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Buddhism: Details about 'San Francisco Zen Center'

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San Francisco Zen Center (SFZC) is the largest Soto Zen temple and practice place in the United States and possibly anywhere outside of Japan. SFZC is made up of three temples:

  • Green Gulch Farm (Green Dragon Temple or Soryu-ji) in Marin County, California
  • City Center (Beginner's Mind temple or Hoshin-Ji) in San Francisco, California
  • Tassajara (Zen Mind temple or Zenshin-ji) in the middle of the Ventana Wilderness Area of Monterey County, California

Zenshin-ji, established in 1966, was the first Buddhist monastery outside of Asia. Many important Western Zen teachers have practiced at SFZC, including Shunryu Suzuki, Zentatsu Richard Baker, Tenshin Reb Anderson, Philip Whalen and Dainin Katagiri.

At the time of its foundation in 1962, the San Francisco Zen Center was incorporated as a standard church organization, governed



by a board of trustees. In 1968, it was reincorporated as a corporation sole, a structure which entrusted ownership of all SFZC property to Shunryu Suzuki in his role as abbot. In 1972, following Suzuki's death, Zentatsu Richard Baker succeeded to this position.

The scandal that surrounded Richard Baker, and which forced him in 1984 to resign, caused SFZC to reorganize as a nonprofit membership organization formally governed by a board of trustees, a distinctly American and democratic form of running a Zen training monastery. Since 1988, the San Francisco Zen Center has been led by two equal co-abbots, a board of elders consisting of senior teachers, and the elected President of the Board of Trustees. The current abbots are Jiko Linda Cutts and Paul Haller.


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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "San_Francisco_Zen_Center". A list of the wikipedia authors can be found here.