JUNE 2009, Vol. 1 No.5

As we approach the middle of 2009, it is time for Zen Center of Pittsburgh's June Intensive. If you've ever wondered what it would be like to live the life of a Zen monastic, here's your opportunity to find out. Whether you sign up for a day or the entire three weeks, this intensive practice period will allow you to follow a monastic schedule (reproduced below) that includes zazen, service, formal Zen meals (oryoki), temple job training, work, and study. In addition, the Intensive begins with a three-day sesshin and closes with a five-day sesshin this year.

Though we sometimes suggest a specific contribution for our classes, Buddhism generally relies on a concept called "Dana." This means that while the teaching is offered freely to everyone, we trust those receiving the teaching to be as generous as possible in return. In other words, please choose a level of giving commensurate to your income.

Please contact Kyoki to discuss participation in the practice period at kyoki@prairiewindzen.org or 412-741-1262.

Congratulations to Elizabeth Hospodar and Derrick Tetlow who were married at Deep Spring Temple on May 23rd. Lizz is the daughter of sangha member Leslie Hospodar.
Weekly Zazen Schedule
Location Schedules
June Intensive Schedule
Changes at Deep Spring Temple
10th Anniversary
Please arrive 10-15 minutes before starting time.

ZCP Weekly Schedule
  • Deep Spring Temple: 124 Willow Ridge Road Sewickley, PA 15143 (map)
  • Mattress Factory: 505 Jacksonia Way Pittsburgh, PA 15212 (directions)
  • Zen Friends: 4836 Ellsworth Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15213 (map)
  • June 3-day Sesshin: Friday, June 5, 7:00pm - Sunday, June 7, noon
    • Fairly short, but intense periods of practice, sesshins are comprised of numerous 75-minute-long meditation periods interspersed with the following activities (all performed with the same mindfulness practiced in meditation):
  • World Peace Ceremony: Sunday, June 7; 10:00am-12:30pm
    • Celebrated on the first Sunday of every month, this ceremony helps us rededicate our practice to bringing about a more peaceful world. An open discussion of Zen practice follows the ceremony.
  • Precept Renewal (Ryaku Fusatsu): Tuesday, June 9; 6:00-7:00pm
    • This evening of the full moon ceremony offers practitioners an opportunity to renew their commitment to the sixteen Bodhisattva precepts. All are welcome to attend!
    • Read more about Ryaku Fusatsu here.
  • Intro to Zen: Thursday, June 11; 6:00pm
    • These two-hour introductory workshops are a combination of gentle sitting, lecture, question and answer, and walking meditation. They also provide instruction on the forms of Soto Zen practice (bowing, entering the zendo, chanting), how to sit comfortably (should you use a cushion, a chair or a bench?), and suggestions for reading material in a variety of areas.
    • Please wear loose-fitting clothes. Jeans don't work, but sweats are great.
    • Please use these directions.
    • After this introduction, please plan to attend our regular sittings on Sunday at Deep Spring Temple or any of our other locations.
    • For more information or questions call 412-741-1262 or send an email to kyoki@prairiewindzen.org.
    • Suggested donation to register: $15 Donate

  • Difficult Conversations: A Buddhist Communication Workshop; Saturday and Sunday, June 13 - 14
    • In this workshop, we will explore the fears and concerns that arise when we are having difficulty with another person. Our teacher, Rev. Kyoki Roberts, will introduce mediation concepts that allow us to address such fears in a positive, constructive manner that creates win-win solutions.
    • Since the second day of this workshop falls on a Sunday, Deep Spring Temple's regular Sunday schedule will not be followed.
  • June 5-day Sesshin: Wednesday, June 24, 7:00pm - Sunday, June 28, noon
    • Like the sesshin offered monthly, only extended to five days to end the June Intensive Practice Period.
    • While we encourage everyone to sit the full five days, practitioners can sit any part of the five-day sesshin with a minimum commitment of one day.
  • Wednesday evening zazen; 6:00pm-7:15pm. Friends Meeting House (map).

  • Tuesday morning zazen; 7:00am-7:40pm. Mattress Factory (map).


Here are the monthly and daily schedules:

5-Intensive begins with sesshin at 7:00pm
7-Sesshin (until noon); Sunday Schedule
8-personal day
9-12-Regular schedule
13-14-Communication Workshop (no Sunday Schedule)
15-Personal Day
16-20-Regular Schedule
21-Sunday Schedule
22-Monks' Day Out
23-Regular Schedule
28-Sunday Schedule; Intensive ends at noon

5 am-wake-up
7:15-oryoki breakfast
11-end of work
11:45-noon service
12 noon-lunch (informal)
1:30-work or class
8:30-end of day
New Patio at Deep Spring Temple


Over the past year, we have lost several trees that have either died or posed a threat of falling for various reasons. Along with these signs of impermanence in our lives, as a sangha we have contributed to many changes on the grounds as well. At right is a photograph of the newest addition - a patio where once stood several pine trees. Many thanks to the sangha members who gave time and energy to design the patio, level the ground, place bricks and stone and plant foilage. At the close of the May sesshin, and as part of our Remembrance Ceremony, we burned the names of our departed loved ones while chanting the Enmei Juku Kannon Gyo while standing on this new patio.


Please remember to save the following dates and keep an eye open for more information on our website.
  • Tuesday, August 18: Intro to Zen and Sitting at The Mattress Factory Museum
  • Wednesday, August 19: Zen Friends Intro and Sitting followed by a screening of How to Cook Your Life at the Pittsburgh Filmmakers Melwood Screening Room in Oakland.
  • Thursday, August 20: Zen Cooking Class led by Rev. Edward Brown at Sweetwater Cooking School on the Southside of Pittsburgh.
  • Friday, August 21: A Taste of Zen dinner at Deep Spring Temple featuring cuisine from the countries of Buddhism.
  • Saturday, August 22: Family Fun Day at Deep Spring Temple with various family-friendly activities.
  • Sunday, August 23: 10th Anniversary Ceremony at Deep Spring Temple followed by a potluck lunch celebration.
  • Please check out the latest edition of Prairie Wind Online, the quarterly newsletter offered by Abbot Rev. Nonin Chowaney.
  • To make a tax-deductible contribution to the Zen Center of Pittsburgh, please click the 'Make a Donation' button. We are deeply grateful for your generosity.
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