Thursday, May 31, 2007

Turning the Wheel

Thank you for the invitation to contribute to this blog Christina.

I have always wanted to continue the Dharma in cyberspace.

So, here it goes,




May our practice benefit all beings, that we may know true happiness and be free of suffering ever dwelling in the great equanimity that is free from attachment and aversion.


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Retreat Photos

Here are a couple of group photos from Sunday after the retreat. Thanks to all who participated.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Practice Updates

On Friday, May 18, at the Chapel of Mercy Hospital, from 7-8 a.m., we will have morning practice with Linc Rhodes. This will consist of 108 prostrations, the Morning Bell Chant, and a short period of sitting meditation. All are welcome.

Regular Saturday morning practice is CANCELLED on Saturday May 19 for the retreat. For more information about the retreat, please scroll down.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Correct Situation, Correct Function, Correct Action

This afternoon, taking a break from raking the remnants of oak leaves from the front lawn, I heard a child cry out, followed by muffled sobbing. I stood up from my seat on the porch and quickly scanned the area. There on the sidewalk, near a neighbor's driveway was a boy sprawled near a bicycle. The front wheel was off and the boy was hugging himself, trying desperately not to cry out again. I moved quickly toward him, hunched down to assess his injuries: banged knees, elbows and chin. I introduced myself, and asked him for his name. "Daniel," he managed, just above a whisper. I asked if I could call someone for him, he shook his head empahtically: No! I asked if I could take a look at his knees - they were swelling up quickly. I offered ice, water, a phone. He declined. I asked if I could assist him getting home, again he declined with a desperate shake of his head. He seemed to be fighting back tears. I watched his face grimaced in pain.

Then I understood completely. More awful than the physical pain, more humiliating than the embarrassment at the kindness of this stranger before him, was the awesome fear of parental rebuke.

After a moment, I told him quickly about a spill I took from a bike at age 14, the broken nose, the knocked out front tooth. The anger from my parents all the way to the hospital.

Then I asked how I could help. He started to shake his head again, but then brightened with an idea: he asked if I had any tools. I asked if he could stand. He did so, wincing and tried to pick up the bike. I intervened and handed him the front wheel. I picked up the bike and we walked slowly to our porch. I was glad to see he could walk. I went inside to get a toolbox A few minutes later, I found the problem - the hex nut on one side kept slipping as I tightened it. I told him he'd need to get the bolt on the hub replaced. He then suggested a hammer, and as I realized the source of the problem (that he had most likely applied a hammer to this bolt) I recognized all the times I had been shamed as a child for similar incidents of clever, but ultimately self defeating ingenuity. So I simply explained what happens when one hammers a bolt - the threads strip and it makes it impossible to tighten the hex nut. So this bolt wouldn't hold the wheel in place for long, and the same thing would happen, again - only next time he might land on his face or head or worse. He asked me how far I thought he could get before it happened again. I stated, I didn't think he could go very fast or very far, and he'd be better off walking the bike home. He thanked me, and as he was wheeling the bike away I said, "Just pay it forward. You do something nice for someone else today."

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Public Talk by Linc Rhodes

  • Manhattan Public Library Auditorium, corner of Poyntz & Juliette. Free.
  • Friday, May 18, 6 p.m.
The sun shines everywhere. Why does a cloud obscure it?

Meditation Retreat with Linc Rhodes

  • Saturday, May 19, 6:00 a.m. to Sunday, May 20, 12:00 p.m.
  • Deep Creek Community Center. Email for directions.
  • Full retreat: $60 general public / $50 Kwan Um School of Zen Members
  • Saturday only: $50 / $40
  • Sunday only: $30 / $25
  • Scholarships available.
  • Discount for early registration (before May 11).
  • meditation instruction
  • meals
  • private interview(s) with Linc.
To register, please email

Spring comes, the grass grows by itself


All practice is held in the Chapel of Mercy Regional Health Center, which is located on the second floor of Mercy Hospital on the corner of College & Kimball (across from the football stadium), Manhattan, Kansas.

Tuesday evening

  • 6:30 - 6:50 Special chanting
  • 7:00 - 8:00 Chanting and sitting meditation
Saturday morning
  • 7:30 - 8:30 Bowing, chanting and sitting meditation (we usually go out to breakfast together after practice).

There is no charge for practice. Please wear loose comfortable clothing. We prefer that you do not wear shorts. Bring a cushion, if you have one.

Coming for the first time? Try to arrive ten minutes early so we can greet you and orient you to our forms.

Questions? Please email us at

Welcome to Tall Grass Zen

Tall Grass Zen was founded in 1999 by Christina Hauck and Margaret Wheeler. Our vision is to bring the teaching of Zen Master Seung Sahn to Manhattan, Kansas. This is our first effort at hosting a webpage--please let us know what you think!

In the Dharma,

Christina & Margaret