To study Zen is to study the self”

„To study Zen is to study the self“ is the most well-known teaching by Dogen Zenji, the 13th century founder of the Soto Zen-School.
The entire quote is:
“To study Zen is to study the self; to study the self is to forget the self; to forget the self is to be enlightened by myriad things; this enlightenment leaves no trace behind, and this no-trace continues everywhere.”
During this weekend we will study the self in sitting zazen (meditation); we will try to understand how this practice of sitting is in itself „forgetting the self“, is enlightenment. But Zen is not restricted to sitting meditation. Zen also works with precepts (ethical conduct) and ceremonies. We will look at these practices and explore and discuss their benefit for our daily lives.

The retreat is open to everyone – no prior meditation experience or knowledge of Buddhist teachings is required. Bernd will speak English with Greek translation if necessary. First timers will receive a detailed meditation introduction on Friday evening.��

Friday 7-10 p.m (free entrance)
Introduction to Zen Meditation

Saturday & Sunday 11a.m–6p.m (40€ both days or 25€ / day)
Zazen (meditation), dharma talks, one-on-one meetings if wished for: �
Scholarships for reduced course fees are available from Zen Center Athens. In this case, please write or speak to us.�Please register by sending an email to: [email protected]

Bernd Bender has practiced Zen since 1987. He went to California in 1994 to continue his studies at San Francisco Zen Center. He received Dharma Transmission (authorization to teach) from Dairyu Michael Wenger and is a lineage holder of Soto-Zen. In 2012 he moved to Berlin, where he offers Zen practice, teaches courses in meditation and Buddhist thought, lectures, and accompanies people on their spiritual paths.�Several times a year he comes to Athens to support people in their Zen practice. Bernd studied literature and philosophy in Frankfurt and Berkeley.��