Everyday Dharma Zen Center is a Buddhist community dedicated to cultivating compassion and wisdom. Our effort is directed toward reducing suffering, both our own and that of others. We train ourselves in the meditation practices of mindfulness, of stillness, and of loving-kindness, making an effort to bring these qualities into our everyday lives.
Our experience is that we suffer less if we can learn to notice our thoughts, reactions, and emotions as quickly as possible. Such mindful awareness expands our freedom, allowing us to make more skillful choices that create less suffering for ourselves and others. By cultivating stillness, we can begin to erode our negative habits, and respond more openly in our everyday lives. And developing a sense of universal friendliness helps us to recognize and act upon our many connections within our world.
Our practice together is also an act of co-creation. The experience of support within our sangha—the community of practitioners—is especially important in helping us live our lives.
Our Head Teacher, Carolyn Atkinson (Eiko Joshin) is a Dharma Heir and Lineage Holder of the late Kobun Chino Otogawa Roshi, in the Soto Zen tradition. She has also trained in the Vipassana tradition. Her first book, Quiet Mind Open Heart, provides instruction in using mindfulness and Stillness Abiding meditation to increase our compassion and equanimity. Carolyn's latest book, A Light in the Mind, explores the practice of embracing self-acceptance.