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Tassajara Zen Mountain Center

Cause Area

  • Community
  • Environment
  • Faith-Based
  • Health & Medicine
  • International


39171 Tassajara RdCarmel Valley, CA 93924 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

Tassajara Zen Center or Zenshinji (Zen Heart-Mind Temple) is the first Zen training monastery in the West. It is nestled in a mountain valley, inland from Big Sur, in a remote part of the Ventana Wilderness. Tassajara is dedicated to San Francisco Zen Center’s mission, which is "to embody, express, and make accessible the wisdom and compassion of the Buddha."


The Summer Work Practice Program provides a wonderful opportunity for living and working within a community where the basis of our life together is zazen (zen meditation). During the summer training focuses on discovering the essential oneness of zazen (meditation) and work. As expressed by Dogen Zenji, "The mind of the way is actualized by rolling up one's sleeves." Plunging whole-heartedly into the work and monastic schedule, students discover freedom from the limitations of our expectations and old habits, and our minds become fresh and vital. Suzuki Roshi said, "When we have no thought of achievement, no thought of self, we are true beginners. Then we can really learn something". We invite you to explore the joys and challenges of work practice with us working on the maintenance of monastery, in the kitchen, dining room, cabin crew, wood working shop, office, garden, and/or bathhouse.


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