December 12-14 - 3-day Integral Mondo Zen Retreat in Washington, DC led by Doshin Roshi. Registration by MKP.
December 15-19 - 5-day Integral Mondo Zen Retreat in Massachusetts led by Doshin Roshi. Registration by Kripalu.
January 10-16, 2015 - 6-Day Mondo Zen Sesshin led by Jun Po Roshi in Sonoma, CA.
March 5-8, 2015 - Weekend Silent Zen Sesshin led by Hollow Bones women priests at Sonoma Zen Center in California.
March 9-15, 2015 - 7-Day Integral Mondo Zen Sesshin led by Doshin Roshi in Philadelphia, PA.
April 24-26 - 3-day Silent Retreat at Norbertine Abbey, Green Bay, led by Vimala Roshi. Registration by Vimala.
April 20-26 - Integral Mondo Zen Sesshin led by Doshin Roshi at Venwoude International in the Netherlands.
May 9-16 - Sat-Sat- Mondo Zen Sesshin at Sunrise Ranch, Loveland, Colorado.
June 13-20 - Sat-Sat - Silent Sesshin at Dai Bosatsu Zendo, New York state, led by Junpo Roshi.
Visit the Retreat Calendar on the website for more information.
Venwoude is an Integral retreat center based in the Netherlands and home to a beautiful and steadfast community of practitioners dedicating their practice to not only their ongoing awakening, but of creating a generative space of sacred hospitality to support the embodied awakening of others.
During our week-long Mondo Zen teacher’s training, a global community of practice entered through the skillful tumbler lock of our Mondo process and
opened to the liberating recognition that the door to our deepest nature is always open...and the key to this vast kingdom is none other than our ongoing willingness to simply and fiercely choose.
Late one evening, during a period of zazen in the zendo, the sky opened
up and rain descended upon us as we listened to the Earth hurl bolts of
lightening back and forth with the Sky.
Our sangha sat in the dimly lit
room as bearded dragons of incense crossed among our ranks, and the
thunder echoed through the rafters and our chests. The beams in the
ceiling became the ribs of a sacred ark...and we sat not moving as our
water-bound zendo carried us on a pilgrimage deep into an awareness
beyond the juicy imaginations of sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, and
In the dramatic dance that commenced around and through us, we
sat still and remembered our first koan, “Is it possible to purely
listen? Can you listen without an opinion?” From this liberating
insight, delight opened, and we listened with wonder.
As I lay in bed that night, I remembered the curious story of the
Nether-Land people (people from the nether regions...beyond). They
descended from Viking lineage as a seafaring people and because of their
proficiency in using the ocean routes for trading resources and
knowledge, they became central to what unfolded as the beginnings of
As history continued, the Nether-Landers became
professional curators and merchants of the latest knowledge, science,
technology, and resources from around the world.
...And curiously, when
it came to finding a home for this global seafaring people, instead of
wasting more precious resources by continuing to war over other people’s
lands, they instead focused their vast experience by literally carving
the ocean away from a small tip of land and made a home for
I let that incredible fact sink in…”they carved the ocean
away and made a home.”
As I lay in bed that night and felt the thunder
still roaring through my own heart, I reflected upon how the karma of
the Nether-Land people as a whole, and how the committed community of
Venwoude in particular, continue to be at the edge of what is possible,
curating the best of what is out there, integrating the pieces together,
and creatively applying the fruits to a new historical situation.
smile of gratitude came across my face as I considered the unfathomable
karmic events that wove Venwoude and Hollow Bones together and how this
community serves as a curious attractor for courageous, pioneering, and
naturally integrative people from around Europe who are desperate enough
to choose to spend a quiet week inside the belly of a very ancient
seafaring vessel known as Zen-Dhyana.
My heart opens to a deep
gratitude of seeing, even in part, the unfolding of karmic conditions
weaving us all together, and the incredible blessing of knowing we will
be deep partnering friends...sangha...for a very long time.
gathered in the ship-hull zendo of Venwoude tasted the unstoppable joy
of partnering with others near and far who have chosen to cut through
and surrender to the karmic gift of being able to wake up and show up
with greater wisdom, skillfulness, compassion...and let us never
Namo Dai Bosa!
"To unite and be one with - as - the
Great Being of Compassion."
from it has been many moons
frost moon the doe leaves its breath