| Six Rings Sangha is a long-standing meditation group that offers an opportunity to step out of the hustle and bustle of daily life and learn to quiet your mind. Because we are a practice group, rather than a spiritual exploration or discussion group, our primary focus is on sitting together for zen mediation (zazen).
We meet on Thursday evenings from 7:30 until approximately 9:00 pm. at the renovated, one-room Rock Hill School in Linden Hall. New participants are always welcome!
Our evening gathering begins with shared inspirational reading (of a Zen Buddhist nature). After the reading, we move directly into two thirty-minute periods of zazen with a short walking meditation (kinhin) in between. Following the second period of zazen, we conclude with a few minutes of chanting. If you are new to meditation, we will gladly offer you some basic instruction in both sitting and walking meditation. On an evening when new or less experienced practitioners are present, we offer a shortened format that includes instruction and opportunities for commentary and questions.
Approximately once each season, we offer a longer, more intensive opportunity for practice which characteristically include more periods of zazen, a Dharma talk offered by one of our visiting teachers, a shared silent meal and introduction to other aspects of Soto Zen Buddhist practice such as gyohatsu (formal mindful eating practice) or samu (work practice). The opportunity for these extended practice opportunities support the seamless practice of Zen which brings the mindfulness cultivated “on the cushion” into our daily activities and cultivates an open, compassionate mind.
Questions or relevant points of clarification regarding our Zen practice are welcome and may best be addressed briefly at the end of the evening. Opportunities for more extended discussion at times other than our Thursday evening meetings may also be arranged. In addition, we may suggest that you speak with one of our guiding, visiting teachers. Several of the members of Six Rings Sangha who are long-time students of Rev. Dai-En Bennage, Roshi, retired Abbess of Mt. Equity Zendo. As such, Six Rings Sangha practices in a manner that is consistent with Soto Zen as transmitted through the lineage of our teacher who possesses deep wisdom cultivated from years of training in Japan and thirty-six years of daily Zen practice. We are also fortunate to have the guidance of Barbara Tokuen Gray, a long-time practitioner of Soto Zen Buddhism who received lay entrustment to teach through Rev. Bennage.
We are very open to and welcoming of new participants. If you thing that you would like to stop in and get a feel for our practice and group, it would be best to let us know ahead of time if possible. Please contact Mary Boutselis- (814) 883-4225 or firstname.lastname@example.org.