After three months of living there, I moved out of the San Francisco Zen Center City Center for most of the month of December to live at my friend David’s house. I did that in order to have the time to apply to graduate schools in clinical psychology – there was no way I could complete and submit all of my applications, do my programming job, and also participate in the full weekly schedule of meditation, services, and work at the Zen Center. I left my stuff in my room at City Center and continued to pay rent there, and I occasionally dropped back in to meditate.
Applying to graduate school is something that I have thought about doing for four years, and I feel satisfied and accomplished that I have now done so. The applications took a huge amount of time, attention to detail, and favor asking (“Could you please write me a letter of recommendation?”, “Could you please proof-read this?”).
Once my applications were complete, having enjoyed living in San Francisco for the first time with more freedom concerning when I went to bed early and when I stayed up late to socialize, I almost didn’t move back in to Zen Center. And, once I did more back, I made finding a new place to live where I could live with friends a high priority. But, I did not end up moving out, and, in the time since, I’ve settled into feeling happy to be living at the Zen Center.
[Me in the central courtyard of City Center]
I’ve found ways to sneak doing what I want to do in to little cracks of time. I have also come to feel less stressed about skipping scheduled periods of meditation or services. I find that I am allowed to skip out on events at City Center more than I was allowed when I was living at Green Gulch – I think that there is the recognition by the senior staff/priests that this is life in the big city.
I have attended yoga class three times in the last nine days, and my body feels vibrant and alive. I find it pleasant that I can live here and still fit yoga classes in. Also, there are now four straight more-or-less single women under thirty-five living here, while there were none when I first moved in. Their pleasant presence changes the vibe here at the temple by quite a bit. Also, if we’re really going to be honest, it should be known that they all moved in because of me.
Anyway, I have come to feel friendly, or at least comfortable, with most of the other residents and long-time regular non-residential students. I’ve been living here for five months, it’s my home. The beautiful building is a powerhouse of good energy, good chi.