Edward Moreno

At 94, Ed Moreno has accumulated nearly seventy years of service in media- broadcast, newsprint, and magazines. Ed has received a number of accolades for his work, as writer, editor and translator. His torrid love affair with Japanese culture began in 1951 and it seems it will never cool off. He is currently writing a column on Japanese-Nikkei cultural and historical topics for the “Newsette,” the monthly organ of the East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center, in West Covina, CA. Before its demise, The East magazine (Tokyo) published some of his original works.  He also writes for “Transactions, the Journal of the prestigious Asiatic Society of Japan”

Updated May 2015

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Chasing Śākyamuni - Part 4 of 4

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Writing on the Heart 

Thanks to the interviews with her consociates, Dr. Arai found numerous rituals, used by the interviewees, on their own interpretations of the Fourth Noble Truth that there is a path that leads to the end of suffering. Consociate Ms. Honda’s preferred the ritual of 写経 shakyo1, or sutra copying.

In the Nihongi, we find the Buddhist practice of shakyo early in the long history of Japan. It started officially during Emperor Shomu’s era (701-756). At the behest of Komyo, his pious and devoted Empress, Shomu created the Office for Copying ...

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Chasing Śākyamuni - Part 3 of 4

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Bringing Zen Home 

—This book took root, Arai says, on December 18, 1996, the day my mother died. After months of listening to the whir of the oxygen machine, a vacuum of silence filled her bedroom. Even though I had known she would die, when I stood looking at the threshold of life and death, I felt as if any wrong move would send us off into an abyss of despair… How was I to insure my mother’s passage through this perilous transition?

Frantic for some clues about what to do, what would be the proper ...

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Chasing Śākyamuni - Part 2 of 4

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Arai’s circuitous route to find the Buddha began at Kalamazoo, a “Christian-centered college,” where her major interest became Ethics. Coming from a church “very culturally activist, very concerned about social issues,” college was wonderful for the friendships, but disquieting for the practice of “Christianity” among those in the “Christian Fellowship” group on campus. In a world so complex and diverse as the current, holding to a “this is rightthat is wrong,” position was unsettling. Arai began asking a lot of questions, which made people quite uncomfortable;

“…they wanted to insure that I didn’t lose ...

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Chasing Śākyamuni - Part 1 of 4

In the beginning…

To: Dr. Paula K Arai, PhD ・ Associate Professor and Section Head of Religious Studies. Louisiana State University.
Subject: Inquiry

Dear Dr. Arai: Please excuse me for taking the liberty of contacting you without having been formally introduced. I’ve read with delight your recent book Bringing Zen Home, which impressed me enormously, since you deal with the issue of Zen from many brand-new and exciting angles. Your findings about Zen-at-home seem an ideal topic for a column; I’d like to respectfully request your permission to quote in it from both Bringing Zen Home and Women Living ...

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Every time the Center [East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center] had a big celebration, but especially at the Installation ceremonies, she would tell me, her lovely eyes wide open:

—Aren’t these children marvelous? Don’t you wish every American kid were like them? Look at how they take care of the “seniors,” especially. I wish I could do something for them…

She went without fulfilling this special wish of her heart, but I just couldn’t forget it; and that’s how the Reiko Moreno Scholarship came to life… The small award, one per year, would be integrated ...

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