Northwest Zen Community
The Northwest Zen Community was established with the intention of transmitting the tradition of Dōgen as faithfully as possible. It was originally founded as the Bellevue Zen Sitting Group in 2007. Through the assistance of Rōshi Minamizawa, the chief abbot of Eihei-ji Soto Zen Temple, as well as the mediation of Rōshi Kaneda in Miyagi Prefecture, it was reconfigured as the Northwest Zen Community and it acquired corporate status in Washington State and became federally recognized as a non-profit organization. Our mission is to transmit Dōgen Zen as accurately as possible, including shikantaza (just sitting). Toward that end, we engage in traditional Soto Zazen, chanting, and Dharma instruction.
Activities and Schedule
Anyone who is sincere about exploring Dōgen Zen is warmly welcomed to join us. You can join anytime, but you do not need to make any commitments and you can also stop attending at any time.
The Northwest Zen Community has an office in Seattle, where there is a small Zen hall where people regularly practice Zazen. A Shakyamuni Buddha Statue that was donated by Bhutan is enshrined in the Zen hall. At the appropriate times, we also hold memorial services.
We hold regular Zazen sessions on the west (Seattle) side as part of a group practice called the Seattle Zen Center. We also hold regular Zazen sessions on the east (Bellevue) side as part of a group practice called the Bellevue Zen Center. The head abbot is Kosho Itagaki. The two assistant priests are Tetsuzen Jason Wirth and Shūdō Brian Schroeder.
No Membership dues are required. However, if you participate in an event, we ask you to please make a small donation to help offset our costs.