To strengthen our planetary network, ZPI will feature newly affiliated groups.
Join us here on the Hive to explore some of the offerings of the organizations affiliated with ZPI.
Introducing a new ZPI affiliate group:
What is your organization’s name?
Green River Zen Center
What is your mission?
We are a vibrant Zen Buddhist community, or sangha, integrating the Japanese-based Zen tradition with styles of Zen study and practice more accessible to contemporary American practitioners. Founder Roshi Eve Myonen Marko and Rev. Sensei Sally Sonen Kealy, as well as senior students, offer dharma talks and opportunities for private study. We also offer monthly one-day retreats and longer retreats called “Sesshin” three times a year, as well as precepts classes and other trainings.
Where is your organization based?
How many regular members do you serve?
Tell us a bit about how the group was conceived?
Green River Zen Center is part of the Zen Peacemaker family, founded by Roshi Bernie Glassman, and the White Plum lineage, established by Roshi Taizan Maezumi. A Stewards council, comprised of sangha members, governs Green River Zen Center (see Shared Stewardship). The council meets quarterly and all members of the sangha are encouraged to attend. We emphasize gender, age, and cultural diversity and support collective awakening by appreciating the Zen flavor of each and every participant.
Tell us about one exciting project, program, retreat, or other offerings you are currently working on?
We are in the midst of a 108 days meditation period and will begin our Winter Ango Intensive at the start of February.
GRZC’s social engagement is evident in the work that its members do in their jobs. Virtually every one of our members is a teacher, therapist, or involved in some other helping, healing profession. The Three Tenets is a staple of the teaching and practice at GRZC, as you can imagine given Roshi Eve’s Marko’s history. The tenets are at the center of so many of our discussions, be they at Council or in the Dharma talks. It is safe to say that they permeate the culture of GRZC. As a sangha, in part because we are small, we contribute in small ways to local issues as they come up, such as helping undocumented families make ends meet or working at the local soup kitchen. We do not have any permanent service programs and yet that is a topic of discussion. We have to be careful not to over-burden ourselves given how much we already do with a small number of members.
What is the most meaningful challenge your organization faces?
We are relatively small in number and have a significant level of programming. Outreach is a challenge for us. We would probably benefit from a few more active members. We could surely be more diverse in our membership as well.
Your main website URL
To visit GRZC’s Facebook page, click HERE.
Main contact’s info (name, title, phone number, or email address)
Tom Redden, Member of the Board of Directors/Stewards council. Tel. 802-348-7988. Email: [email protected]
Tom Daijo Redden, Ph.D., is a ZPO priest, chaplain, and political scientist. Tom has taught political science at the college level for the past 30 years. He began practicing with Bernie Glassman in 1980 at the Zen Community of New York and has been affiliated with ZPO since its inception.
Roshi Eve Myonen Marko is a Founding Teacher of the Zen Peacemaker Order and the Green River Zen Center. She has served as a Spiritholder at bearing witness retreats in Auschwitz-Birkenau, Rwanda, and at programs with Lakota elders in the Black Hills, and is also a writer and editor. Her latest book, The Book of Householder Koans: Waking Up In the Land of Attachments, in collaboration with Roshi Wendy Egyoku Nakao, was published in February 2020.
To read some of Roshi Eve’s Dharma Talks click HERE.
Sensei Sally Sonen Kealy has been a student of Zen since 1976. Her first teachers were Sr. Elaine McInnis and Yamada Koun Roshi whom she met while in the Philippines. Sally continued her Zen Study with Roshi Bernie Glassman whom she met in 1980. She received lay ordination (jukai) from Roshi Bernie in 1987, and then following priest novice ordination she received Denkai in 1998. Bernie recognized Sonen as a Zen Teacher on April 24, 2011. Click HERE to read more.
Sensei John Genyo Sprague began studying the dharma over 40 years ago with Robert Thurman at Amherst College. He has studied Zen with Roshi Eve since 2005, and received dharma transmission from her in 2015. Genyo was co-teacher at GRZC for three years, and now is an associate, while teaching independently. He offers guided meditation experiences, spiritual-based counseling, and non-sectarian training programs, along with traditional Zen study, and is also a musician and performer. Click HERE to read more.