Eido T. Shimano Dies

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Caodemarte
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Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Thu Feb 22, 2018 4:33 pm

Not to re-open old wounds, but Eido T. Shimano, died on February 18 in Japan at the age of 85. A troubled man leaving a troubling legacy
(http://www.shimanoarchive.com/ says pretty much all about that).

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Meido
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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Meido » Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:24 pm

Report is he succumbed to pneumonia.

NY Times obituary here:

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nytime ... =188253175
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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:38 pm

Meido wrote:
Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:24 pm
..NY Times obituary here....
It is strange that the NYT does not mention its own reporting over the years. I assume the obituary was written by friends or family or sourced from them as is often the case.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Meido » Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:41 pm

The Rinzai Zen Way: A Guide to Practice
Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org
Madison, WI Rinzai Zen Community [機山龍源寺] - http://www.madisonrinzaizen.org
The Rinzai Zen Community - http://www.rinzaizen.org

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by fuki » Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:50 pm

The Death of Eido Roshi, Problematic Pioneer

The passing of a Soto Zen leader, marred by sexual misconduct allegations, ends the generation of Japanese-born Zen masters who introduced Americans to Zen. A former student reflects on part of this cohort’s legacy in the wake of #MeToo.
https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/death-eido-roshi-metoo/
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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by KeithA » Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:43 pm

fuki wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:50 pm
The Death of Eido Roshi, Problematic Pioneer

The passing of a Soto Zen leader, marred by sexual misconduct allegations, ends the generation of Japanese-born Zen masters who introduced Americans to Zen. A former student reflects on part of this cohort’s legacy in the wake of #MeToo.
https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/death-eido-roshi-metoo/
He wasn't a Soto teacher, afaik.
You make, you get.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:07 pm

KeithA wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:43 pm
....He wasn't a Soto teacher, afaik.
Definitely not Soto. He was in the Rinzai line, receiving transmission from Sōen Nakagawa Roshi. However, Sōen Nakagawa Roshi did not officially register Eido Shimano in his line of dharma heirs. This was clearly a deliberate, significant action and not a mere oversight. Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense. This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense.

So a Rinzai teacher in the sense of having received Rinzai transmission, but not in the sense of being part of the Rinzai sect or organization and not considered a good or “real” one by at least some other senior teachers.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by KeithA » Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:33 pm

Caodemarte wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:07 pm
KeithA wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:43 pm
....He wasn't a Soto teacher, afaik.
Definitely not Soto. He was in the Rinzai line, receiving transmission from Sōen Nakagawa Roshi. However, Sōen Nakagawa Roshi did not officially register Eido Shimano in his line of dharma heirs. This was clearly a deliberate, significant action and not a mere oversight. Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense. This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense.

So a Rinzai teacher in the sense of having received Rinzai transmission, but not in the sense of being part of the Rinzai sect or organization and not considered a good or “real” one by at least some other senior teachers.
Thanks for the clarification. I have to admit to not liking the shiny Buddhist periodicals all that much. That's one reason why.

Anyways, as to the Shimano saga:
There are, strictly speaking, no enlightened people, there is only enlightened activity.
Shunryu Suzuki

It's worth being careful who we ascribe special insight to, imho. Better yet, probably just avoid doing it in the first place.

_/|\_

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by jundocohen » Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:47 pm

Caodemarte wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:07 pm
KeithA wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:43 pm
....He wasn't a Soto teacher, afaik.
Definitely not Soto. He was in the Rinzai line, receiving transmission from Sōen Nakagawa Roshi. However, Sōen Nakagawa Roshi did not officially register Eido Shimano in his line of dharma heirs. This was clearly a deliberate, significant action and not a mere oversight. Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense. This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense.

So a Rinzai teacher in the sense of having received Rinzai transmission, but not in the sense of being part of the Rinzai sect or organization and not considered a good or “real” one by at least some other senior teachers.
Just for the historical record, a report confirming this by Eido Shimano's Dharma Heir Genjo Marinello:

http://sweepingzen.com/dharma-transmission-2/

Gassho, J
Teacher at Treeleaf Zendo, a Soto Zen Sangha, an online practice place for folks who cannot commute to a Zen Center due to health, living in remote areas, work or family needs. The focus is Shikantaza 'Just Sitting' Zazen http://www.treeleaf.org

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:10 pm

KeithA wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:33 pm
..
Thanks for the clarification. I have to admit to not liking the shiny Buddhist periodicals all that much...
To be fair, I don’t believe that is anywhere in the actual article. The story correctly calls him a Rinzai leader, just the summary in the posting here calls him a Soto teacher.

Some of the non-Buddhist press have been naively repeating Shimano’s romantic story about the founding of his group without any fact checking. Oh well, I guess even Jove nods from time to time.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Meido » Fri Feb 23, 2018 6:43 pm

Caodemarte wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:07 pm
Definitely not Soto. He was in the Rinzai line, receiving transmission from Sōen Nakagawa Roshi. However, Sōen Nakagawa Roshi did not officially register Eido Shimano in his line of dharma heirs. This was clearly a deliberate, significant action and not a mere oversight. Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense. This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense.

So a Rinzai teacher in the sense of having received Rinzai transmission, but not in the sense of being part of the Rinzai sect or organization and not considered a good or “real” one by at least some other senior teachers.
C, some of what you wrote is accurate I think, but some could be unpacked a bit more. There was a long thread at ZFI some years ago where we did this, but I'll sum up here what I said there:

RE: "Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense."

As far as I know this is true: "no official or administrative tie". But the part not understood by many folks is that it is true for basically all Rinzai groups outside of Japan. Important points:

1. Rinzai Zen in Japan is not one org in the way Soto-shu is. It is actually 14 different lineages (15 if you count Obaku-shu), each of which has its own H.Q., administration, and branches to oversee. There is cooperation of course, but also a degree of maintained separate identity. Furthermore,

2. None of these has any administrative control or significant outreach overseas that I know of. Personal and lineage relationships exist, but not organizational control (much as Japanese temples did not ever fall under Chinese ecclesiastic or imperial control).

So the lack of official organizational connection between Eido Roshi's place and Japan is the norm, not indicative of anything. Further,

3. Teacher certification in Rinzai Zen - i.e. inka shomei, mind-seal - is not an administrative function, and not controlled administratively at all. It is solely something private between teacher and student. Therefore, whatever one thinks of Eido Roshi, or whatever misgivings Soen Roshi might be theorized to have later had: Eido Roshi was a legitimate Rinzai Zen teacher because Soen Roshi said so (and conducted a ceremony to that end) publicly. Thus, so is anyone to whom Eido Roshi gave inka. The presence or lack thereof of records in an official register of dharma heirs means pretty much nothing, except what I have already said: no organizational or administrative ties existed. Lineage transmission and organizational affiliation are related but completely different things, though is a common error to conflate them.

Of course, one can and should question what such teacher certification really means. In fact, inka shomei - though it is required in Rinzai Zen to be a teacher empowered to train students, that is, to be the shike (Zen master, Roshi) of a monastery and to conduct sanzen - has never been seen to mean that one is finished, a "master" with nothing left to do, etc. It really just means that going forward one is empowered to self-guide, and (assuming one has permission to do so, which is not automatic with inka) may lead others to the extent one is able.

Actually, in the Rinzai model of practice, it is after inka that one enters the truly difficult stage. It requires tremendous effort and continued exhaustive training over many years. But if someone fails to do this - perhaps by getting caught up in a role or other concerns, or by not addressing one's own shadow sides, addictions, etc. - it is certainly possible to fail in one's personal training. Some people with inka will not, in the end, be able to leap across this chasm of advanced practice (they could still help others depending on the conditions, but at the very least their own practice cannot be said to be complete).

RE: "This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense."

As I've explained, no dharma heir requires organizational recognition to be legitimate. They only require the sanction of their own likewise sanctioned teachers. In fact, as with other Zen traditions, we should note that some of the Rinzai Zen teachers that came West did so precisely to escape what they viewed as the moribund state of Zen in Japan and administrative control from Japanese H.Q. temples.

So it cannot be said that Eido Roshi's teaching or training of his students was not legitimate. It may be argued that it was problematic, idiosyncratic, marred by his behavior, etc. It falls to his heirs to address and heal what they've inherited, if they can. Recently it appears that DBZ has had support from other Rinzai teachers in Japan, which is encouraging to me as it means they will be exposed to other streams of teaching, and will have access to a broader view and greater practice resources. I also notice that the websites of Eido Roshi's heirs that I can find state openly that they are his dharma heirs, even as these people work to openly confront the very real problems that were revealed.

The actual inheritance from Eido Roshi that each of these persons carries is complex and mixed. Their job is to address the shortcomings, but continue to preserve what was of value. Though naturally Eido Roshi's case may be considered extreme, this job is something all of us must in fact do with our teachers.

As I've said before, I personally wish them very well, and believe they can succeed. If not, then we may at least take comfort from knowing that Zen lineages that lose crucial threads of vitality and embodied realization tend to die out. This last bit is something for all of us to consider as we view our own shortcomings, lacks, and (speaking for myself) often tepid dedication to practice.

~ Meido
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Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org
Madison, WI Rinzai Zen Community [機山龍源寺] - http://www.madisonrinzaizen.org
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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by boda » Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:31 pm

Meido wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 6:43 pm
Of course, one can and should question what such teacher certification really means. In fact, inka shomei - though it is required in Rinzai Zen to be a teacher empowered to train students, that is, to be the shike (Zen master, Roshi) of a monastery and to conduct sanzen - has never been seen to mean that one is finished, a "master" with nothing left to do, etc. It really just means that going forward one is empowered to self-guide, and (assuming one has permission to do so, which is not automatic with inka) may lead others to the extent one is able.

Actually, in the Rinzai model of practice, it is after inka that one enters the truly difficult stage. It requires tremendous effort and continued exhaustive training over many years. But if someone fails to do this - perhaps by getting caught up in a role or other concerns, or by not addressing one's own shadow sides, addictions, etc. - it is certainly possible to fail in one's personal training. Some people with inka will not, in the end, be able to leap across this chasm of advanced practice (they could still help others depending on the conditions, but at the very least their own practice cannot be said to be complete).
All religions require some sort of authority figure and the function of inka helps to fulfill this requirement in Rinzai Zen, so in this way inka is not meaningless. However, the way you describe it, it's meaningless rationally.

If it means that one possesses the ability to self-guide, but one can fail in their self-guidance, then inka is meaningless.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:02 pm

Meido wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 6:43 pm
[

C, some of what you wrote is accurate I think, but some could be unpacked a bit more. There was a long thread at ZFI some years ago where we did this, but I'll sum up here what I said there:

RE: "Eido Shimano’s group had no official or administrative tie to the main Rinzai organization in Japan and so would not be a Rinzai sect teacher in the organizational sense."

As far as I know this is true: "no official or administrative tie". But the part not understood by many folks is that it is true for basically all Rinzai groups outside of Japan. Important points:

None of these has any administrative control or significant outreach overseas that I know of. Personal and lineage relationships exist, but not organizational control (much as Japanese temples did not ever fall under Chinese ecclesiastic or imperial control).
....: "This means that no heir of Eido Shimano is recognized as a Rinzai teacher by the organization (heirs of heirs are in an even shakier position, if they care). Beyond administrative concerns, senior teachers in the organization have apparently let it be known that they do not believe that Eido Shimano’s teaching or training of his students was true or legitimate training in any sense."[/i]

As I've explained, no "heir" requires organizational recognition to be legitimate. They only require the sanction of their own likewise sanctioned teachers....
So it cannot be said that Eido Roshi's teaching or training of his students was not legitimate. It may be argued that it was problematic, idiosyncratic, marred by his behavior, etc. ...
As I've said before, I personally wish them very well...
Just noting that Mt. Baldy, with its own teacher problems, is an official betsuin (branch temple) of Myoshinji (is head temple) as is Falaise Verte Zen Centre in France. They are the only Rinzai betsuin in the West that I am aware of. They are not under the direct administrative or budget control of Myoshinji, but are affiliated organizationally or officially, somewhat like McDonald’s or other franchises I guess :D .

Nobody requires administrative sanction to be morally or religiously legitimate. I understand the reports to say that this was a reference to senior teaches saying that they viewed the training itself as lacking moral or religious legitimacy in the sense of being so throughly problematic, marred by immoral or corrupt behavior, etc. as to be not religiously useful. Granted that the actual effect of this training depends more on the student than the teacher, just as one can end up morally strengthened by persecution by people wiith bad motives, but persecution for bad motives itself is not itself a legitimate act in this sense. However, please note that I am here trying to clarify how I used the word legitimate. Again, no one may care about the views of others, especially in far off Japan, and everyone must make their own judgments about their own training.

I think we all wish all former students of Eido Shimano well as we wish all beings well.

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Meido » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:19 pm

Thanks for clarifying, it makes sense.
Caodemarte wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:02 pm
Just noting that Mt. Baldy, with its own teacher problems, is an official betsuin (branch temple) of Myoshinji (is head temple) as is Falaise Verte Zen Centre in France. They are the only Rinzai betsuin in the West that I am aware of.
Good to know. I didn't realize that they had betsuin status, though not surprising as I'm not terribly knowledgeable RE the details of other Rinzai lines. Our line here comes through Tenryu-ji, but no such organizational tie with that daihonzan exists. Omori Roshi established his lineage here in a manner independent from Japan right from the start.

It will be interesting to see to what extent any of the Rinzai lines in Japan develop overseas outreach in the future. Especially for DBZ and Mt. Baldy right now I imagine it is a fortunate thing to have active lineage and personal relationships as a support.

~ Meido
The Rinzai Zen Way: A Guide to Practice
Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org
Madison, WI Rinzai Zen Community [機山龍源寺] - http://www.madisonrinzaizen.org
The Rinzai Zen Community - http://www.rinzaizen.org

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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by fuki » Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:01 pm

Caodemarte wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:10 pm
To be fair, I don’t believe that is anywhere in the actual article. The story correctly calls him a Rinzai leader, just the summary in the posting here calls him a Soto teacher.
I copy/pasted the header of the article, the article has corrected the soto/rinzai mistake. I didn't notice the error while reading/pasting.

They've corrected it.
The attachment 2018-02-23 22.10.29.png is no longer available
Thanks to Jundo.
2018-02-23 22.10.29.png
2018-02-23 22.10.29.png (93.33 KiB) Viewed 224 times
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Re: Eido T. Shimano Dies

Post by Caodemarte » Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:07 pm

fuki wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:01 pm
....I copy/pasted the header of the article, the article has corrected the soto/rinzai mistake. I didn't notice the error while reading/pasting...
No worries Fuki. Headline writers are usually separate from article writers. Sometimes they only glance at the article; sometimes they only get a verbal summary at newspapers.

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