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The following is an excerpt from this issue:

Q: How to find a balance between living a life of anything goes and life with a bit of discipline, but not pretending to be in a monastery?

You have some experience in a monastery, yes, and so you can make some comparison. For the monastic practice, in a monastery, it’s all part of daily life, it’s routine, it goes on and on and on. Of course, sometimes there is a special occasion ceremony, a monthly activity, or annual activities, but basically it’s, you know, the same routine. Nothing exciting. (laughs). The only time monks get excited is at tea time or evening meal time—not so much oryoki type meal—when some treat or some sweet comes in! But outside of the monastery, sometimes it is very difficult to find a routine, establish a routine. It helps if you have a job, or school, or something that becomes a focal point. You need to have some order or some kind of regularity in order to take care of that. You cannot stay up too late, although you want to have a party with friends or something, because you have to be awake, at school or at work, and so you take care of that.

But it would be very different, very difficult if you didn’t have a job or you didn’t go to school and you had a lot of time. If you have a lot of time and lot of money maybe it’s all right (laughs)… (Continued on page 1.)

Jikishoan Tokozan