A flower opens… Another step taken in Kanshoji zen monastery’s development…

A seed germinates, a plant grows, giving fruits, which in turn give seeds…

March 5th-6th, 2013, under the high benevolence of Donin Minamizawa roshi, we celebrated Kanshoji’s 10th anniversary, the inauguration of the new dojo and the hossenshiki ceremony of Jifu Olivier Pressac.

Dônin Minamisawa roshi was accompanied by a delegation of monks from Eiheiji. Many kyoshis and members of the International Zen Association were present, as well as a large contingent of Kanshoji’s sangha. The craftsmen who helped build the new dojo, and who have become friends, were also there.

Cérémonie anniversaire des 10 ans de Kanshoji

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Dônin Minamizawa Roshi a eu la bienveillance de participer à ces grands événements. Il y a dix ans déjà, il était venu pour inaugurer le monastère Kanshoji.



Cérémonie du thé (Honsokucha)

Cérémonie HonsukuchaCérémonie honsokucha


As a prelude to the hossenshiki ceremony, the assembly takes part in a tea ceremony. The doctrinal case is introduced and commented by the abbot.

Below is the teaching by Taiun Jean-Pierre Faure:

« In our school, we talk about the “Peak of the Great Hero, where one sits alone”. Master Dogen says that it is the great door that all buddhas and patriarchs go through.

To sit on that peak, highest of all, is to experience the sublime solitude where the chatter between self and self is annihilated. There we can see the obvious: a vast perspective, where discriminating consciousness is abolished.

Wanting to stay on that peak, far from the madding crowd, is not what Buddha taught. Thinking only of our own salvation is not what Buddha taught. Even if acceding to that sublime solitude is unavoidable, it is inseparable from the vow to share that awakening with all beings. This means that to reach the top of the mountain is also to step down into the depth of the valleys, where the family of buddhas dwells in suffering and turpitude.

There is no place where we could enjoy freedom and peace of mind alone, cut from the world.

In fact, the sitting practice which Buddha talks about is sitting in the midst of the world, where, in sublime solitude, we are in unity and empathy with all beings, where we feel and hear the cry of the world and where we respond to it wholeheartedly.

To sit on the Peak of the Great Hero is to be in unity with all beings, free from aversion and concupiscence for what surrounds us. Don’t fool yourself in believing that there is a place that escapes the resonance with the world, a nirvana separated from samsara. The sublime peak of our life is precisely when nirvana and samsara is one single thing. But realizing this is not easy, not automatic: it requires a strong aspiration and a great vigilance. It requires courage and patience. That is what I wish you all.

The abbot of the monastery, Taiun Roshi.»


Lors de cette cérémonie, Jifu Olivier Pressac prit officiellement sa place de shuso, moine de premier rang. Il y exprima détermination, force et délicatesse.

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Inauguration du nouveau dojo

Inauguration du nouveau DojoInauguration du nouveau Dojo



En de telles occasions, les autorités administratives, les responsables de l’AZI et les principaux responsables de Kanshoji ont tenus chacun à dire quelques mots ; vous pouvez consulter leur discours ci-dessous :

Le président de l’AZI, Dokan Pierre Crépon :

« Il y a dix années, un petit groupe de personnes réunies autour de Taiun Faure décidait de s’installer en ce lieu. Cette installation se fit grâce à ce mélange d’effort et d’abandon qui caractérise la pratique de la Voie, soutenue par la foi dans le Dharma, la bienveillance du révérend Dônin Minamizawa et la bénédiction du Bouddha. […] » Lire plus

Madam Laurence Béguin, Deputy Prefect, Dordogne:

« […] Your successful implementation means that you are now well integrated in the community of La Coquille and Périgord Vert.

Your presence is the expression of the principle of secularism, which is not the negation of religion. Secularism is acceptance and openness, protection and tolerance; it unfolds in three dimensions: neutrality, freedom of religion and conscience, and pluralism . […] »

Hosetsu Laure Scemama, vice-présidente de l’AZK :

[…] Le dojo est le cœur du monastère. C’est dans cette salle que nous pratiquons zazen, la méditation sans objet. Chacun est seul face à lui-même, mais en même temps, avec tous les autres. Le reste du temps, nous pratiquons et nous vivons tous ensemble, seul et avec les autres.

Dans toutes les traditions, la vie monacale est régie par des règles, mais ces règles, dans le zen, ne s’appuient pas sur une doctrine, elles émergent du principe que « la religion juste est celle qui permet aux hommes de vivre en paix les uns avec les autres ».Lire plus

Taiun Jean-Pierre Faure, the abbot of the monastery :

« Since the birth of mankind, we have been moving forward, overcoming crisis. The crisis we’re going through now is not just economic and social; it is a crisis of the human mind. The way we will respond to it cannot be only scientific or technological, and even less ideological. It will have to involve a revolution of the mind. André Malraux, who in his way was a visionary, said: “The 21st century will be spiritual, or will not be.”

We must pay great attention to the mind with which we deal with situations, look for new solutions, and adapt to change. Whether change is out of our control or the result of our choices, we must not fear it. What we must fear is our incapacity to adapt to it. The mind that enables us to adapt is a mind that clings to nothing, that is not rigid. It is a fresh, vast and free mind.

That mind does not oppose scientific knowledge. It has nothing to do with dogmatic and repressive opinions, it does not need asceticism or sacrifice…

It is a mind cleansed of selfishness and of wrong points of view, a mind with which we can feel empathy for all beings, understanding that our life is neither different nor separate from that of others. A mind that is free from dogmas, attachments and preconceived ideas opens us to others and lets us see reality as it is, assess it correctly and act wisely.

A zen monk is not someone special. He practices in all his activities, which are the activities of all human beings. What is different is the mind with which he does things: wholeheartedly, as they must be done, without expecting a selfish satisfaction.

It is urgent that we bring that mind into our life, into the way we think, the way we see things, the way we act.

That is how the practice of zen is universal, how it is relevant for modern societies in all their diversity.»