Yesterday morning (Sunday, October 13th) Lane took Abbot Steve to the emergency room because of fever and inflammation on his legs. After being assessed he was admitted into the hospital.
The medical staff found infection in his legs which they are treating with antibiotics, and also blood clots in his legs which they are treating with blood thinners.
This morning his heart began beating in an irregular pattern which they are treating and monitoring closely. Abbot Steve’s heart has been working very hard as a response to the intense pain he has been experiencing. They are attempting to control the pain in order to give him more ease and lessen the workload on his heart. He is now receiving both oxygen and intravenous fluids because he is having difficulty getting a full breath of air and absorbing fluids.
Abbot Steve told me that it is a very good thing to be in the hospital at this time because they are best able to monitor and treat all these health concerns.
He asked me to again mention that all of your questions and well wishes should come to me.
Abbot Steve remains grateful for all of your support and well wishes. Most importantly he feels a tremendous sense of gratitude for his current ability to stick with his body’s reactions to this condition moment by moment.
(Central Abbot’s Assistant)
Tonight Dan Welch, Ed Sattizahn, Lew Richmond, Norman Fischer, Edward Brown, and I had dinner and we missed seeing you and were concerned about you and we’re all sending our love and prayers for your well being.
Sending love to you…..
Dear Abbot Steve,
You made a profound impact on me during one of your visits to the Austin Zen Center. You told a story about preparing pancakes for your daughters. You demonstrated giving your full attention to them. For some reason, floodgates opened in me and I think I cried off and on the whole weekend. I am moved by your ability to give your body this same kind of full attention. This is a gift not only to yourself but to everyone else who reads this special website. Much love to you and your family and all who know you well, and to all who are reading here.
Prayers for grace and comfort from the community of St. Gregory of Nyssa: may Steve and all who love him feel God’s presence near in this time.
Dear Abbot Steve,
I am remembering you vividly and am grateful for that opening spring wildflower hiking weekend with you at Tassajara when I first got to feel your presence and care. That moment I slipped crossing the creek and your hand reached for mine and pulled me out, both of us laughing, I signed on right then for grief and loss. I know your brave heart and practice are carrying you, breath by precious breath, as all of us who love you are.
Steve, I am sending prayers that you may be at ease in body and mind. I am also chanting the Enmei for you internally throughout the day…as I meet each day with my hospice patients, I am continually reminded of the impermanence, and preciousness, of our brief existence and am deeply grateful for this teaching. You are also continuing to teach us all…each life continues to be of purpose and meaning even when coming to a close. Thank you for all you have given and continue to give to us all and to the Dharma. Bowing deeply, Kathryn Stark
I am holding you in my heart as I chant for your wellbeing and was so happy to hear from Mary (at the Elders’ Council meeting) that your pain level has dropped significantly. Please know that you are surrounded by love and gratitude from all of us.
Much love (and hugs) from all of us,
In health our practice is so simple and transformative, but at the same time it’s always seemed to me to be somewhat optional– a choice we make to practice. But when I got sick with cancer a few years back, and life and death hung in the balance, I discovered the choiceless side of practice, where life felt like it was simply manifesting though me. So grateful for the ability, honed over years of sitting, to not get trapped in my thoughts. NO time or space for equivocation.. So when you say you’ve been feeling gratitude to be with what your body is doing, I can relate.
Moat importantly, I want to let you know what a great inspiration you have been to me in both sickness and health. May you be relieved from all suffering.
God be with you, Abbot!
Like many, I have been following your difficult recent weeks.
While your situation is unique, I have strong feeling. I was diagnosed with cancer (multiple myeloma) in August 2010. I am still in remission, received ordination from my teacher, Edward Brown, two years ago, and continue my life to live the Bodhisattva vows. Strangely, that has been a great blessing.
Holding you in my heart, I have great gratitude for you and your profound kindness. Meeting you eight years ago for the first time at Tassajara when I was preparing for lay ordination I realized something special regarding the simple gift of presence. Thank you for that. Like many others, I am grateful.
All of us are making our own special effort to continue what you have embodied.
Many prayers for you, your family and all suffering beings.
Sending lots of light and love from across the ocean. Your ‘gentle farmer’s presence’ has been so reassuring and encouraging to me in the past, and I’ve never told you…thank you!
Sitting with you all,
Dear Myogen Steve,
Your strong ,shining practice is chipping away at my defended heart and turning me again to continuous practice . I am so grateful. May you be free from suffering !
Gassho, much love,