Valley Dragon Zen is devoted to providing a reliable place in Albuquerque for people to sit together in silence and peace. Our primary activity is the practice of zazen, or silent contemplation, specifically as presented in the teachings of Eihei Dogen (1200-1252), and Shunryu Suzuki (1904-1971), but also in other contemplative traditions. In zazen, we just sit, without expectation of a particular result; we are oriented by the recognition that joyfully settling in silent stillness, particularly with others, can itself be ennobling and healing.
We minimize traditional formality in favor of just creating a supportive environment for people to come together and abide, alone together.
Our name derives from our location in the heart of the Rio Grande Valley. Gu Shen, Chinese for “Valley Spirit”, is an ideal upheld by the traditions from which Zen emerges. It is described as ever receptive, ever nourishing, cool and compassionately responsive. Across East Asia, dragons benevolently represent the vibrant yang (or active) principle, and enlightening beings of various sorts can also be deemed “dragons” to designate their vitality and wisdom. We respectfully connect ourselves to this idea of places where dragons just gather to practice being dragons – free from dogma, ideology, or manipulation.
Ethics Statement and Policy:
We come mainly to just sit peacefully together, and to talk sometimes. We own no property, and are unaffiliated with any other organization. With these facts in mind, we suggest:
If someone does something illegal, call the cops.
If someone does something you don’t like, courageously and respectfully talk to them about it. Don’t gossip.
If you feel like you can’t talk to them about it, ask for help from someone you trust, or simply vote with your feet.
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