Wednesday evening classes
There is a class at the Zen Center most Wednesday nights, except during the summer months and the month of December. Classes focus primarily on Buddhadharma (Buddhist teaching), particularly from the Soto Zen perspective. Recordings of current classes are found below as they are available. For past classes, please contact the Center for links to recordings.
All Wednesday night programs are free and open to the public. Though there is no charge, donations are gratefully accepted.
7-7:10pm Evening Service (Fukanzazengi)
Last Class – Universal Enlightenment
Genko taught a six-week class on Universal Enlightenment, introducing the Hua Yen school of Buddhism. According to the Lotus Sutra, we will all reach enlightenment and be Buddhas. The Avatamsaka Sutra is all about this. The concepts are presented in a way that is designed to be accessible to everyone, and all are welcome.
April 25 – Class #1. Introduction, Cause and Effect, Buddha Nature, Bodhicitta.
May 2 – Class #2. Four Noble Truths, Precepts.
May 9 – Class #3. Indra’s Net and the Dharmadhatus.
May 16 – Class #4. The Environment.
May 23 – Class #5. Faith, Nonattachment, Mindfulness, and Bodhicitta.
May 30 – Class #6. The Ten Practices (Chapter 21 of the Avatamsaka Sutra)
Dharma Studies / Seminary
Dharma Studies / Seminary classes are intended to create and maintain a shared body of knowledge and understanding about Dharma and Soto Zen within the Sangha. Classes may be taken for formal seminary credit toward graduation, or for personal enrichment without concern for credit. In either case, Dharma Studies / Seminary classes are intended for members who are senior practitioners with an understanding of fundamental Buddhist and Soto Zen concepts and vocabulary. Tuition is $120/term.
Dharma studies classes are in-depth explorations of Dharma available to members of Dharma Rain or its affiliated groups for personal enrichment. Students may choose to audit the material by attending classes and reading, or do the class assignment for their own experience. Tuition is $60/term.
The seminary program is for the training of members who expect to move into leadership and instructor roles. These students must apply and meet specified criteria. Their class work will be subject to a higher level of observation and review, with a focus on their ability to integrate and express the material. When a person enters the seminary training track, their prior work in seminary-level courses is reviewed, and it may be requested that they repeat a class in order to have their work assessed at this greater level of scrutiny.
See more information about the Seminary program, including prerequisites and how to apply.
In the spring of 2018, the seminary class is Dogen, taught by a team of teachers. It began Tuesday, February 20, and meets the following Tuesdays: March 6, 13, & 20; April 3, 10, & 24; May 1, 15, & 29.
Independent Study Groups
Authorized instructors and teachers may offer study groups intended for enrichment, with permission of the Dharma Council. Such small group classes or groups are not considered seminary classes and will not count for credit toward Seminary requirements. Instructors may manage these groups independently: they can set prerequisites, limit numbers, require reading outside of class time and so on.
Each small group study has a fee of $30 to cover building costs. The instructor handles registration and is responsible for collecting fees.
Taking Your Seat
Finding your place in the practice of Zen and in a spiritual community is not always easy. Taking Your Seat is a program designed to help newer members of Dharma Rain establish their meditation practice, create warm relationships with other members, and become part of the temple community.
Taking Your Seat is for active members of Dharma Rain in their first few years of practice. The program begins in September and includes five Tuesday evening meetings from 7-9pm over the course of three months: September 19, October 3, October 17, November 14, and November 28. Leaders are Shin’yu and Ko’in. Classes will meet at the Sodo.
Please register for the classes by using the form below.