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Temple News


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Busshin  - April

(PDF file, 3.3mb)

Busshin  - February

(PDF file, 4.7mb)



NOV:     6th, 13th    Essence of Zen Study Group 7:30pm

              9th      Chasen Kuyo Tea Ceremony    11am-3pm

             10th     Veteran’s Day - temple closed

             11th     Board Meeting    7:30pm

             16th     Shichi-Go-San   11am

             22nd   Entering the Temple Ceremony & Dharma talk by Gengo Akiba Roshi   4pm

             23rd    Fujinkai Meeting  10am

                          Dharma Inquiry Ceremony  10am

                          Monthly Service & Memorial  11am

                           Potluck Luncheon   12pm

              27th    Thanksgiving Day - temple closed

              30 - Dec 6   Rohatsu Sesshin    6am-8pm


DEC:     Nov 30 - Dec 6   Rohatsu Sesshin    6am-8pm

             7th       Jukai Ceremony   10am

                          Jodo-E & Monthly Service & Memorial  11am

                          Potluck Luncheon  12pm

             9th        Board Meeting  7:30pm

             14th     Garden Cleaning/Omigaki   9am

                          Goeika Osame   1pm

             21st     Dr. Kato’s Buddhism Lecture in Japanese  10am

             25th     Christmas Day - temple closed

             27th     Mochigome Washing   8am

             28th     Mochitsuki   7am - 4pm   

              31st     Year-End Service   4pm




We are excited to announce that our long awaited Zenshuji Sutra books have finally arrived!  Sokan Daigaku Rumme, who initiated this project 2 ½ years ago, felt a need to publish our very own book filled with sutras typically chanted here at Zenshuji during memorial/Sunday service and daily service and includes the meal verses as well as other significant Mahayanan sutras. The sutras are written in English, Roma-ji and Japanese. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the committee members, our sutra book project has finally come to fruition. It was a labor of love and commitment on the part of everyone involved. Thank you to Sokan Rumme, Kojima Sensei, Toho Sensei, Julie Iwamoto, Atsuko Kubota and Sunil Vernekar.

The books will be available for use in the Hondo and also for sale to individuals who would like their very own copy. They are hard bound and will sell for $25.00 each. For those who cannot pick up a copy from the Temple, we will be happy to sell by mail order. which will include a shipping fee of $5.  Mail Order Form here.



- English side -


- Japanese side -



Sat. Nov. 22: At 4:00 p.m., there will be an “Entering the Temple Ceremony” followed by a talk given by Gengo Akiba Roshi which you are all invited to attend. His talk will be on the koan “Ungan’s Great Compassion.”


Sun. Nov. 23: At 10:00 a.m., we will have a “Dharma Inquiry Ceremony” for Rev. Jisho Sara Siebert, a disciple of Akiba Roshi. These two ceremonies (Sat. and Sun.) are connected. In the Sunday ceremony, Jisho will be asked questions from the Assembly, both ordained and lay. You are welcome to attend. You are invited to ask her a question during the ceremony, particularly about compassion. I hope there will be a good turnout for these ceremonies. This kind of ceremony is one which all Soto priests are expected to complete. It marks a certain stage in the formation of a priest.

ROHATSU SESSHIN - NOV 30th to DEC 6th      


You are all invited to attend Rohatsu Sesshin, our one and only

sesshin of the year at Zenshuji. (A sesshin is a week-long retreat

in which people devote themselves to zazen.) This year, Rohatsu

Sesshin will begin on Sunday, Nov. 30th, and conclude at

midnight on Sat. Dec. 6th.


Three meals will be served each day. For those who plan to join us for meals, it would be good to know if you are planning to eat with us. If you are planning to sit for quite a bit of the Sesshin, please send an email to to register. We often get more people sitting with us on Sunday and particularly on Saturday, the last day. There is a suggested donation of $50- 150, on a sliding scale depending on your situation. Please come and join us, even if you can only sit for an hour or two.




Zenshuji Temple’s celebration for children Shichi-Go-San (7-5-3 years old) will be held on Sunday November 16, 2014 @ 11:00am.   Usually girls of seven years, boys of 5 years and boys and girls of 3 years go to the local shrine to express gratitude to the Gods for their growth and continued blessings.  The children dress in colorful traditional costumes as they enter the shrine.  If Western attire is worn, the children dress up in party dresses and suits. The children are given candy called “chitoseame” (thousand year candy) to promise them long life.  We need to order these candies from Japan.  Pictures are taken by the proud parents for these mile stones.  We will have Alan Miyatake of Toyo Miyatake Studio, San Gabriel taking pictures for this memorable event.  Come early to take your pictures before the service.  Alan will be downstairs. All children must register with the ministers at Zenshuji.  Please call (213) 624-8658 and make your reservation.   Deadline is November 8, 2014 to register.



Sun. Dec. 7: At 10:00 a.m., we will have a special ceremony to formally present the rakusus to the 11 people who have sewn one of these items. These people will formally take the precepts during this ceremony. This ceremony will be followed at 11:00 a.m. with “Enlightenment Day Ceremony” which commemorates the enlightenment of Shakyamuni Buddha.