"Sesshin" (literally, "touching the heart") are intensive periods of group practice with approximately ten hours of meditation each day. It is a practice designed to challenge participants, and there is no better way to dive deeply into Zen and awakening.
"Retreats" - less intense than sesshins - usually involve about six hours of meditation, and typically include a full schedule of zazen, group study sessions, and work practice.
In addition to the meditation hall, communal spaces, and the outdoor garden with walking paths, NZC accommodations include several 2nd floor sleeping rooms that serve as shared dorm space for retreat and sesshin participants. Vegetarian meals are provided. Meal preparation, eating formal meals together, and kitchen clean-up are part of the daily practice.
Outside of dharma talks and dokusan (individual meetings with a teacher), sesshins and retreats take place within a container of silence. Participants are expected to follow the schedule, complete the portion of the retreat/sesshin they have committed to, and to uphold the sesshin guidelines that support harmonious group practice.
Space is limited and an application is required. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about availability and to request an application. Once your application has been reviewed and approved, you will receive a confirmation email with payment information. Note: If you submit your payment before you have received confirmation, it will be returned to you.
Sesshin (meditation intensive) schedule for early 2019:
2019 New Year Sesshin: Monday, January 7, 7:00pm - Saturday, January 12, 12:00pm ~Early Registration & payment deadline: 5:00pm, Wednesday, December 19 Fees: Standard rate $230; Sustaining members $210; Supporting members $175
~Standard Registration & payment deadline: 5:00pm, Thursday, December 27 Fees: Standard rate $265; Sustaining members $240; Supporting members $200
A few partial scholarships are available for those with financial need. Send us an email to describe your circumstances and discuss payment arrangements.
The remainder of the 2019 sesshin and retreat schedule will be posted soon.
Note: Our teachers, Dosho and Tetsugan, do not receive payment from Nebraska Zen Center for leading retreats but rely on "teacher dana" for compensation. $30 per day of retreat is the suggested dana per person, but if your financial circumstances allow for more or less than that amount, your gift will be received with gratitude.