Dai Bosatsu Zendo opens its doors winter and summer to serious beginners and seasoned Zen students who cannot afford to attend sesshin or kessei or who have more limited time. There are several options.
If you are interested in experiencing monastic residency for a minimum of two weeks, generally mid-December to mid-March and mid-July to the end of August (check calendar), you may qualify for interim residency. Read More
Dai Bosatsu Zendo offers unpaid self-directed summer internship opportunities. Many students can earn college credit for participating in an internship program. Read More
Join us for the weekend starting Friday afternoon and ending Sunday afternoon. When weather allows, samu focus on outdoor work, such as gardening, and raking. Participants may also engage in nittensoji (temple cleaning), tenzo (cooking) work, and other tasks in and around the monastery. Read More
Dai Bosatsu Zendo opens its doors to serious Zen students who cannot afford to attend sesshin or kessei during winter and summer interim. Beginners or well-seasoned students are welcome. If you are interested in experiencing monastic residency for a minimum of two weeks, between December 15 to March 15 and/or July 10 to August 31, you may qualify for interim residency. Your sincere motivation to deepen your practice, your willingness to follow monastic rules and give of yourself while working, sitting, and living with fellow residents is the most important requirement.There is no fee for Interim Residency.
Between the second week of December and the middle of March, Dai Bosatsu Zendo experiences its quietest time of year. This is a good opportunity for serious Zen students who would like a taste of residential practice. We accept students interested in joining our practice community for a minimum of two weeks. Each day consists of a simple daily routine: 5:30 wakeup, an hour of zazen, formal breakfast, morning meeting followed by a work period. Before our silent, formal lunch we sit for ½ hour. After a 1 ½ hour break we have afternoon work period, followed by an hour of body movement. Dinner time is up to you, most people eat before evening services, food is provided. Zazen is from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. After evening zazen we retire. Typical work includes monastery cleaning, cooking, sewing, laundry, snow shoveling, construction projects and whatever else needs doing. We ask that you carry out all aspects of practice quietly and thoroughly for at least five and-a-half days each week. Rest period is Sunday after lunch through Monday evening. Students have a simple room that may or may not be private. It is unlikely that Shinge Roshi will be at DBZ during winter interim. Contact with the outside world is limited. Bring a telephone calling card for your use. There is no wireless computer or phone reception. If you are subject to any kind of seasonal depression, this may not be the best time of year to consider a period of residency at DBZ.
From July to the end of August, DBZ hosts guest groups who rent our facilities to conduct their retreats. Summer interim is a wonderful opportunity for serious Zen students interested in residential Zen practice. We accept students interested in joining our practice community for a minimum of two weeks. The summer interim schedule puts a greater emphasis on work practice as we care for our guests. Each day begins at 5:30 a.m. with an hour of zazen followed by a silent, formal breakfast and a work period. We sit for ½ hour before the formal lunch. After a break we have another work period. Dinner time is up to you, (food is provided) unless we are hosting a group, then we may eat with them. We sit in the evening in accord with the guest group’s schedule. Occasionally caring for guests takes precedence over sitting. When hosting guests, the demands of our work constantly change. Typical work includes cleaning the monastery and guest house for guest arrival and after departure, cooking, laundry, gardening and whatever else needs doing. When we host groups we occasionally work extra hours in a day. At times work will spill over into breaks. We ask that you work diligently and thoroughly for at least five-and-a half days of each week. Rest period is typically from Sunday after the group leaves through Monday evening. Students have a simple room that may or may not be private. It is unlikely that Shinge Roshi will be at DBZ during your visit. Contact with the outside world is limited. Bring a telephone calling card for your use. There is no wireless computer or phone reception.
To apply for an interim residency, call us at (845) 439-4566, or e-mail the DBZ office.
Interns will join residents in the morning work period preparing guest rooms, temple cleaning, laundry, helping with vegetarian meals in the monastery’s professional kitchen, working in the monastery’s organic garden, maintaining grounds and trails, and tasks related to special skills. Through such work, students gain valuable experience in contemplative life, hospitality for guest groups, Japanese etiquette and culture, organic gardening and sustainability. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons, interns may pursue their independent studies in such areas as identifying rare plants, animals, and birds on the mountain and around the lake; taking notes on the garden and the kitchen; studying the sacred art collection at DBZ; and practicing calligraphy.
Expectations: Zen practice is a way of bringing clarity to one’s life circumstances and focusing the mind; it provides a way of investigating our most vital questions, so that our most important decisions can be informed by our intentions to live a life that is meaningful for ourselves and others. Time management, stress reduction, good work habits, and increased intuitive awareness evolve from this kind of intensive immersion, and provide life-long benefits. Therefore, interns are encouraged to participate in all aspects of daily practice, including morning and evening meditation, chanting, and work periods. They are expected to engage fully and responsibly, be willing to learn, and comply with monastery rules of conduct.
Duration: For a minimum of three weeks to three months, from late May/early June through August. Start and end dates are flexible. Although the internships are unpaid, depending on the university or college internship program, academic credit may be available.
Eligibility: Full-time students majoring in religion, Asian studies, environmental science, forestry, biodiversity, geology, creative writing, food studies, nutrition, health policy, hospitality management, public health, exercise science, education, and related fields. Preference will be given to those going into their junior and senior years, as well as to recent graduates.
Requirements: A cover letter stating the applicant’s interest in the internship, intention, and motivation. He or she should submit a resume that includes relevant coursework, related experience, volunteer work, and awards. Names, positions, and contact information for two or more academic and personal references should also be included. Once the applicant contacts DBZ, a residential application will be sent to them.
Deadline: April 30.
Selection Process: Applicants will be chosen based on the DBZ residential application, their resumes and cover letters, relevant coursework, professional and academic references, areas of interest, a residential application and a phone interview. If selected, prospective interns will receive a brief reading list of books that offer a good introduction to Zen practice, as well as a packet of orientation documents. Interns should begin (or continue) a daily meditation practice, and plan to keep a daily journal of reflections and research. They are welcome to come to DBZ for a samu work weekend during the application process. Check calendar for dates.
Please send application information to the DBZ office, or by post to Internship Program, Dai Bosatsu Zendo, 223 Beecher Lake Road, Livingston Manor, NY 12758.
Summer Interim Schedule
All residents including interns participate in our daily schedule, which in is modified according to events and groups being hosted:
5:30 am Wake-up
6:00 Chanting; zazen (silent meditation lasting 40 – 50 minutes)
7:00 Formal Breakfast (in silence, using bowls and chopsticks in a structured manner
7:30 Morning meeting
8:15 Nittensoji (temple cleaning)
9:00 Group work projects (assigned)
12:30 noon Zazen
1:00 pm Formal Lunch; cleanup
2:30 (T-Th) Individual internship/independent study work projects; journal writing
2:30 (F-Sun) Group work projects (assigned)
4:15 Individual movement practice (yoga, etc.)
5:00 Unstructured supper and personal time
6:00 Chanting; zazen; walking meditation; zazen
7:30 Closing; quiet personal time
Mindful work is emphasized. All are welcome, including families, but please let us know in advance if you plan to attend so that we can plan accordingly; also, do tell us about any special talents or skills you may have! If this will be your first visit, arrive early enough on Friday to attend an orientation in the late afternoon. There is no fee for samu weekends, but donations are gratefully accepted.