Zen Peacemaker Affiliate
Bread Loaf Mountain Zen Community
BLMZC's mission is to support a sincere and dedicated Zen Peacemaker practice community, to serve others by providing training, service, and programs for social and individual transformation.
Tell us a bit about how your group was concieved
After a street retreat in Rutland VT, a small group of meditators in this region decided to create a hub for practice and social action. BLZC fosters the integration of Buddhism, social action and spiritual care to serve people in rural Vermont who are marginalized, alienated or isolated because of age, ability, health, education, and economic status. We also offer opportunities for people from everywhere to study the ZPO three tenets and engage in ZPO practices. We offer study groups, street plunges, days of reflection, monthly Gate of Sweet Nectar ceremonies, ZPO precept renewal ceremonies, and other ZPO practices.
How many members do you serve? 400
Tell us about one exciting project, program, or other offering you are currently working on.
In addition to numerous street retreats planned for 2019 and 2020, we are also beginning to plan a Bearing Witness retreat in Montgomery AL, to bear witness to the genocide of African Americans there as well as the development of the Civil Rights movement.
How do the Three Tenets inform your social engagement?
Bearing witness to poverty in Rutland Vermont during a street retreat in 2016 and another in 2018, has led us to consider serving those who are food insecure in the Rutland region. As a result of those retreats, we started Bread Loaf Mountain Zen Community, and we now host meals weekly at a free food cafe in Rutland, in partnership with an evangelical Christian group there. We did not know what Rutland needed, but by bearing witness to life on the streets there, we came into relationships with many people in the community who have invited us to join them in taking action against hunger and social disconnection.
What is the most meaningful challenge your organization Faces?
Being spread to thin...
For more information: joshin@breadloafmountainzen.org
Bread Loaf Mountain Zen Community -
Cornwall, Vermont