Retreats offer time devoted to focused formal practice, allowing us to fully engage in the meditative, contemplative aspect of Zen. Participating in a longer schedule prepares Zen students for several day-long retreats called sesshin. Week-long intensive retreats for students in the Rinzai-ji tradition are available in the western part of the US at Mt. Baldy Zen Center and Rinzai-ji Zen Center. On the east coast sesshin at Dai Bosatsu Zendo in the Catskill mountains offers formal Rinzai Zen practice under the direction of Shinge-shitsu Roko Sherry Chayat Roshi and Chigan Rōshi. The New York Zendo Shobo-ji offers weekend sesshin multiple times a year and all-day sits. Chigan Rōshi leads a number of the New York Zendo sesshin annually.
The styles of the Zen Studies Society and Rinzai-ji style are slightly different, however, the relationship between the two traditions is very close.
Charles River Zen offers longer sits and strives to make these opportunities available. The schedule includes all the facets of formal practice that we encounter in the weekly sittings: seated meditation, walking meditation, chanting, formal tea. If the circumstances allow we will add formal meals to the schedule and opportunities for Zen in action: work practice. During the retreats there will also be the opportunity for private meetings with the Abbot.
Chigan Rōshi will be leading the Golden Wind Sesshin from October 1, 2022 through October 8 at Dai Bosatsu Zendo Kongo-ji. This is an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in intense formal practice in the Rinzai Zen tradition led by Chigan Rōshi. Please consider joining a contingent of Charles River Zen students in attending this sesshin. Please visit https://zenstudies.org/ to sign up.