Sensei's Monthly Messages

As October ends and November begins, we have watched a great World Series filled with much excitement and hope. Even though Los Angeles Dodger fans were disappointed and heart broken for the outcome. I reflect on all the memories shared and all the hopes for the future, which made our lives bright. I think about …read more

Once in a Lifetime … Did You Have Your Awesome Looking Glasses?

Once in a Lifetime … Did You Have Your Awesome Looking Glasses?

How many times have we said to ourselves, “This is once in a Lifetime?” We are constantly telling ourselves, “This is it, there will never be another one like it,” but how many of us really listen to what we know is the truth? On Monday, August 21, 2017, it was one of those times. …read more

We Have a New GoMonShu (Head Priest)!

We Have a New GoMonShu (Head Priest)!

On March 31, 2017, a group from the Venice Hongwanji Buddhist Temple had the opportunity to attend the Dento Hokoku Hoyo Service held at Ryukoku-zan, the head temple for the Jodo Shinshu Hongwanji-ha school of Buddhism in Kyoto, Japan. The Dento Hokoku Hoyo or Head Priest Accession Service allowed us all as Jodo Shinshu followers …read more

The light of your face is unsurpassed in majesty, Your awesome greatness is beyond limit, A brightly shining flame with no equal. Next to your brilliance, Even the brightness of sun, Moon, and Manji jewel (any jewel from sutra) seem covered in black ink. — Larger Sutra of Immeasurable Life It is February, and I …read more

It Rained on Our Parade! OBON!

It Rained on Our Parade! OBON!

Obon! Awwwwww Obon. This is when everyone travels to the temple to come together, reconnect, and strengthen our familial and communal bonds. We work hard and then dance as one in gratitude and appreciation for the lives that we have been given by those that have come before us. Let’s talk about the joy of …read more

Nenbutsu Grows Where Water Flows

Water Water Water… I borrowed the term above. Recently, our members and I were able to attend the BCA’s National Council Meetings in Visalia, California. As you drive through central California you will see signs with the phrase “Food Grows Where Water Flows.” It is to awaken us all to the urgency of the drought …read more

What Do You Mean These Aren’t My Shoes?

I started this piece with this question, because growing up in the BCA, the Buddhist Churches of America, I have always felt we were following our ministers by Watching and Living by their example. VHBT has a GREAT lineage of past ministers. As the new minister, I felt that it was my honor and duty …read more

Other Shore

I believe that Buddhism is different from other religions. The reason is that Buddhism never talks about becoming a good person. 90% of all religions emphasize to be a good person. In order to do so, people can believe in God or in Buddha. Or, I can state that they need the help from them. …read more

Arigatou

Arigatou is the Japanese word for Thank You. Although thank you is the English translation for arigatou, the word itself also explains for us why we would want to say thank you. The word arigatou is made by combining the two kanji characters aru or “to have,” “to exist,” and the character gatai or “difficult.” …read more

On Being Strong, Powerful and Rich

Although January is a very busy and celebratory month, February, despite being the shortest month of the year, is also a very busy month for Americans. For example, President’s Day is observed in February. It is also the month when we observe Superbowl Sunday. It is also when thousands if not millions of men, some …read more