Earlier this month, Kuzan Peter Schireson and Rinso Ed Sattizahn went through the dharma transmission ceremony with their teacher, Chikudo Lew Richmond, in the Soto Zen lineage of the late Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. In an article published at Sweeping Zen, Schireson said this about his teacher:
“I’ve worked closely with Lew for about five years now, so there’s lots to thank him for, but the one thing I must say is this: if it not for Lew, I really don’t know if I would have ordained as a priest and completed my training in the Suzuki Roshi lineage.”
“His kindness, insights, and Vimalakirti style of embodying the Dharma encouraged me to deepen my practice in ways I hadn’t envisioned,” Schireson continued. “He helped me understand that ordaining as a priest was not about robes, the outward formalities, or the archetypal aura that I associated with the role. That the essence of priest practice was the practice of love and compassion, from the inside out. I came to understand that I could ordain, practice, and teach as myself. For that I am deeply and especially grateful.”
For more on this story, please see the original article at Sweeping Zen.