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Sesshins held at ZCLA in 2014.

Save the Date!

  Sunday, October 26

Shuso Hossen Ceremony for Mark Shogen Bloodgood




Residential Training Opportunity

Resident training offers Zen students the opportunity to deepen their practice by living with a resident teacher and a community of practitioners. Residents combine Zen training with family and careers, engage in shared stewardship, and explore the dynamic life of Sangha. Zen Center of Los Angeles (ZCLA) has two apartment buildings for its Residential Training Program.   Applicants with either a little or a lot of experience as a Zen student may apply. Before the application process begins, prospective residents are asked to complete the introductory Zen practice classes, ZP1 through ZP3. The Buddha Hand Circle (BHC) oversees the application and admission process. Interested parties can contact Betsy Enduring-Vow Brown via Senshin, the ZCLA Program Steward at info@zcla.orgfor information and requirements. We currently have one studio apartment available.


Showing of the film "Disruption: Climate. Change."

This Friday evening, September 19, at 7:30 p.m. in the Dharma Hall

This film, produced in advance of the People's Climate March this coming Sunday in Manhattan, interweaves climate scientists and climate activists exploring the situation facing us, and the weeks and months of preparation for the Climate March.  Truly inspiring.  Running time is 52 minutes.  All welcome.

There's a line that divides good from evil, and it runs down the middle of every single person.  When we prevail, it won't just be because we beat the worst instincts of other people.  It'll be because we overcame the worst instincts and the worst fears, even within ourselves.

- Van Jones, Disruption

About the Movie

‘When it comes to climate change, why do we do so little when we know so much?’

Through a relentless investigation to find the answer, Disruption takes an unflinching look at the devastating consequences of our inaction.

The exploration lays bare the terrifying science, the shattered political process, the unrelenting industry special interests and the civic stasis that have brought us to this social, moral and ecological crossroads.The film also takes us behind-the-scenes of the efforts to organize the largest climate rally in the history of the planet during the UN world climate summit.

This is the story of our unique moment in history. We are living through an age of tipping points and rapid social and planetary change. We’re the first generation to feel the impacts of climate disruption, and the last generation that can do something about it. The film enlarges the issue beyond climate impacts and makes a compelling call for bold action that is strong enough to tip the balance to build a clean energy future.


Day of Reflection on Precept #2: The Practice of Not Stealing

Saturday, September 20, 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Led by George Mukei Horner

Every third Saturday is devoted to the Zen Bodhisattva Precepts. The day begins with a recitation of the precepts and includes zazen and face-to-face meetings with our teachers, a brief precept talk, and a precept circle. Open to everyone. For precise schedule click here.


Dharma Chat led by Sensei Daishin Buksbazen

Sunday, September 21, 11:00 a.m.

Once a month, we usually have an hour-long Dharma Chat led by a Sangha member on a various topics of interest. We discuss how we practice in everyday life situations and other issues. This follows our usual Sunday program of Service at 8:30 a.m. and Zazen at 9:00 a.m.


Precepts Study Series: Introduction to the Sixteen Bodhisattva Precepts Wednesdays, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m. Sept. 24, Oct. 1, 8, 15, 29; Nov. 5

Led by Faith-Mind Thoresen & Dharma-Joy Reichert

The classes are open to all those interested in learning about the precepts and are highly recommended for everyone practicing at ZCLA. The classes will be a combination of lectures and discussion. Assignments will be given. It is a prerequisite for everyone interested in formally receiving the precepts (Jukai).  

The Precept Class topics include: The Three Treasures, The Three Tenets, The Three Vehicles, Cause and Effect, The Ten Grave Precepts, Atonement, and ZCLA’s Statement of Right Conduct. Tuition: $175 members; $300 non-members. Includes Precepts Study Workbook.  To register please, sign-up below and contact Senshin at  The deadline to sign-up is Thursday, September 18. Full participation is requested.



HIGH HOLIDAYS 2014 / 5775 Shir Hadash Contemplative Community

Wednesday, September 24 to Saturday, October 4, 2014

Led by Rabbi Don Ani Shalom Singer

This New Year, 5775, Shir Hadash Contemplative Community will celebrate the High Holiday / Days of Awe at The Village Church of Westwood, CA. It is minutes from the Sunset Bvdl. exit off the 405 Freeway.

In 1964, Rabbi Don Singer was ordained Rabbi at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati Ohio, the mother school of Liberal Judaism. This year 2014/5775 marks his 50th year of service as Rabbi and his 20th anniversary of having received Dharma Transmission from Roshi Bernie Glassman.  Please join us, old friends and new to celebrate the Days of Awe, led by our rabbi in his "Golden Year."  For information & schedule: click here.


Wednesday, Sept 24: Evening service Erev Rosh Hashana 8:00pm

Thursday, Sept 25: Morning service 10:30am, The Shofar, Vegetarian potluck lunch


Friday, Oct. 3, Evening Service-Kol Nidre 8:00pm

Saturday, Oct.4, Morning service-Yom Kippur service, quiet meditation, Yiskor Memorial service, Neilah Closing service, and break-the-fast.

Special Notte:  The Shofar will be played by Brian Rich who also went with Roshi Bernie to the Auschwitz Bearing Witness Retreats.

Any questions contact Rabbi Don Singer,  or (310) 454-8324.  To register, click here. Walk-up and last-minute guests are welcome.



Personal Practice Talk by Diane True-Joy Fazio

Thursday, September 25, 8:00 p.m. (Service 7:15 p.m.; Zazen 7:30 p.m.)

During Personal Practice talks, the speaker introduces their spiritual journey to the Sangha, focusing on the themes that have run through their lives and the insights, people, and events that have deepened and transformed their understanding of life itself.  Come take this opportunity to get to know your fellow sangha member in a deeper way.  Everyone is welcome to attend.  Followed by tea and cookies.


Fall Practice Period and Shuso Entering Ceremony

Saturday, September 27, 9:00 a.m.

Join us as we open the Practice Period with an Entering Ceremony in the Zendo. Five Sanghas will be participating, from Los Angeles to New Jersey.

For a copy of the Practice Period Commitment form, click here.  You don't have to turn these in with your commitment forms and can use them throughout the Ango.

For a copy of the Sutra Writing document for you to print out and use for your writing commitment, click here.

Please hand in your form by Wednesday, Septmeber 25 so we can enter your name on the Sangha Training Board and in the next edition of the WaterWheel Newsletter.

Fall Practice Period Commitment Circle

Saturday, September 27, 11:30 a.m.

After morning sitting, we will meet in the Dharma Hall for a Practice Period Commitment Circle where we can discuss our commitments for this practice period and share and receive the support of the Sangha.



Showing of film "Falling for the Mountain" and Discussion

Sunday, September 28, 11:00 a.m.

This Sunday we will be showing the 26-minute poetic documentary written and directed by ZCLA member Susanna Knittel. In "Falling for the Mountain," a new generation learns to steward an inherited swiss alp -- new relating to land and people develops. The needs of land and buildings call into collective action.  After viewing this intimate look at one human family and their relationship to land and each other, we will have a discussion about our own relationships to land and others.


The Practice of Perfection: The Ten Paramitas from a Zen Buddhist Perspective Class #8 Pranidhana

Thursday, October 9, 7:30-9:30 p.m.

A ten-class series led by Roshi Egyoku

The remaining Thursday night class dates are:

November 20 and December 18. 

ZCLA Members: $20 per class; Non-Members: $30 per class

RSVPS only. The class is full but if interested, please email



Friday, October 10 eve. 7:00 p.m (registration). Zazenkai begins 7:30 p.m. through Saturday, October 11 at 5:00 p.m.

Led by Deb Faith-Mind Thoresen

Everyone is encouraged to come to this silent and restful day with zazen, service, work, meals, Dharma Talk, and face-to-face meeting. The schedule is similar to a day of sesshin. Open to everyone. Fee: $40-50; $75 for nonmembers. Zendo remains open for non-participants.

for application click here.

for schedule click here.



2014 Fall Practice Period

October 3 - December 31, 2014



“Zazen” is the theme for our 2014 Practice Period.
In particular, we are emphasizing approaching every activity
of our daily life from the unity of zazen. We will
train ourselves by using the actions of our daily lives to
wake up and function from unity and love.

We ask you to consider what commitment you can
make to deepen your practice. The emphasis is on deepening,
not stressing yourself out unnecessarily by adding
more activities. What is doable and sustainable for you
for three months? Is there something unnecessary that
you can set aside? What will help you hone your inborn
urge to live awake here and now?

Circle News

Health Circle

The Caring Net is one program of the Health Circle. This group of volunteers offers support to ZCLA members who are experiencing acute medical issues. The forms of  assistance include food shopping, preparation of frozen meals, transportation, visits and meditation support. New volunteers are welcome and always encouraged.  To learn more, please contact Luminous Heart at


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