180. Nonin seems very insecure and defensive whenever anyone questions the party line or fails to show proper deference. His attitude has resulted in banishment of some ZFI members and voluntary departure of others. Considering that he himself was banned from the rather intolerant and now defunct e-sangha, he doesn't seem very accepting or understanding of views that differ from his own. Just one more example of a Zen master who hasn't mastered "no-self, no-other".

    I guess that's to be expected from career priests who rely on a steady stream of complacent students for their food, clothing, shelter, transportation, and health care. How can we expect them to tell us, their students, the truth when it isn't in their own best interests to be honest and objective? It's a conflict of interest, IMO, and will continue to be a problem as long as we pay these teachers, one way or another, to lead us in our spiritual quests.

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  181. Why is anyone here giving this Nonin character any credence?

    Who cares what he thinks? Why care?

    His views are are clearly based on an elitist selectivity, making him particularly biased, and seem to be small minded even petty.

    He does not seem to have any real knowledge of ZSS, further I haven't seen that any of Shimano's victims or even any former students have studied with him.

    He is not particular clear on any issue while he does write with a pompous arrogant style. He is far from inspiring.

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  182. "Why is anyone here giving this Nonin character any credence?"

    The simple answer is, he is running interference on behalf of ZSS over at ZFI, the most widely-read Zen forum in the world.

    Moreover, like many of his ilk, he is holding fast to cookie-cutter style interpretations of dharma at the expense of fostering real awakening. It's my understanding that his transmission was conducted in a sort of mass ceremony involving many (as in close to a dozen) recipients--a sort of Walmartization of transmisison, if you will. That, of course, is not advertised, since we would all much rather believe that Zen teachers' transmission rituals are precious, individualized, sacred rites that couldn't possibly be mass-produced. But the demand for spiritual leaders has to be met if Zen is ever to establish itself in the West.

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  183. Regarding getting things done.

    Does anyone know what the particulars of the Zen Studies Society re-organization yet? Not that I am especially optimistic given the loyalty factors.

    Will be a second wave of letters demanding that poor Soun, Sherri, Lamp Chop or Hush Puppy have the courtesy to respond to the first wave of letters?

    Oy!

    Assign whomever you wish the roles of Lamp Chop and Hush Puppy.

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  184. Kukla, Fran and Ollie?

    ReplyDelete
  185. OK...

    Some critical thinking.

    Can someone help me understand Jiro's thinking, but particularly Jiro .

    "I will close by suggesting that Roko publicly deny the allegations that she had an affair with the abbot. I will be happy if the allegations go away. I am not a rumor monger. The (alleged) affair was reported to me many years ago by women who were present in that women’s meeting in the guest house in 1993. I have never alluded to it except in my last letter to you, since it seems pertinent to the recently published ethics guidelines of the Zen Studies Society. I consider these women honest and unimpeachable as well, so I give credence to their account of what happened in that meeting."

    Given the scope of the situation why recommend lying instead of telling the truth?

    Having asked the question, I want to commend Jiro for still asking Kobutsu to post that letter to the archives even if it points to some poor judgement or some unspoken self serving motivation.

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  186. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  187. "Those with any brains left long ago."

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  188. Those with true hearts also are gone.

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  189. Those with agendas prosper here.

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  190. "Sorry to out you in this way Kensei---"

    KatsuAn, you are a sorry piece of work. I'm trying to be polite.

    REDdirt

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  191. Silence.

    There is NO EXCUSE for what was just done here.

    NONE.

    Good (f*#king) bye.

    Mike

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  192. Oh my God,Mike.I agree.
    EL

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  193. KatsuAn,you have not soul.
    EL

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  194. KatsuAn, in your heartless attempt to discredit the writings of Kensei, you've done no one anyone favors.

    Plus, this information about him does not mean he lied. Possibly it gives him more credence.

    I am not sure what this says about you.

    I wonder if this sort of thing is what we can absorb unconsciously when "training" with the likes of Shimano, Chayat, etc,

    "I do believe the Genkaku-Eido Tia Shimano blog just hit bottom."
    Really. This is sickening.

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  195. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  196. Could someone please, for "the rest of us", explain what just happened? Who is Kensei, and why this unanimous support of him/her? Should this be the next abbot/abbess?

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  197. "Anyone who uses this information to injure, harass, or commit a criminal act against any person may be subject to criminal prosecution."

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