May - June 2023 Intensive - Be Nothing: Understanding Impermanence & Finding Liberation: Online/Visitor, 5/9 - 6/3

Practice Center
Date / Time
May 9, 2023 / 7:30pm - Jun 3, 2023 / 6:00pm
Event Type
Practice Periods

Be Nothing: Understanding Impermanence & Finding Liberation

Liberation, the release from suffering, is basic to the Buddha's teaching, from the Four Noble Truths to the Parinirvana, and fundamental to this practice. Our relentless, losing battle against impermanence and emptiness is the cause of so much of our suffering as well as suffering in the world. How do we stop the madness and cultivate clarity, awareness, and true compassion?

During this Intensive we will explore what it means to walk the path of liberation through our own efforts in zazen and discussion of the fundamental teachings of the Buddha as well as those of the Ancestors.

This is a traditional intensive training period common in the schools of Buddhism. Participants can engage in this training period in one of two ways; this page is for Online/Visitor Participation.

Residential [link]: Move in and live at City Center and follow the daily schedule.
Residential Application deadline extended to May 1

NOTE: Residential participants are expected to arrive on Monday, May 8, and depart on Sunday, June 4, unless other arrangements are made.

Visitor/Online (this page): Visit City Center for intensive events, or participate online, as you choose.
Visitor/Online Registration deadline: May 1

While Visitor/Online participants may visit City Center for practice events, Covid Health and Safety Guidelines for City Center's congregant living environment will apply.

About the Intensive

An intensive is a chance to develop and deepen your practice together with others in a supportive environment and through activities including daily sitting, study, practice discussion with teachers, and weekly sangha discussions. Weekly events include classes and Dharma talks. Participants may also meet individually with practice leaders.

The intensive will begin with an orientation, available both onsite and livestreamed, at 7:30 pm PT on Tuesday, May 9.

As part of the intensive, Rev. Chimyo Atkinson will teach a class on the practice period topic, onsite and streamed online, on three Mondays: May 15, 22, and 29, 7:30 – 8:45 pm PT. The fee for class participation is included in the intensive fee and does not require separate registration.

You may attend any of the components below onsite at City Center or online as you prefer. Visiting City Center to attend any onsite component requires you to first complete this Covid-19 questionnaire and receive verification before appearing at City Center.

There will be an opening One-Day Sitting on May 13 (Onsite / Online). The intensive concludes with a Three-Day Sesshin June 1 – 3 (Onsite / Online). Instead of the concluding Three-Day Sesshin, you can sign up for a One-Day Sitting on June 3 (Onsite / Online) which coincides with the final day of the sesshin. These sittings are NOT included in the intensive fee and require separate registration and payment.

Online components:

  • Online Portal
  • Online Class
  • Small Groups
  • Morning and evening zazen in the Online Zendo
  • Wednesday and Saturday Dharma talks in the Online Zendo

Onsite components: Covid-19 questionnaire is required

  • In-person morning and evening zazen and service
  • Visitors are invited to join the residents for breakfast after the morning program for an additional onsite charge, and asked to eat in the courtyard. Dinners on selected evenings will also be available.
  • Onsite class
  • Wednesday and Saturday Dharma talks in the Buddha Hall

Please review these documents if you will be visiting City Center during the practice period:

Fee Information
  • General: $165
  • Member: $148
  • Sliding scale 1: $99
  • Sliding scale 2: $41

For additional discount options, please email us at

Visitor/Online Registration

Or call 415-354-0360.

About SFZC Public Programs, Fees, and Cancellations