2022 Rohatsu Sesshin
2022 Rohatsu Sesshin

2022 Rohatsu Sesshin

December 6, 2022 @ 7:30 pm – December 11, 2022 @ 8:30 am America/Chicago Timezone
Great Plains Zen Center
W7762 Falk Rd
Monroe, WI 53566
Full-Time, In-Person: $280 (Members, $240)
(608) 325-6248

Our 2022 Rohatsu Sesshin takes place Tuesday night, December 6 through Sunday morning, December 11.  There will be instruction in zendo procedures on Tuesday evening at 6 PM for those needing it.  The formal retreat will begin at 7:30 PM that night.

This important sesshin commemorates the Enlightenment of Shakyamuni Buddha, celebrated on Dec. 8  as Bodhi Day in our tradition. It is a time to deeply investigate the grave matter – the question “who am I ?” Regardless of what challenges we experience in our lives and communities and in the world itself, there is still this question that we alone can address.

Upon his enlightenment, Shakyamuni Buddha was challenged by the delusive voice of Mara, demanding proof of the authenticity of his experience. In response, he touched the earth with his right hand, asking her to bear witness to the truth he had realized, the fundamental non-separateness (selflessness) of all things. Please come and touch the ground of the Great Earth, confirming this truth for yourself.

The retreat will include zazen (seated meditation), kinhin (walking meditation),  services — including a special Bodhi Day Service and an ordination ceremony for Myosen —  talks, daily self care periods and vegetarian meals . Dokusan (face to face meeting with Myoyu Roshi) will be offered during this retreat.  The retreat will end on Sunday morning, December 11 with the Gate of Sweet Nectar Ceremony.

On Saturday morning, December 10 at 10:30, we will have Tokudo (priest ordination) for Bonnie Myosen Nadzam.  Myosen has completed the requisite time as a Postulant Priest and on December 10, she will take vows to become a full Zen Buddhist priest.  Myosen leads the Northfield Zazen group, an affiliate of GPZC.  Northfield Zazen meets at 9:30 am on Sunday mornings for two sitting periods, kinhin, and check-in, and for monthly precept circles (discussion of one precept per month, using Council for the discussion). Participants are encouraged to attend retreats and other events and training in Monroe. For more detail about meeting location in Northfield, MN or with any other questions, please contact Myosen.

Please come and show your support for Myosen in this important step for her and the broader sangha.  You are welcome (and encouraged) to come for this event even if you are not participating in the rest of the sesshin.  If you are coming for the ceremony and planning to stay for the lunch, please RSVP here so that we have an accurate meal count.

All COVID precautions remain in effect:

  • Anyone staying overnight must take a rapid antigen test (home test is fine) within 24 hours prior to arriving at this sesshin and only attend in person if the result is negative.  
  • We are requiring that anyone attending in person be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and require proof of vaccination. We strongly recommend also having the available booster shots, but do not require them.
  • Anyone with a medical contraindication for the COVID vaccine (or booster, should we require them in the future) can provide proof of a negative COVID test within 72 hours prior to attendance in lieu of the vaccine.
  • Participants will be seated in the zendo at least 6 feet apart and asked to maintain distance during kinhin, services, and lunch.
  • Masks must be worn indoors except when eating, sleeping, or if you are the only person staying in a room and have the door closed. We have very limited single rooms available. If you are uncomfortable sharing a room with others, we’ll let you know what other options are available, such as a motel room.
  • Participants must sit at designated spots for meals and eat in silence.
  • In-person participants must wear N95, KN95 or KF94 grade masks and will be provided with one if they do not bring one.
  • Participants must wash their hands frequently, use hand sanitizer when handling shared equipment and wipe surfaces with disinfectant after use as appropriate.
  • Please do not attend the retreat in person if you are ill and/or have any symptoms (COVID-related or not) that indicate a possible contagious illness.

Scholarships are available for any who need them. As always, we encourage those who are able to donate an additional amount for the retreat to help us keep retreats affordable for everyone. Participants will receive instructions, a detailed schedule, and Zoom access information after registering.  The cost of this retreat is prorated for part time attendance and there are different rates for in person and online participation .  The cost for fulltime in person participation in this retreat is $240 for members, $280 for others.  Prorated amounts for part-time participation are shown on the event registration formTo participate in this event, register no later than Sunday, December 4.  Note that housing is limited, so please register early to guarantee your place at the retreat.  There is no charge for those attending only the tokudo; however, donations are welcomed.