Cultivating the Way: The Six Paramitas

     A Six-Week Online Course
     with Jiryu Rutschman-Byler
     May 10 - June 21

How can we become more generous? More ethical? More patient? More energetic? More concentrated? More wise? And what does any of that have to do with Zen?

Join Jiryu and the San Francisco Zen Center sangha for this online course, with teachings delivered in segments that work for our busy lives. All lectures and live meetings are recorded, so you may participate at your own pace.

On Cultivating the Way: The Six Paramitas

Zen teaches clearly that when we let go of everything we think we are, and everything we think the world is, our basic Buddha Nature can shine and function freely.  If we just get out of the way, this basic nature will respond spontaneously and appropriately to whatever arises, harmonizing with and bringing benefit to all beings.

There is also in Buddhism a vital and complementary teaching that our ancient and unhelpful habits of body, speech, and mind can’t just be sidestepped in a “letting go” that fails to really face and wrestle with our deep greed, hatred, and delusion.  There is long, careful cultivation that we must undertake if we are to achieve true maturity in the Buddhist sense.

Right at this intersection of sudden and gradual, of perfect spontaneous enlightenment and the slow cultivation of virtue, lie the teaching of the paramitas, or perfections – the virtues that go beyond virtue.

In this online course, we will explore and consider together how to cultivate the six paramitas (generosity, discipline, patience, energy, concentration, and wisdom), drawing inspiration from Zen and broader Buddhist teaching as well as from our own lives and practice.

You Will Receive:

-One 5-10 minute video posted nearly every day over the whole 40 day course! 30-60 minutes of video sessions with Jiryu. The sessions focus on the six paramitas, how they have been taught traditionally and how we might endeavor to practice them ourselves.


-Access to a private, interactive course website. This is the hub for all things related to this course and our Online Sangha.

-Weekly encouragement in your email inbox from Jiryu with inspiring quotes, suggestions, and questions to support and guide your daily practice.

-Participation in a discussion forum with Jiryu and participants from around the globe.

-Three hour-long LIVE interactive webinars. Participants can engage directly with Jiryu and the Online Sangha. Recordings will be made available, so you may view the webinars even if you are unable to attend any of the live sessions.

- Jiryu's labor of love - a set of "paramita trading cards" mailed to you, to help you to remember these teachings and bring them into your day.


From wherever you live, you can join Jiryu Rutschman-Byler, beginning May 10, by signing up for this online course. During these six weeks, we will explore ancient Zen and Buddhist practices and how to find your place within them at any moment in your practice.

Course Starts on: May 10 (LIVE webinars will be held on selected Thursdays: 5/23, 6/6, and 6/20)

All live webinars will be recorded so you will never miss a session, and can listen at your convenience, any time.

Course Fees:
$134 (members)
$119 (limited income)

Click here to register or call us at 888.743.9362 or (local) 415.354.0360

A limited number of need-based scholarships are available.  If you would like to apply for financial assistance, please review this page and fill-out an application.


What people are saying about courses taught by Jiryu…

- "Jiryu’s candid sharing of challenges and insights with his own practice gave relevance to the course."

- "I experienced Jiryu as embodying every attribute of a great teacher and bodhisattva: great and wide-ranging wisdom, great and open clarity, great and warming compassion! I felt Jiryu’s deep knowledge and caring transmitting powerfully through this “disembodied” online vehicle. This says a lot given I’ve only “met” him via this medium. It also says a lot for the technical structure and formatting of the vehicle itself, which I found well designed, reliable and easy to use."

- "Jiryu’s presence is simply beautiful. His wisdom and knowledge were conveyed intelligently and with clarity that ushered me towards a better understanding and appreciation for breath practice and more. I found Jiryu’s teachings reflected a depth of awareness, humility, and humor which allowed me to feel a human connection over the waves and wires of technology."

- "Jiryu is an excellent teacher. Would enjoy taking another online course from him."

- "It is so wonderful to be connected via this vehicle. The online zendo is excellent and Jiryu is totally awesome!"

Please direct any questions with this program to