The Detroit Zen Center

A Living Tradition

Founded in 1990, the Detroit Zen Center is a branch of Sudeok-sa, a 1,300 year-old temple in South Korea, yet is an American Zen community. Our mission is to teach Zen Buddhism, and help those interested apply its principles -- awareness, compassion and wisdom, into their daily lives. Our Abbot and founder Hwalson Sunim has been a monk for over 40 years, with extensive training in North America and Korea.   

Specifically, we hold:

--'First Sundays', held the first Sunday of each month.  This morning workshop is designed for both beginners & newcomers to the Detroit Zen Center.  It includes meditation instruction, group meditation and a Dharma Talk.  It is followed by an organic vegan brunch & tea in the cafe, prepared by the monastic staff, with the opportunity for questions and dialogue between guests and the monks and students of the Zen Center.  After attending a 'First Sunday', guests may attend any other Sunday or week-day meditation held according to the public schedule (calendar).  All are welcome for 'First Sundays.  Stools and benches are available in addition to traditional cross-legged sitting mats.  The donation to attend 'First Sunday' is $20, or $15 for students/seniors.  This donation includes the organic vegan brunch & tea.

--Daily morning and evening meditation, open to anyone who has had attended 'First Sunday'.  

--Introduction to Zen workshops seasonally.

--Silent retreats seasonally (weekend and 5-day).

-- 2 - 60-day residential training periods, held in the winter and summer, where individuals live & study in the Zen Center, and follow its daily rhythm of meditation, work, & community life.  

--Rental or work-exchange residency in our attached Sangha House, for those looking to integrate a Zen Center lifestyle (early morning meditation, collective chores and meals, evening meditation) alongside their outside jobs and lives.

--An onsite-organic food distribution business & store, Living Zen Organics, which provides the primary means of supporting the Center.

--Public Yoga classes on Saturday mornings, and Sun-do (Taoist Yoga). 

Please check the 'Calendar' for times, dates or more details.  For a residency or work-exchange application, please phone or e-mail.

There is no formal membership.  The Detroit Zen Center depends on donations by guests, students & the public. We are a 501(c)(3) so donations are tax-deductible.  We ask for $5-10 donation for each meditation session, or to arrange a monthly contribution with the Director for regular attendance.

For further inquiry, contact the Director at Detroit Zen Center:  313.366.7738 or

WRITE-UPS ON THE ZEN CENTER!  (click to follow links)

DETROIT NEWS & MODEL D (about the cafe)

      Special Events

Volunteer Day & Open House
On the First Saturday of each month we hold volunteer work parties, and would love your help.  9am-12pm.    
Next date:  Saturday November 7.  

Zen  Retreat:  December 26 - 31, 2015 
Attendance must be approved by the Abbot.

Introduction to Zen Course
4 Tuesdays:  November 17, 24; December 1, 8
Each Session is 6:30-9pm.
A $50 deposit is due by Friday, Nov. 13