Sunday, October 6, 2013

Installation of the Shuso

On October 2, 12013, San Francisco Zen Center installed the Shuso for the Fall 2013 Practice Period. This was our first ceremony with an ASL interpreter!  It was a special honor for me to be asked to be Shuso, and the presence of the interpreter began a reconnection with Temple that has been steadily growing in the short week since that ceremony.

I used my memory from past ceremonies and imagined the various gongs, and bells. Although I did not have to imagine the Han being struck, as I was standing next to it. It's sharp energy penetrating to the bones.

There was a period where I stood with my back to the proceedings, and kept peeking around to see if it was time for me to do something yet. My inner teacher just said, "be still - they know you're Deaf and will signal you".

The dialog was intimate, and was a foretaste of the deeper and equal communications that will be possible when my Signing skills improve.

I am most grateful to Zen Center for bravely moving into the unknown, with a Deaf Shuso. I am also grateful to Ari Lathuras, my interpreter, for being willing to take on the daunting challenge of interpreting for a new signer.

"Let us SEE the words of the Shuso..."

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