David Weinstein

Koan study is central to the work being carried out at John Tarrant’s Pacific Zen Institute, but when David Weinstein, a supervising teacher at the Institute, first encountered koans, he resisted them. His Buddhist practice began in Nepal, where – while taking a break from teaching English abroad – he visited the Kopan Monastery outsideContinue reading “David Weinstein”

John Tarrant

One of the Zen teachers I was most eager to meet when I undertook my pilgrimage was John Tarrant. I had been taking a medication for osteoporosis – Fosamax – which had this peculiar side effect: it resulted in spontaneous femur breaks. One didn’t fall and break one’s leg; one’s leg broke and then oneContinue reading “John Tarrant”

Sojun Mel Weitsman

During my meeting with the abbots at the San Francisco Zen Center, all three were wearing rakusus – the bib-like garment which represents the Buddha’s patch-work robe.  Steve Stücky wore his over the traditional brown robes of a monk, Blanche Hartman over black, and Mel Weitsman wore his under a worn jean jacket. None ofContinue reading “Sojun Mel Weitsman”

Zenkei Blanche Hartman

This is the story Blanche Hartman told me about how she first became engaged in Zen practice: “One day in 1969 I was at the house of my best friend, and we were just having coffee. She had a headache, and it was so bad she asked me, ‘Could you see that?’ I said, ‘What?’Continue reading “Zenkei Blanche Hartman”