Upcoming for Beginners

There is a Zen saying, “Not knowing is most intimate,” and in this spirit we are grateful for all beginners who visit Brooklyn Zen Center. If you are new to Zen and are curious about a supportive way to enter the practice, here are some ways to join us this spring.

Half-Day Sits: April 24, May 29, & June 26

A half-day sit is an excellent opportunity to deepen your practice with others and sit a little longer than you are accustomed. It’s also a gentle way to prepare for the longer retreats that we offer throughout the year. This special sit is offered for beginners and those with beginners’ minds.

Doors open at 9:30am, and the program runs from 10am-1pm. There will be 30-minute meditation periods, walking meditation, discussion, and a short talk. Please bring your questions and open minds!  

Cost: Sustaining $40 / Base $35 / Member $20. Partial scholarships are available. You can find more information on our Half-Day sits here.

Four Foundations of Mindfulness Class, May 3-June 7, 8:00-9:15pm

This six-week class will explore the questions: What is mindfulness? Why do we practice it? According to The Buddha, the deepest truths aren’t remote or mysterious but available through direct awareness of our own experience. The seemingly modest practice of attending to each momentbody, breath, feelings, states of mind, phenomenacan bring insight and peace into our daily lives and ultimately the freedom from suffering. In a culture devoted to frantic distraction and materialism, these insights, whether we merely glimpse them or realize them fully, can transform how we live in the world.

This class takes a practice-based approach, using classroom exercises and drawing on students’ life experiences. Both new and experienced meditators are warmly welcome. For more information about this class, and to register, please visit here.

Meditation in Everyday Life Class, June 2-July 7, 7-8:30pm

In this six-week class, we will practice releasing each thought, emotion, and sensation as they arise: exploring how these passing phenomena are not who we truly are and how identifying with them causes suffering. By meeting the mind in the stillness of the body and allowing the breath to be our gentle guide, this class will introduce students to transformative body-mind practices from various Buddhist traditions, offering a safe container to navigate ourselves back to wholeness. We will practice methods that help us pay closer attention to what is happening in the body, bring awareness to our habitual reactions, and generate a deeper sense of self-compassion.

For more information about this class, and to register, please visit here.

Second Saturdays: May 14 & June 11

On the Second Saturday of each month, we offer meditation instruction, short periods of meditation, and a discussion with question and responses. This is freely offered, and we are deeply grateful for $10 donations for those who are able to contribute.

The Second Saturday schedule

8:45am  – Doors Open

9:00am  – Meditation Instruction

10:00am – Break

10:20am – Meditation

10:40am – Open Discussion with Questions and Responses

11:00am – Talk with Questions and Responses (or another period of sitting meditation if no talk)

11:40am – Guided Service

12:00pm – Community Lunch

For more information, please feel free to email us.