Great Tree has 2 practice periods; Fall-Winter and Spring-Summer. See our calendar for the dates of the upcoming periods.
A 3-month practice period at Great Tree is a time to renew one’s commitment to personal and sangha meditation practice.
To join the practice period you must contact Rev. Munnich and set up a time for dokusan (teacher-student interview) during which you will discuss the activities you will commit to attending during the period. These could include attending a study group, participating in scheduled meditations at Great Tree or another sitting group weekly, attending one or more sesshins during the period, or other options as determined during your conversation with Rev. Munnich. For more information or to contact Rev. Munnich for dokusan by sending an email Great Tree or call 828-645-2085.
Practice periods begin and end with a Practice Period Tea usually on the evenings of the begin and end dates. Again, the upcoming dates will appear on the calendar when they are set.
…a practice period is the skin, flesh, bones and marrow, as well as the mind, consciousness, and body of the buddha ancestors. Practice period is the top of the head, the eye of the fist, the nostrils, and the buddha-nature circle drawn in the air, as well as the whisk, the wooden staff, the bamboo stick, and the sitting mat of buddha ancestors. Practice period is neither creating something new nor reusing something old.
The World-Honored One said to Complete Enlightenment Bodhisattva and all those in the assembly as well as to all beings:
“Those who participate in the three-month summer practice period should abide as pure bodhisattvas, their minds free from the world’s chattering, uninvolved with the world’s opinions. On the opening day of the practice period, make a statement like this in front of the buddha image: I —Monk, Nun, Layman, or Laywoman so-and-so — now mount the bodhisattva vehicle in order to activate the practice of tranquility and together with all beings enter the mark of purity and abide in it so that we can all make complete enlightenment our temple. […]”
Dogen Zenji, Shobogenzo (trans. Tanahashi)