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Guest Student Stays

Introduction

The City Center Guest Student Program offers a short-term residency opportunity of one to six weeks for those interested in beginning or continuing their Zen practice within the support of community. Guest students participate in the schedule and daily life of City Center. This includes morning and evening zazen (sitting meditation), service (sutra chanting and bowing), work (often of a physical nature) and communal meals. Zazen instruction, classes and lectures on Buddhism, opportunities for discussions and meetings with teachers and practice leaders are also offered.

There is a cost of $20 per day, with a one-week minimum (Monday to Saturday). A $50 nonrefundable deposit is requested upon confirmation of your guest student stay.

Guests students arrive on Monday mornings at 8:45 am and depart Saturday afternoons after lunch.

Guest Student Program Description

The City Center Guest Student Program provides both an introduction to residential Zen practice and the opportunity to establish and strengthen Zen practice as a central part of one’s day-to-day life. Guest students are expected to follow all aspects of City Center’s daily practice schedule (see below).

In the spirit of maintaining Buddhist precepts, guest students are asked to abstain from drug and alcohol use, and from initiating new sexual relationships during their guest student stay.

Guest students stay in simple shared rooms or small dormitories. If possible, please bring a sleeping bag and towel. We will provide you with sheets, blankets and pillows. Please bring closed-toe shoes (sneakers are fine) and slip-on shoes or sandals. Comfortable clothing, subdued in color, is preferable attire for zendo (meditation) events and temple ceremonies. We ask that shoulders and knees remain covered during zendo events. Please note that San Francisco’s weather can be quite variable.

To Apply

Please download and complete the Guest Student Application [Word]/[PDF]. It can be digitally signed and emailed to ccwork@sfzc.org, or signed and mailed to:

San Francisco Zen Center
c/o Guest Student Manager
300 Page St.
San Francisco, CA 94102

Booking is performed in the order of applications received.

Guest Student Daily Schedule

Monday through Friday Saturday
5:00 am wake-up bell 6:10 am wake-up bell
5:25 zazen 6:30 zazen
5:55 kinhin (walking meditation) 7:10 service
6:05 zazen 7:40 soji
6:40 service 7:55 zendo breakfast
7:05 soji (temple cleaning) 8:40 break or 8:45 zazen instruction
7:20 breakfast 9:25 zazen
9:00 work meeting 10:15 lecture
12:30 end work lunch 11:00 tea & discussion
1:30 pm work 12:00 lunch
3:00 end work tea with a
practice leader (once a week) or informal study
1:30 pm afternoon off
5:40 zazen 6:00 dinner (optional)
6:20 service Sunday
6:35 dinner 7:30 am breakfast