For the Benefit of all Beings

100 Hände – gelebte Verbundenheit” (1000 hands – interconnection in action) is an association founded by our sangha in order to bundle our various socially engaged projects under one roof.

We are currently focusing our work on our housing project “Die Freyung”
more information can be found here.

My first teacher in our lineage, Kaikyo Roby Roshi, firmly believed that everyone is a bodhisattva. I also believe this. Bodhisattva translates to “enlightened being”. They are symbols of virtues, archetypes and much more on our spiritual path. The most popular bodhisattva in Zen Buddhism is Avalokithesvara, “Kannon” in Japanese, which translates to “he who hears the suffering of the world.” He is the symbol of unlimited compassion.

In traditional Japanese, the word for all-encompassing, unlimited compassion is DAIJIHI (大慈悲), after which we have named our Sangha.
In a commentary on the chapter Shobogenzo Kannon (published in the official magazine of the Sotoshu Shumuchu, the Dharma Eye # 45, March 2020), Okumura Roshi explains “Daijihi” in more detail. The article is available for download here:

Lecture on Shobogenzo Kannon (German)

When we practice in the mind before evaluative distinctions, before we divide the world into good and evil, before our habitual energies and patterns begin to take hold and we begin to delineate, before a gap is created between us and what is out there – when we sense that all things are interconnected, perhaps we can glimpse the meaning of all-embracing, unlimited compassion.

Sharing this practice with others, for the benefit of all beings, is a great way to integrate one’s practice more into everyday life. No matter where, starting in our closest neighborhood, or in a nursing home, hospital, as a reading mentor in a school, in homeless facilities; spending time with people with disabilities, teaching our language to refugees, wherever or however support is needed at the moment, we just do it. In these constellations, one can create spaces in which one can actually pause in this spirit before evaluations, one does not have to immediately create classifications that are then immediately followed by decisions. Here the true reality can unfold fully and we can grow beyond ourselves!