Pockley in 2017
|Title||rōshi / Shakya|
|Lineage||57th patriarch of Linji school|
|Notable work(s)||Mediteren in de trein (Panta Rhei, 2017)|
|Teacher||Koro Kaisan Miles|
|Predecessor||Koro Kaisan Miles (Fǎ Lohng Huo Hong Fǎ Shakya)|
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He was the first British person, and the first European, to be added to the lineage of Jy Ding, a move made by his American teacher Koro Kaisan Miles to fulfil Xuyun's original request to Jy Ding to spread the Linji school of Chán to the West. Following ordination at Open Gate Zendo, Washington State, 2009 under the tutelage of Koro Kaisan Miles, Michael:
- established a zendō (Chinese: Chántáng) close to his home in Oxfordshire,
- became among the first, if not the first, to take Linji Chan to Kenya, serving Zen Kenya as locum zazen leader and rural outreach worker at Lake Victoria,
- was senior Linji cleric in the Czech Republic, setting up Prague Rinzai Zendo,
- established the Tumbleweed Zen sangha in Oxfordshire in 2017,
- taught Zen Buddhism as Visiting Instructor at Somerville College, Oxford. (2017 - 2019),
- taught Zen to thousands of children, sometimes for whole schools at a time (for example, Bedales, in 2011).
As such, he can be said to have had a foundational impact on bringing a unique school of Línjì Chán Buddhism to Europe and Kenya.
(In part because of some training in Japanese Buddhism prior to his 2009 ordination, he has tended to use the Japanese form of his dharma name: Kaishin Inshu rōshi. The 'Inshu' part is the dharma name, which in Chinese is Yín Shí, 印時. He has so far named four successors.)
Early life and education
He was raised in Hampshire and schooled at Marlborough House School and Haileybury College. He studied for a Bachelor of Arts in Politics at Durham University in 1989, a Postgraduate Certificate in Education at Homerton College, Cambridge, in 1992, and an Master of Arts (Ed.) in the Philosophy of Education at the Institute of Education, University of London, 1996. Finally, he attained a Postgraduate Diploma in Buddhist Studies at University of Sunderland, 2007.
After brief service in the British Army as a 2nd Lieutenant, he became a bookseller, a property manager, and a kibbutznik at the Kibbutz in Shefayim. He then taught at several schools, including Státní Jazyková Škola in Prague (1993-4), The Dragon School, Oxford (2006–11), Kenton College, Nairobi (2011), Turning Point Trust, Kibera (2012), Masarykovo Klasické Gymnázium, Říčany (2013–14), Univerzita Karlova (1993–94 and 2014–17), Open Gate School, Babice u Říčan (2013–17), St. Joseph's RC Primary School, Oxford (2018), Carfax and Greene's tutorial colleges, Oxford (2017–19) and West Buckland School, Devon (2019 onwards).
From 1993 to 2018 he served as an examiner for the Czech Ministry of Education.
- Pockley, Michael (January 22, 2012). "The Dojin Roku: Zen Outreach in Kenya".
- "World Buddhist Directory - Presented by BuddhaNet.Net". web.archive.org. April 21, 2016.
- "Wayback Machine" (PDF). web.archive.org. April 13, 2019.
- Kaisan, Koro (July 5, 2011). "Drifting Clouds and Flowing Water: Meet Nick Crowther-Wilton".
- "Patrick Muirhead and Michael Pockley letters - National Library of Wales Archives and Manuscripts". archives.library.wales.
- "Wayback Machine" (PDF). web.archive.org. January 12, 2020.
- "Rev. Michael Pockley, MA (Ed.), PG Dip., BA, PGCE". web.archive.org. January 12, 2020.
- The Third Great Balloon Debate
- Mediteren in de trein (Panta Rhei, 2017) (Versions of this book exist in several languages, including English, 'How to Meditate on the Train'. The best known is the Dutch edition; the others are self-published.) Several self-published works exist
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