About Tassajara

Tassajara is one of three practice communities that comprise the San Francisco Zen Center, which also includes City Center in San Francisco and Green Gulch Farm in Marin. Tassajara is nestled in a mountain valley, inland from the Big Sur coast in a remote part of the Ventana Wilderness and is dedicated to Zen Center’s mission, which is “to embody, express, and make accessible the wisdom and compassion of the Buddha.”

In 1967, Tassajara was established as the first Soto Zen training monastery on the West Coast, and offers monastic training periods during the fall and winter months. Each year from May to September, Tassajara, or Zenshinji (Zen Heart-Mind Temple), as it is known formally, opens its gates to students and guests alike for the summer guest season.


Dear Tassajara Guests,

Fifty years ago, in the fall of 1967, Suzuki Roshi led the first Tassajara practice period in this secluded valley. In the fall of 2017 we gathered once again—for the 100th practice period. In this great cycle of five decades we remember with gratitude the energy and optimism of the young people who worked with Suzuki Roshi to establish Tassajara. That energy, that optimism, and that deep wisdom continue to inspire the practitioners at Tassajara—and the many guests who visit us every summer. 

Like those of us who live here year-round, our summer guests come to find peace, stillness, and a simpler way of life. The quiet beauty of this place encourages us to slow down and settle in the absence of modern technology and the beauty of the natural world. 

After six months of monastic practice, we look forward each summer to meeting old friends and new and sharing the way of friendliness and compassion that arises in the silence. This summer, we open our gate and welcome you to our home.

With gratitude,
Leslie James
Abiding Teacher at Tassajara

Video: Myogen Steve Stücky on Tassajara

In the Media

In the Media

Tassajara's guest season in the news

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