an ancient, yet living tradition
While most people associate Zen practice with seated meditation, Zen is much more than that. It is a way of life based on direct experience and sincerity, and offers that all human beings can find lasting peace if they experience their true nature. Traditionally, the Zen Way is studied under a teacher, and within the context of a spiritual community.
Zen emphasizes simple practices, like seated meditation, as methods toward experiencing truth. While anyone can study Zen, some fully commit themselves to the study, as practitioners and eventually teachers, and become ordained Zen monks. We offer here a wide range of study opportunities, from casual practice to studentship, apprenticeship, and full time training.
Zen was born out of Buddhism, and became a revolutionary movement in the monastic communities of ancient China, one based in self-reliance & sustainability. Zen teachings spread throughout Korea & then into Japan. It eventually penetrated the whole fabric of these cultures, into both the working and intellectual classes, where its influence is profound to this day. Within the last 100 years or so, zen has been introduced to Europe and the Americas.
The Detroit Zen Center opened in 1990 as a spiritual branch of Sudeok-sa Temple in South Korea. It was started by a Zen monk who trained for more than 20 years under Korean masters, but was born in Detroit.
The Detroit Zen Center aims to offer an holistic opportunity for zen practice, as a year-round residency for monks and students. We welcome students, members and the public to join us as for a range of opportunities, as detailed in our schedule page.
A good place to start if you are a newcomer the the Detroit Zen Center, or a beginner in zen practice, is to register for a Tuesday night or Sunday morning Newcomer's Session. You may also apply for a weekend retreat, register for a volunteer day, or sign up as a Temple Stay guest.
We also have public gardens open daily at the Center, and are near completion of our public green roof, which will offer tours & tea.