The second year is considered the daojin postulancy year. The daojin vows are introduced as a focus of personal study during this year, with special attention given to the spirit and expression of service. The requirements for the second year are the same as for the first year. The weekend sessions with the teachers and training staff are dedicated to the exploration of the vows and to topics relevant to the daojin path.
Third and Fourth Years
These are the daojin novitiate years—a time to clarify students’ dedication to the vows and their capacity to spend the necessary time at the Monastery or the Temple. The requirements are as follows:
• Daojin must study the five daojin vows and engage them in all aspects of their lives.
• They need to spend at least thirty days in residency at the Monastery or the Temple. Residency can be done in intervals of various lengths, as short as a day at a time and it can include one full-week sesshin that simultaneously fulfills part of the MRO student requirements. During residency, daojin will be expected to serve the Three Treasures in the same capacity as monastics of the Order.
• They must also spend ten out of the twelve Saturdays coinciding with the Introduction to Zen retreats at the Monastery, to help take care of guests and participate in ongoing meetings with the teachers. Time spent in this way does not count toward the residential requirements.
• Daojin must engage in an active, ongoing project for the Monastery or the Temple and take full responsibility for developing it over time. Projects should be discussed and agreed on with the teachers before the beginning of the novitiate period.
• Novices will participate in a simple entry ceremony.
• While at the Monastery or Temple, novices will wear gray samu-e and black rakusu (with daojin emblem) to identify them.
Full Daojin Ordination
Upon completion of the four years of training and having fulfilled all the program requirements, novices can petition for full ordination. Once accepted, daojin will go through an ordination ceremony.
Activities and Requirements of Ordained Daojin
number of days that daojin need to be at the Monastery or Temple. This amounts to 36.5 days per year (or ten percent) offered at the novices’ discretion, but must include one full-week sesshin. Once ordained, daojin receive individualized training and instead of participating in the training sessions for new applicants, they will dedicate their time to serving the sangha at the Monastery or the Temple