We are a group of lay practitioners from many walks of life. None of us is sanctioned as a teacher; we make liberal use of teaching materials from Steve Hagen.* While we are serious about cultivating the quality of awareness that arises only in strict stillness, the atmosphere outside of practice periods is relaxed, warm and casual.
Those who participate regularly tend to have a visceral sense, learned by experience, that deep engagement in receptive stillness of body and (eventually) mind helps their life to go better. If you are new to meditation, we encourage you to meditate every day for a month before deciding that meditation is not for you. It is also helpful to explore a variety of communities and practice styles; many people find that one style of meditation suits them better than others. Most of the “regulars” here have practiced in a variety of traditions before choosing the bare-bones, “just-sitting” practice of Zazen.
The senior members of the group have studied personally with a number of teachers including Steve Hagen, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Dai-En Bennage, Jan Chozen Bays and several teachers at Zen Mountain Monastery.
While the group is not a formal affiliate of Dharma Field or Zen Mountain Monastery, many of us have attended, and continue to attend, sesshins and other programs at Dharma Field and/or Zen Mountain Monastery.
*Steve Hagen teaches at Dharma Field Meditation and Learning Center in Minneapolis, MN. He has studied Buddhism since 1967 including 15 years with Dainin Katagiri Roshi, from whom he received Dharma transmission in 1989. He is the author of Buddhism Plain and Simple (1997), Buddhism is Not What You Think (2003), Meditation Now or Never (2007) and Why the World Doesn’t Seem to Make Sense (2012). To listen to an 8-1/2 minute excerpt from one of Steve Hagen’s Dharma Talks, entitled “Practice: The Essence of the Teaching,” click here.