Day Sits With Seiju
A day sit with Seiju is an excellent opportunity for you to expand the dimensions of your practice. (Never forget that without a teacher, there is no Zen.) Take the lessons you have learned in zazen and extend them to formal eating, to extended work practice and even to a bit of quiet time as you find a spot on the AZC grounds to reflect. And then take the questions that have naturally arisen during those activities back into the zendo and more zazen. This is the essence of a Zen practice. It is both a challenge and an opportunity. So reaffirm your commitment to your Zen practice and sit for a day. That's what sitters do!
The day sit generally lasts from 6am - ~4pm and will include:
- Tea, chanting and zazen
- Formal breakfast
- Extended samu (work practices)
- Personal quiet time
- Formal lunch
- A Dharma talk
- Informal Q&A
As both breakfast and lunch are held in the zendo (and are therefore silent activities), there is a minimum protocol that you are expected to recognize. An introduction to this is given, as needed, on the Friday evening prior to the sit. For more info - stop by or call or drop us a note through the Contact page.
While the day sit is recommended for those of you who have been sitting consistently for at least three months, motivated beginning members are encouraged to talk to Seiju for consideration.
The suggested donation is $50. In order to plan for the meals, participants are asked to inform the office at least three days prior to the sit. And finally, as there will be extended work periods (often landscaping), participants are expected to bring weather appropriate clothes and hats (and work gloves, if available).
Day Sits With Mitra Bishop Roshi
A Brief BIO
Mitra Bishop Roshi is the founder of Mountain Gate-Sanmonji. She first encountered the practice of Buddhism while living in Asia and began practicing Zen in 1974 while living in Turkey. Later she trained at the Rochester Zen Center with Roshi Philip Kapleau. Mitra-roshi received a B.A. from Indiana University, and worked in graphic, interior, and architectural design for many years. She has two children, three grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
In 1986 Mitra-roshi was ordained by Roshi Kapleau (top photo, right). In 1992, after completing her formal training in Rochester, she went to Okayama, Japan, where she continued to deepen and broaden her practice at Sogen-ji, a Rinzai Zen temple, under the guidance of the Ven. Harada Shodo-roshi.
When Mitra-roshi returned to the United States in 1996, she was formally sanctioned to teach by Roshi Kapleau as a Dharma Heir. In that same year she was asked to come to Hidden Valley Zen Center in San Marcos, California to guide the Sangha there. Concurrently, she established Mountain Gate as a monastic practice center in the mountains of northern New Mexico.
The day sit ...
Day sits generally run from 9:30 - 3:30. This includes zazen (seated meditation) and teisho (a formal talk). Bishop Roshi also will provide sanzen (personal interviews) to her current students.
There is no suggested donation, but donations are accepted. There are no formal meals and participants are expected to bring a sack lunch.