Classes at Houston Zen Center are taught by the Abbot, Gaelyn Godwin, and by senior members of HZC. There is a modest charge for classes but scholarships are readily available. No one is turned away for lack of funds. The Tanto, Kogen Glen Duval will answer any questions about costs and scholarships.

Classes are open to everyone and are generally designed for all levels of practice experience from beginners to experienced meditators, unless otherwise specified in the class description.

Practicing with Sexual Energy:
Precepts, Power & Presence

March 22

Noon – 4:00 pm
Taught by Daigan Gaither

picture of Daigan Gaither

What is it to be upright and awake in the midst of sexual energy? How do we not turn away from ourselves or our experience in the present? Using small group discussions, guided meditations, zazen, and open dialogue we will explore our vow in the context of responsible sexual choices.
How can we learn to understand and relate to desire in healthy and respectful ways? Are we using our energies or are they using us? Join us as we explore what it means to practice while maintaining a healthy relationship to our sexuality.

Rev. Daigan Gaither began Buddhist practice in 1995 as a Vipassana practitioner and began to study Zen in 2003 with Ryushin Paul Haller, past Abbot of San Francisco Zen Center. He received Priest Ordination in 2011. His work and practice include many hours devoted to community service as one of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and a volunteer caregiver with Zen Hospice Project.
He has spoken nationwide on sex, sexuality, queer identity, and gender and has sat on a number of boards of community organizations serving marginalized communities. He has lectured at colleges as well as conferences and is featured in the book Sex, Sin and Zen by Brad Warner.

Cost is $35, $20 for HZC members. Register by Paypal (below), by phone 713–869–1952

Honoring Sexuality
picture of Jukai Ceremony at Houston Zen Center

Calendar of Events
Check what’s coming in future months:

This Coming Events Calendar is updated frequently.

A 6–Week Course
led by Rick Hogetsu Mitchell
with special guest speaker Hozan Alan Senauke
May 13 – June 17, 2014
6:30 – 8:30 pm.
picture of Rick Mitchell

This class explores the often–misunderstood relationship between Buddhism and social justice, beginning with Buddha’s original teachings and the edicts of India’s first Buddhist ruler, King Ashoka, and fast–forwarding to contemporary issues of world peace, economics, environmentalism, gender equality, diversity and political activism. It is open to both Buddhists and non–Buddhists, including activists, academics and intellectually curious practitioners of other spiritual traditions.
The classes will be preceded by an optional but recommended 20–minute period of meditation. Meditation begins at 6:30 pm.

picture of Alan Senauke

The class will use a text by Alan Senauke (right): The Bodhisattva’s Embrace: Dispatches from the Frontlines of Socially Engaged Buddhism as a reference point, and Alan will be present at the class on May 20.

Hogetsu Rick Mitchell is a longtime member of the Houston Zen Community. A journalist, teacher and arts administrator, he received the Bodhisattva Precepts from Tenshin Roshi Reb Anderson in 1999.

Hozan Alan Senauke, vice–abbot of the Berkeley Zen Center, received Dharma Transmission from Sojun Roshi Mel Weitsman in 1998. From 1991 to 2001, Alan was international director of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship. More recently, he founded the Clear View Project, developing Buddhist–based resources for relief and social change. He is also an accomplished traditional folk and bluegrass musician. Alan will be at HZC May 17-21.

Cost is $90 for the 6 week series, $40 for members of HZC. Three scholarships are available, just let the Ino know that you are requesting a scholarship. Register by Paypal (below), by phone 713-869-1952, or in person at HZC.

Social Justice and Buddhism
March 19 – April 30, 2014

7 Wednesdays
6:30 – 7:30 pm
Taught by Henderson Smith

picture of Henderson Smith

Learn the fundamentals of Tai Chi and Qigong as a mind–body–breath practice and healthy self–reliance modality. This is fun practice time for those curious about the power of breath and moving meditation. Learn everyday applications and practice a natural stress relief system.

Good for those with a busy lifestyle, Tai Chi and Qigong have been evaluated by the American Medical Association and backed by extensive research. Easy to do yet effective for mental and physical wellbeing, this practice is perfect for those just beginning to exercise and even for those engaged in extreme excellence training.
All you need to participate is the mind–body–breath you were born with and the desire to access your hidden potential.

Henderson J. Smith, Jr. is an IIQTC & NQA Certified Qigong and Tai Chi Teacher.

Cost is $80 for the 7–week series, $15 for individual classes. Register by Paypal (below), by phone 713–869–1952, or call Henderson directly 713–412–2157.

Tai Chi Easy
A 6–Week Course
led by Tricia Sengetsu McFarlin
March 4 – April 15, 2014
No Class March 11
6:30 – 8:30 pm.
picture of Tricia McFarlin

Open to everyone, but especially for those who have taken the Introduction to Zen Meditation series of classes, this class is centered around a collection of Zen Master Suzuki Roshi’s dharma talks, edited by Ed Brown.

Not Always So is based on Shunryu Suzuki’s lectures and is framed in his own inimitable, allusive, paradoxical style, rich with unexpected and off–centre insights. Suzuki knew he was dying at the time of the lectures, which gives his thoughts an urgency and focus even sharper than in the earlier book. In Not Always So Suzuki once again voices Zen in everyday language with the vigour, sensitivity, and buoyancy of a true friend. Here is support and nourishment. Here is a mother and father lending a hand, but letting you find your own way. Here is guidance which empowers your freedom (or way–seeking mind), rather than pinning you down to directions and techniques.”

Tricia McFarlin (above) is the Vice–President of the Board of Directors and the Membership Director of Houston Zen Center. She holds a Ph.D. in English Literature and is an experienced meditator.

Cost is $75 for the 6 week series, $35 for members of HZC. Three scholarships are available, just let the Ino know that you are requesting a scholarship. Register by Paypal (below), by phone 713-869-1952, or in person at HZC.

Not Always So