The western foothills of the Sierra Nevada is the location of the Zen Monastery Peace Center, 320 acres of rolling terrain, forest, meadows, canyons and snow-fed San Domingo Creek. Deer browse undisturbed just outside the Monastery kitchen door. Gray foxes call to each other in the dusk. Silent monks go about their daily tasks, bowing respectfully to one another when they meet on the paths.
The Monastery Building is of "rammed earth" construction with tile roofing. The many windows and doors were made by monks from salvaged timbers of giant redwood wine casks. There is a large fully-equipped kitchen, dining room with vaulted ceiling, a meditation hall, an eight-bed dormitory with individual privacy, and four separate bathrooms with showers. Other private hermitages are scattered among the trees.
The Monastery focuses on sustainable living. It uses solar power for electricity, supplemented by a propane generator, and maintains two large organic gardens.
Retreats and workshops on a wide variety of subjects are regularly offered under the guidance of Zen teacher Cheri Huber. Most are open to anyone who wishes to participate, some are more suitable for those new to Zen practice, and some are designed for the more experienced meditator. The usual format for these events includes periods of facilitated group discussion, meditation, meals, and free time. Often, there are periods of silent working meditation in which participants might, for example, help in the kitchen, work in the extensive gardens, assist in a building project, or sweep the verandah.
All are welcome at the Zen Monastery Peace Center to participate in the Sunday morning program. We require first-timers to attend an orientation. Orientations are scheduled on the last Sunday of the month, at 8:45 a.m. before 10:00 a.m. meditation. To attend, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. We will send information about Sundays at the Monastery. When you have confirmed that you will attend an orientation, we will send directions to the Monastery.
10:00 sitting meditation
10:30 group discussion
11:30 sitting meditation