Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin, Oct. 27-30
Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin, Oct. 27-30

Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin, Oct. 27-30

Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin

Bodhidharma likely practiced in caves in these mountains near Shaolin Temple.

Our Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin takes place Thursday night, October 27 through Sunday morning, October 30. You are invited to come and sit together for the entire retreat or any part of it.

Sitting-only retreats, called “Honoring the Way of Zazen” retreats, originated as a tribute to the legendary Zen teacher, Bodhidharma, who often met inquiries from others with only resolute sitting. This retreat offers an opportunity to go deep into zazen practice, period after period, with our own faith, questioning and determination to guide us. As the air begins to cool and the prospects of winter’s chill and snow emerge again, we are invited to settle into the same resolute practice, renewing our vows to accomplish the Buddha Way and yet not clinging to any ideas of how that should be done. Simply practicing wholeheartedly moment after moment is enough.

Bodhidharma by Ekyo Maezumi

Honoring the Way of Zazen Sesshin is an intensive retreat with periods of zazen (sitting meditation) alternating with 10 minute periods of walking meditation throughout the day. As with our other retreats, there will be silent meals, a work period and time for rest. However, unlike other retreats, there will be no talks, no chanting services, no dokusan (face to face) instruction with the teacher. Sitting on the Buddha’s seat, we immerse ourselves in our practice throughout the day with determination, great faith and great questioning.

Important update:  GPZC now requires that anyone attending in person 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.  

All other COVID precautions remain in effect:

  • 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 booster shot, but do not require it.
  • Anyone with a medical contraindication for the COVID vaccine (or booster, should we require it 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.

Part-time participation will be prorated and 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 different for online and in person participation.  Cost details will be shown on the event registration form. To participate in this event, please complete our Event Registration Form by no later than Monday, October 24.