Sesshin means to unify or expound the Mind. It offers a unique opportunity to deepen practice and training in an intensive immersion into zazen (shikantaza).
The annual Rohatsu Sesshin is unique in that we sit up all night the last day in observance of Buddha's Enlightenment. We will be practicing at the Zonolite training center.
Elliston Sensei will lead a series of informal discussions on experience during zazen, and will offer daily dokusan, time TBD.
Follow the schedule to the degree possible. As a lay practice Sangha we recognize family and work-related responsibilities and encourage partial attendance as well. If possible please attend the orientation on Sunday and plan your entry and exit during break times. Please inform the Retreat Leader (Ino) if and when you must be absent. (download schedule here)
Meals will be informal and Oryoki-style at the discretion of the Tenzo; please bring your bowl set if you have one; if not one will be provided. Please let Tenzo know of any special dietary
Please observe silence when arriving, leaving, and especially between lights out until the middle breakfast bell is rung. Please avoid reading; talking only when necessary and during formal dialog.
The Atlanta Soto Zen Center is one of the busiest non-residential Zen Centers
in the USA. For details on our robust program, click Practice Schedule
|• Newcomers||— Instruction/Orientation/Workshop Wed 7:30 pm|
|• Atlanta Region||— Dialog with interfaith groups, schools, public|
|• Training Center||— Formal training of Priests and Disciples of STO|
REGULAR PRACTICE PROGRAM
|• Buddha Practice||— Daily sitting meditation sessions (zazen)|
|• Dharma Study||— Regular dialogs & discussion forums|
|• Sangha Service||— Weekly sutra services & social events|
|• Zazenkai||— Monthly Friday—Saturday retreat|
|• Sesshin||— Annual; Precepts; Buddha’s Elightenment Day|
|• Hossen||— 5th Sunday Dharma Combat (4/year)|
|• Ango||— 30- & 90-day practice period (student residency)|
|• 4th Friday Forum||— Sangha dinner & discussion; guest speakers|
|• Guest Teachers||— Visiting Zen teachers, authors & educators|
|• Holidays||— Buddhist Holidays; Founder’s Day; New Year|
|• Practice Path||— Initiation (Jukai); Discipleship (Zaike Tokudo)|
Sunday Mornings 11:00 am Tuesday Evenings 8:00 pm EST
The Atlanta Soto Zen Center, founded in 1977, is one of the larger non-residential Zen centers in the country, offering a full schedule of morning and evening zazen, zen meditation and protocol instructions for beginners, monthly all-day sittings (zazenkai) and occasional week-long retreats (sesshin). Please come join us in our beautiful location on Zonolite Place and look for opportunities to begin or deepen your Zen practice.
We also have a network of affiliated centers and sitting groups throughout the country and Atlanta suburbs. For locations, please see the Silent Thunder Orderaffiliates page.
Information for Visitors:
Services at the Atlanta Soto Zen Center primarily involve silent zen meditation (zazen). We welcome experienced visitors to attend any of our services. Please arrive 5-10 minutes before the start of the service and introduce yourself to the attendant. Our programs begin promptly at the time specified and we ask that visitors not interrupt services in progress.
We offer the following options for newcomers to zen at the center:
- Newcomers zen meditation instruction each Wednesday at 7:30pm
- Occasional "Zen Buddhist Basics" classes.
Appropriate attire is modest comfortable clothing. We remove shoes inside the center. Please do not wear fragrances.
If you have a large group or would like special accommodations (either on-site at the ASZC or a presentation off-site), please contact us in advance (click here for email).
We are pleased to announce the publication of the first and second volumes of teaching archives of our lineage founder, Rev. Soyu Matsuoka-roshi (click here to purchase).
July Sesshin (7-14th) Precepts Retreat and STO conference
November Rohatsu Sesshin (7 day)
Atlanta Soto Zen Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, funded solely through donations.
Please Click here to make an on-line donation through PayPal.
Silence/Thunder calligraphy by Rev. Dr. Soyu Matsuoka-roshi