Haku-un-Ji Zen Center

Information about this center is no longer updated. This data was last updated on 11 October 2009.

Phone: 480-894-6353
Email: sokai@zenarizona.com
Website: http://www.zenarizona.com
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Of the thirty-two Buddhist organizations listed in Arizona, over half are in the Phoenix area. While some of these Buddhist centers cater to immigrant or first, second and third (and older) generation Asian-Americans, the majority do not. Instead, they introduce Buddhism – and particularly Buddhist meditation techniques – to interested Arizonans from a range of ages, ethnicities, and spiritual backgrounds. Following the trajectory of much contemporary Buddhism in North America, in Arizona the settings are simple, and the practice is shaped around individual interests, experiences and motivations.
The Haku-un-Ji Zen Center in Tempe succinctly illustrates this long-standing trend. New (established in 1994), it is part of a network of Zen meditation centers in Arizona, California and New Mexico. Located in a residential neighborhood and in the backyard of a private home, the center is a small air-conditioned room furnished with low benches and cushions for meditation. The center is funded exclusively by the donations of the members and visitors.

Activities and Schedule

The center serves tea followed by chanting and two zazen periods daily Mondays through Thursdays mornings from from 5 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., with varying evening sessions (including chanting, zazen and discussion groups) from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. On Sundays from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. the center holds a newcomer's orientation session to explain the postures and breathing techniques used in meditation as well as to introduce some of the basic ideas of Buddhist philosophy. Participants often stay for tea and coffee afterwards.
Besides these weekly activities, center members also have the opportunity twice a year to meet with ninety-six year old Zen Master Kyozan Joshu Sasaki Roshi. Roshi is the inspiration for the allied Rinzai-Ji meditation centers and his senior students sometimes visit the Haku-un-Ji center, along with other visiting Zen practitioners, for special lectures and session. Members may also take part in special two and three day retreats in affiliated meditation centers.
The center is funded entirely by donations, and securing sufficient resources is a constant issue.