UPCOMING

2017-03-15

March sesshin

Applications are being accepted for the March 4-day sesshin, to be led by Kanja Roshi. Most sesshins are full these days, so it is important to apply by the deadline of 1 March if you want your application to be considered.

2017-03-22

Spring Ango period

This year, we are trialing a short Ango period in the spring, from 22 March to 7 April. There is more sitting and less work, and a long break each afternoon for extra sitting or walks and yoga. Email us for more details

2017-04-14

Easter sesshin

The April 7-day sesshin this year starts on Good Friday and will be led by Kanja Roshi. It is likely that this sesshin will be fully booked, so please apply on time if you want your application to be considered. The deadline is 14 March.

2017-06-03

Summer Retreat

The annual summer retreat is coming up (3 to 10 June) and will be led by Kanja Roshi. The schedule is less intense and the format more flexible than sesshin. People on their first retreat should be here at the start, other participants may arrive on any day. All may choose how many days to participate. This retreat is often very full, so please apply by 3 May.

2017-06-28

Swedish beginners' retreat

This retreat is from 28 June to 2 July inclusive and is in Swedish. Please refer to the Swedish pages for more information.

2017-07-14

Beginners' retreat

This summer, people who are interested in experiencing the Zen way of life for a few days (from 14 to 18 July) will have the opportunity to do so at Zengården from 14 to 18 July. No previous experience is needed. The retreat will be in English and will be led by Roshi Sante Poromaa, a Zen teacher who has over 30 years' experience of Zen. Please email us for more details or an application form. (Members can also apply online.)

Introduction

Welcome! Zengården is a Zen Buddhist retreat centre and full-time Zen training temple located in rural Sweden two hours west of Stockholm. Beginners and experienced practitioners alike can come here to learn and practise zazen (Zen meditation), participate in retreats and experience Zen training under the guidance of fully qualified Zen teachers. Because people from all over the world come here, instruction is given in English.

What is Zen?

The word Zen comes from the Sanskrit word "dhyana" which means concentration and absorption. In other words, meditation. The central aspect of Zen practice is sitting meditation, or “zazen”. In zazen, we gradually train our minds to be more attentive and present. The mind also learns to function in a new way, to let go of old habits, ideas and views about the world, and to be fully present, letting everything be born again in each moment.

Through the practice of zazen, we can break through our illusions and see reality as it truly is, beyond all concepts.

In Zen we say that everything is practice and that practice can be done in any situation, that you should not be stuck in, or cling to, the notion of zazen being the only way to practise. On the other hand, we should not fool ourselves into thinking that a strong sitting practice is not needed in Zen. But it is in our daily life that we bring the practice to fruition, through attending to each moment and being aware of our responsibility for the world and its inhabitants.

The relationship between the teacher and the student is an essential element of Zen practice. The teacher guides students along the path using both one-on-one instruction (in Japanese, dokusan) and lectures given to the student group (in Japanese, teisho).

Zen has always been influenced by, and adapted to, the culture and the circumstances of each new country in which it has appeared. Modern western Zen for example, has witnessed women coming to play a much more prominent role both as students and teachers than was possible in ancient Asian cultures. But the Zen that is practised here in the west also has deep roots in the Chinese and Japanese Zen traditions, and the essence of Zen is beyond both time and culture.

Zengården   |   e-mail: enquiries@zentraining.org   |   phone: +46 (0) 76 1495374, +46 (0) 72 2257631