Affiliate of the
Silent Thunder Order

STOmokuraiLogo transp 100


Zen finds no conflict with science, or the adherents of religious doctrines and practices. While Buddhism differs from other major world faiths, it does not proselytize, and recognizes that spiritual truth is the same for all human beings. There is more commonality than difference between us, and we admire the uniqueness of each world view, including atheism, so please do not hesitate to join us. Most major religions include a contemplative tradition similar in spirit to Zen meditation. No matter how long we have been practicing, we nurture "beginner's mind," regarding each period of meditation as if it were our first.  

We welcome everyone to begin exploration of Zen practice during Newcomers' Workshop. This session focuses on the mechanics of sitting including posture, breath, and attention during meditation. Newcomers are given an opportunity to introduce themselves, talk about their interest in Zen, and ask any questions they may have.

We encourage everyone to attend several Newcomer Workshops. Attendees often find new meaning in hearing the instructions offered by different attendants. 

Newcomers Session is recommended but not required and you may attend any of the regularly scheduled meditation services, especially if you are already experienced with seated meditation. Please arrive on-time and enter the meditation hall (zendo) quietly.

If you have a large group or would like special accommodations (either on-site at the ASZC or a presentation off-site), please contact us in advance (click here for email).

 You may formalize and celebrate your Zen practice at any time by requesting an Initiation Precepts (Jukai) Ceremony. This ceremony marks your involvement as a lay practitioner of Soto Zen Buddhism. Please ask an attendant for details. Discipleship and Priesthood are later training stages offered at the Abbot's discretion. Speak to a Priest or Elliston Roshi for more information.