‘December Fan’ by Kiyozawa Manshi either on Zoom facilitated by Satya or at the temple facilitated by Kaspa.
Register by 30th October. Meetings on Sundays 5pm – 6pm UK time for 5 weeks – 20th Nov, 27th Nov, 4th Dec, 11th Dec, 18th Dec. Books to be loaned out/sent and returned after the study group as not available in the UK. Read more and register here.
Kiyozawa Manshi was a Buddhist reformer who lived in Japan from 1863 to 1901. He was a strong believer in the practical uses of Buddhism, and his own faith made it possible for him to remain steady and happy despite a life of great suffering. This short book of his essays covers friendship, religious conviction, how to live and more. We’ve imported the books from Japan and so they will be precious!!
Here’s a quote from the first essay, ‘Spiritual Awareness’:
“It is important to establish our lives upon perfectly firm ground. Without a firm basis, all of our efforts will be in vain. It is like doing acrobatics atop a cloud – an impossible feat. The performers are sure to fall.
How can one attain that perfectly firm ground? In my opinion, we arrive at it only through an encounter with the Infinite, or the Absolute. It is unnecessary to speculate whether the Infinite is within or without. Because the Infinite is where the seeker find sit, we cannot define the Infinite as internal or external. We cannot stand on firm ground except by encountering the Infinite. This is what we call spiritual awareness: the process of inner development through which we gain that perfectly firm ground.”
More about Manshi: “A Japanese Buddhist reformer and educator of the Meiji period (1868-1912). A member of the Jodo Shinshu Higashi-Hongwanji school, he was ordained at an early age and educated at the school’s expense. A brilliant student, he specialized in philosophy and concentrated his own thought on elucidating the relationship between the contingent and the absolute. He credited three sources as having decisive influence in the formation of his thought: Shinran (1173-1262), Epictetus, and the early Buddhist Agamas. Based on this combination of influences, he followed Shinshu teaching in entrusting himself entirely to the compassion (karuna) and the vows of the Buddha Amitabha, but still led a rigorously ascetic life of reflection and study.”