Fall Practice Period 2015



During our upcoming Year-End Sesshin, the following SALA (Social Action Loving Action) activities will be included as part of sesshin:

1. Amnesty International Write for Rights Letter Campaign on Monday, December 28 from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m.

Each year, AI selects twelve Prisoners of Conscience worldwide and requests that the public write letters asking for their release. Sample letters are provided.

You can read about this years cases at

The Zen Center will provide all materials. We ask for a $5.00 donation to help cover postage as most letters will go overseas. If you cannot join us, please write from home. Last year, we mailed over one hundred letters.


2. Assembling Hygiene Kits for Refugees on Tuesday, December 29 from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m.

We will assemble 108 kits (, which will be sent to the Church World Service Disaster Relief Center Warehouses. CWS ( has staff and partners they work with, such as the U.S. relief agency, UNRA, Oxfam, etc. in different countries’ refugee camps, resettlement centers in Serbia, etcetera. We will have all the materials on hand.  Thank you to ZCLA member Betty Jiei Cole for this contact.

At ZCLA's December 3 viewing of Elias Matar's Flight of the Refugees, we were given a powerful glimpse of what it is like for those who are entering Europe in such vast numbers, desperately fleeing war.

We ask you to donate what you can to help cover our expenses.

How to Sponsor Kits. You may sponsor kits for $10 each. This covers purchasing the items for a kit, as well as the international postage needed for Church World Service to send it where it is needed.

We ask that your payment be with cash or check only

– Make checks payable to ZCLA and write "Hygiene Kits" on the check.

– Checks may be mailed to ZCLA, 923 S Normandie Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90006-1301

– If you are at ZCLA, payment by cash or check may be made using the green donation envelopes found in the Sangha House lounge. 

On the envelope, in the spaces provided, write: 

– your name

– the amount of your donation

– "for Hygiene Kits"

and leave it in the donation box.

– Payment may also be made in the Dharma Hall, when you come to assemble kits.

How to Help with Assembly. Zen Center is buying these items in bulk, and the kits will then need to be assembled. 

Each kit consists of a zip-lock bag containing:

– One hand towel

– One washcloth

– One wide-tooth comb

– One nail clipper

– One bar of soap

– One toothbrush

– Six band-aids

You are invited to join us in assembling 108 kits during MuGon Sesshin, on Tuesday, December 29, from 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm in the Dharma Hall. You do not need to be in sesshin to attend.

We will continue to accept donations for this effort after the first 108 kits have been sponsored. All donations received will be used to sponsor hygiene kits for Church World Service.

Once again, thank you, in deep gratitude for your commitment to zazen and to alleviating suffering in our world.


3. On Tuesday, December 29th, from 11:10 a.m.-12:10 p.m., the Zen Center will hold a Chant Circle in the Buddha Hall to mark the 125th anniversary of the massacre at Wounded Knee in Pine Ridge, South Dakota, to honor the 25th anniversary of the Chief Big Foot Band Memorial Ride, and to invoke our conviction to end genocide and massacre. The riders are on route and will arrive at Wounded Knee on December 29th, which was the day of the massacre.

(For a view of the 2014 ride, see

The group “Healing Hearts at Wounded Knee” ( has issued the following statement: “For the past 25 years, Native American people have been riding, running, and walking the route that Chief Bigfoot followed with his people, before they were massacred at the site of Wounded Knee in Pine Ridge, South Dakota. This year, to honor the 25th anniversary of the Chief Big Foot Band Memorial Ride and the 125th anniversary of the massacre, we inaugurate a 4-year cycle for global ceremony to end massacre and all that massacre means and to finally heal our hearts.”

Please take a moment to look at their website and consider supporting this effort with a pledge of support and/or a financial offering. At this link, you will find spoken word of their pledge:

ZCLA’s Chant Circle has been registered as one of the global ceremonies.


You are welcome to join in any of these activities regardless of whether you participate in sesshin. Of course, we encourage you also to take time out from a busy holiday season for a period of zazen. For the schedule, click here



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