Rev. Koyo S. Kubose

Spicy Popcorn, a remembrance

Oneness Formula, written by Rev. Koyo Kubose


Rev. Koyo S. Kubose was born in Los Angeles, California. After World War II, he relocated to Chicago with his family. He earned a BA from the University of CA at Berkeley, a MA from San Francisco State University, and a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Iowa. He has been on the psychology faculties at the University of North Carolina (Greensboro), University of Hawaii (Honolulu), and University of Wisconsin Center System (Janesville). He went to Japan for three years, and studied Shin Buddhism at the Eastern Buddhist Society at Otani University. He also did meditation practice under Zen masters Uchiyama Kosho of the Soto tradition and Kobori Nanrei of the Rinzai tradition. Upon his return to the US in 1977, Rev. Koyo worked with his father, the Venerable Rev. Gyomay Kubose, a pioneer in the Americanization of Buddhism. From 1983 - 1995, Rev. Koyo served as a minister at the Buddhist Temple of Chicago, which his father established in 1944. Currently, Rev. Koyo is president of BRIGHT DAWN: Institute for American Buddhism, which he established in 1996 to carry on his father's lifework. On April 4, 1998, Rev. Gyomay Kubose officially transmitted his spiritual authority to Rev. Koyo Kubose.

Spicy Popcorn

Having visited the Kubose household on and off for the past couple of years, I was privy to the everyday goings on. For example, when we rented movies, Rev. Koyo would make a huge bowl of spicy popcorn. He adds, with gusto, spices like Texas gunpowder, celery salt, lemon pepper, chili powder, parmesan cheese - just to name a few. Watching him create spicy popcorn made me realize that he always seems to spice up "ordinary moments". I remember playing craps with Rev. Koyo, Rev. Gyomay, Kanon and Robert in the corner of their living room. Never having played before, I thought throwing dice would be boring, especially since we weren't betting real money. But that day, Rev. Koyo made craps the most fun game ever. Each throw of the dice called for an enthusiastic comment, and if anyone rolled a 7, he'd yell out loud! We couldn't help but to yell too. Each day, I'd notice countless ordinary moments that Rev. Koyo mindfully jazzed up. Being apart of BRIGHT DAWN has taught me that nothing is ever truly boring, and that plain popped corn can easily be converted to spicy popcorn, if you add the right spices. -Shauna Kubose Fleuridor

Oneness Formula
by Rev. Koyo Kubose

U = 2I + 2A = E

U = Right Understanding
2I's = Impermanence and Interdependency
2A's = Acceptance and Appreciation
E = Enlightened Living

In this formula, Oneness in life consists of Right Understanding which is the realization of the reality of Interdependency and Impermanence. To the extent these truths are experienced, the spiritual qualities of Acceptance and Appreciation are deepened, leading to what can be called Enlightened Living.

The Way of Oneness formula is intended to be universal. Although the formula comes out of a general Buddhist perspective, it is expressed in a way that hopefully makes it accessible to Buddhists of any sect, to followers of other religions, or even to those with no particular religious orientation. Persons from any tradition or approach could use their own terminology and illustrations to elaborate on the different aspects of the formula.

It should also be mentioned that of course life cannot be reduced to a formula. The Way of Oneness formula is simply a handy way to express some basic teachings about life. It is a nice summary that makes it easier to remember such teachings. To remember the teachings means to live them in one's everyday life. This is the most important thing.

Just for fun, note that the formula contains all the vowels of the alphabet.