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.)


August sesshin

August 7-day sesshin is usually the most popular sesshin, so the closing date is 31 May, two months before the sesshin start date of 29 July. It is important to get your application in before the closing date if you want to be sure that it will be considered.


September sesshin

Applications are being accepted for the September 4-day sesshin, which begins on 13 September and will be led by Sante Roshi. Most sesshins are full these days, so it is important to apply by the deadline of 29 August if you want your application to be considered.


October Sesshin

Applications are being accepted for this 7-day sesshin, which runs from 14 to 21 October, led by Sante Roshi. Most sesshins are full these days, so it is important to apply by the deadline of 14 September if you want your application to be considered.

What we offer

Here you can read about our different forms of training and introduction to zen practice.

Intensive Retreats - sesshin

A traditional Japanese Zen retreat, or sesshin, is a period when all non-essential work is put aside and participants engage in 9 or more hours of formal zazen each day. The silent zazen is complemented by a daily lecture (teisho) and 2 or 3 private meetings each day with the teacher (dokusan). The intensive nature of sesshin allows one to put aside all workaday concerns and focus strongly on unifying the mind, with the aim of seeing into one’s true nature.

We offer nine sesshins per year. Five of these are seven days long, and four are four days long. If you have not been to a sesshin here before, we would like you to contact us by mail first.

Click here for a pdf of the 2017 calendar

Click here for a pdf of the sesshin schedule

Click here for a pdf of the sesshin application

Summer Retreat

As well as sesshin, once a year in June we hold a seven-day retreat with a lighter schedule. This retreat is particularly suitable for people who are relatively new to Zen.

Residential Zen training

Intensive Zen retreat, or sesshin, is one form of Zen practice. Between sesshins, another form of practice is offered – Zen training. Instead of focussing so strongly on formal zazen, we move from the base of our daily meditation practice into staying aware and present during all activities, whether working, socialising, eating or playing.

The training schedule typically includes five hours of formal sitting each day, four hours of work and several hours of unstructured time. Dokusan (a private meeting with the teacher) is offered regularly to enable students to receive individual guidance on their practice. One day a week has no formal schedule. If you would like to come and stay at Zengården, please phone us during our office hours to discuss your visit with us.

Introduction to Zen

If you are new to Zen, we arrange with you to complete an introduction to Zen practice. You are taken through the practical aspects of Zen practice, including sitting postures and meditation practices and there is plenty of opportunity to ask any questions you have about Zen theory and practice. The introduction can be done either before you arrive at Zengården (at one of the city centres affiliated with Zengården: Glasgow, Stockholm, Helsinki, Lund, Göteborg and Tampere.), or upon arrival.

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