About the German monk who ended up becoming our abbot.
Antaiji is a Zen monastery that commits itself to the practice of zazen and the study of the Buddha’s teaching, while cultivating the fields around the temple, cutting grass and trees and doing construction work to keep the community self-sufficient. We practice Zen without additions or modifications. Zazen is practiced solely for the purpose of zazen. What is that good for? The answer is easy: Nothing!
My Teacher’s House
Shinyu Miyaura and the History of Antaiji in Hyogo According to Muho Noelke
(by Edward Moore)
II – A Delicate Flower and the Trump of Zen (4)
Edward: How did Miyaura get along with Watanabe? Did he look up to him?
Muho: I think in the beginning it was ok. It could be that he was looking up to him but that there was an unspoken stress as well. He was one of the original Watanabe students who made it easy for him to deal with Uchiyama’s people. The new students were unconditionally loyal, while the old ones would resist.
Edward: Was he particularly close to Watanabe?
Muho: I have the feeling he was not the very closest. There was another guy who was probably the closest. He was like a cult follower. He left after seven or eight years because there was a priest in Hiroshima who was building a new temple and needed a priest. He asked Watanabe if he could have one of Antaiji’s monks. So Watanabe said, of course choose whoever you want. He picked the top guy, the one closest to Watanabe. Watanabe let him go. For whatever reason, I don’t know.
If this guy hadn’t left, I’m sure he would have made him abbot because that was the person he trusted the most. He was also involved in Watanabe’s conflict with Miyaura much later on. He was often used by Watanabe as a communicator to Miyaura. He was my teacher’s senpai but age-wise and practice-wise they were not so far from each other. He wasn’t a super smart guy but he had a university education and could read books. He was a bit more intellectual than Miyaura.
Edward: How […]