Our Vision and Our Mission
We are a gathering of Soto Zen
Buddhists. Our teachers are both
ordained and lay. We have inherited disciplines from Japan and China, which we cherish. We are seeking ways to keep them alive and purposeful here, today.
We also seek egalitarian forms of community that are relevant to the 21st century, while at the same time bowing to the wisdom of tradition
Recognizing the suffering of the world caused by greed, hatred and
delusion in its various manifestations (racism, sexism, ignorance,
inequality), we seek to transform our hearts, our communities, and our
society. There are practices of body and mind and heart that open us
up to the deep truths of who we are and how we are connected, each
of us to the other. We need to engage them as best we can. They involve learning practices of silence, studying the wisdom of the elders,
listening, weighing, and finding out for ourselves what it is they point to. They also involve being clear about who we are within society, what our privileges and biases are, and acting in responsible and ethical ways.
We are a community of both lay and ordained Buddhists, united by a
common practice of zazen, or Zen meditation. We offer shikantaza, just sitting, as well as koan introspection, the path of words and freedom within the constraints of our human condition. We offer evening sits, longer one-day sits, and multiple-day long intensive retreats. We offer chanting services, ceremonies, talks, classes, and other programming.
And, inspired by the great insights of our radical interdependence, we
are moved to act in our communities through outreach, activism, and
Shakyamuni Buddha said, “Spiritual friends are the entirety of the holy
life.” Seeing clearly and responding to suffering takes bravery,
compassion, and support. Manifesting this is our project. What we offer is a community of spiritual friendship.
We hope you can join us.