Dharma Zen Center was founded by Zen Master Seung Sahn in 1974 as a place where
monks and lay people from all countries can practice Zen together and find
their true selves. We have formal meditation practice — bowing, chanting, and sitting Zen — in the mornings and evenings for both our resident Zen students and outside
members. During the day, our lay residents go out to their jobs or to school.
Visitors as well as our outside members are welcome to come for daily practice
and join in our monthly Zen meditation retreats, Dharma talks, and other
activities. All activities except for the retreats are free. See our
Daily Practice Schedule for details. For information on our monthly retreats, please see our Retreat Schedule.
Dharma Zen Center is located at 1025 S. Cloverdale Avenue, two blocks west of La
Brea Avenue, just south of Olympic Boulevard, in the pleasant Mid-Wilshire area
of Los Angeles.
Dharma Zen Center is a branch of the Kwan Um School of Zen, head temple, the
Providence Zen Center, located in Cumberland, RI. The School sponsors 90-day
winter Zen meditation retreats (Kyol Che) at the Providence Zen Center, at Hwa
Gye Sa Temple in Seoul, Korea, and at Kye Ryong Sahn International Zen Center
in Chunchong Nam Do, Korea; as well as a month-long summer Kyol Che at
Providence Zen Center and 90-day summer Kyol Che's at Hwa Gye Sa and Kye Ryong
Sahn International Zen Center. The School also publishes a quarterly journal,
ON LIVING AT DHARMA ZEN CENTER
Zen Master Seung Sahn has encouraged his students to live together in Zen
Centers where they can derive strength and support from each other's continuing
practice. The regular schedule of practicing and working together acts as a
backdrop for seeing our karma appear and disappear. We use the analogy of
washing potatoes together in a big pot of water. As the potatoes bump into one
another, they clean each other more quickly and efficiently than if each potato
was cleaned individually.
In the Zen Center, we can see clearly how our opinions create problems, by
coming between us and the situation that we find ourselves in. When we let go
of these opinions, it is possible to live our every day lives with clarity and
harmony. As we learn to cooperate, to see clearly and to accept people and
situations as they really are, our minds become strong and wide. Then it
becomes possible to act harmoniously and help other people with no trace of
The forms and temple rules we use are designed to help us see our opinions and
our inattentive minds in each situation. When we use these forms and rules as a
mirror to see our minds clearly, we see the cause our suffering and our
hindrances. With sincere effort and patience, we can also find the way to get
relief from our suffering and overcome our hindrances. In our Zen Center, this
is the work we are all doing together.
If you are interested in residential training and would like to learn more,
please contact Dharma Zen Center.