Zen Practice Programs

Life at Tassajara follows two seasons. From late September until early April, 50-60 students rise before dawn and begin a full day of zazen (seated meditation), study, and work, following a traditional Buddhist monastic schedule that dates back over thirteen hundred years to the early Tang Dynasty in China. When our Guest Season commences in May, the monastery opens its doors to the wider community. Our focus turns from the primarily inward activity of “practice period” to serving the wider community and sharing the experience of Zen practice and the joys of Tassajara. Since Zen Mountain Center’s inception, the Guest Season has been an integral part of the yearly cycle in these mountains.

There are a wide variety of ways to experience Zen practice at Tassajara, from the daily introduction to Zen meditation offered during guest season, to the fall and winter monastic practice periods. We warmly invite you to explore at whatever level you choose, and encourage you to ask any questions may have.

Resident Practice Leaders

Practice Periods

An intense period of residential practice, including daily zazen, lectures, classes, work and close contact with teachers.

Work and Stay

Sangha Weeks

Time set aside at the beginning of the Tassajara guest season to welcome Dharma teachers and members of affiliated and other sanghas to practice together.

Study Weeks

Guests explore Zen teachings, meditation, and work practice under the guidance of an experienced teacher.