Training of Zen priests and lay leaders
The training of Zen priests and lay leaders: As a Soto Zen priest with Dharma Transmission in the line of Shunryu Suzuki, Zoketsu ordains and works with Buddhist priests in the Bay Area group and out of town. The ordination and training of priests is a personal matter of deep discernment: though there are no set requirements, nor any set definition of the training, most priests practice steadily and faithfully for many years before ordination, and continue for many years after. Most will have practiced for some period of time in a temple or monastery. Zoketsu also works closely with lay practitioners who receive lay Buddhist initiation, usually after many years of practice and close relationship. Priests and lay practitioners who complete training as head monk of a practice period (Everyday Zen Practice Periods are held most years in all the locations where Zoketsu teaches) become Zen teachers. After years of teachings under Zoketsus guidance some teachers receive Dharma Transmission (priests) or Lay Entrustment (lay). For more about the inner meaning of these commitments and relationships see Zoketsu's dharma talk On Commitment. See also the chapters in Taking Our Places on Vowing and Ethical Conduct.