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Exploring the Wild World of Koans: February 3-6 Virtual Retreat

Exploring the Wild World of Koans

A four-day on-line retreat co-led by Henry Shukman and Valerie Forstman.

Koans are records of the enlightened reality that great masters over the centuries have awakened to. They are a precious and generous system for sharing our deepest human experiences of reality. And they can serve as a trigger or spark that illumines a deep recognition of the awake world that has been here all along.

In this retreat we will dive into sitting with koans — why we might want to do so, how we do it, and, touching into the greatest mystery of all — not just what koans actually are, but what we ourselves are, and what this very moment is.

When: Thursday February 3 – Sunday February 6
Where: MCZC Virtual Zendo

What is retreat?

The Zen word for retreat is “sesshin.” Sesshin can be variously rendered as “encounter of the heart,” “governing the heart-mind,” “gathering the mind,” or “together in one mind.” several days of quieting, deepening, ingathering, and encountering the core of who we truly are.

In the Zen tradition, commitment to extended periods of practice dates back to the time of Shakyamuni Buddha. The Buddha’s own sitting, devoted and immovable, under the bodhi tree is often cited as the inspiration for sesshin.

With longer sitting:

  • the mind tends to settle
  • the heart becomes more tender, available
  • the body more readily anchored, balanced
  • the posture more upright and at ease: fully relaxed, fully alert.

Retreat Schedule Mountain Time (may change)

Main Block
8:45am – Movement
9am to Noon – Siting with Dharma talk at 10am
Noon to 1pm – Lunch
1-3:30pm – Sitting, movement and Q&A

Additional Sitting
6-8am Sitting
6:30-8:30pm Sitting

$100 – Part-time / reduced fee
$200 – Full fee
$300 – Benefactor

You can attend part or all of the retreat. We welcome those of you who are new to multi-day retreats. If you would like to sit with us for one, two or  more days, please give it a try.  If you are unable to commit to all days or all times during the day, come when you are able. Our zoom zendo without doors makes it easy for this to happen without disturbing those who are diligently sitting for the entire retreat. Teishos (dharma-talks) are open to all, at 10am each day. Please make a donation for the teisho, if you are able

Please pay as generously as you are able, but we understand that some of you will need financial assistance. If so, please contact Johanna to make arrangements. Thank you.

Photo by Assitej Norway on Unsplash

February 3, 2022
February 6, 2022
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