Presentation of the monastery
The zen temple, la Gendronnière, was founded in 1980 by Master Deshimaru and his disciples who together formed the Zen International Association (AZI)
The temple is situated in the centre of France, in the region of the Loire chateaux (15km from Blois) and is easily accessible by train or car. It is made up of various buildings surrounded by a magnificent forest and small lakes on a 80 hectare domain. The site can welcome up to 350 practitioners in relative comfort. The 400 square metre dojo (meditation room) is the heart of the monastery and is where zazen (zen meditation) and ceremonies are held. A smaller dojo was also built a few years ago for daily activities.
The former chateau and its dependancies have been converted for use as accommodation or practice. A large refectory with a modern kitchen and two floors of bedrooms has increased the accommodation capacity.
These collection of buildings enables the hosting of the large summer and winter retreats, other sesshins (zen meditation retreats) during the year, conferences and important commemorative ceremonies that bring together Sôtô zen practitioners from Europe and Japan.
The vegetable garden supplies organic vegetables and a wheat field the flour for the bread oven. The forest produces wood for heating. All this enables a certain measure of independance for both energy and food and provides natural, quality produce. Above all these different activities enable the regular practice of samu, serving the community, which is meditation in action - the experiencing of zen in daily life.
The different retreats
Every month sesshins are organised at La Gendronnière temple. Teaching is provided by the most experienced disciples of the founding master Taisen Deshimaru. In parallel thematic retreats mixing learning a skill or discipline with zen meditation have been developed : "Doigts d'or", "L'esprit du geste", "Arts et santé", etc
The temple La Gendronnière is a place of discovery and development of Sôtô Zen practice. Beginners are the subject of particular attention and receive numerous explanations to help them integrate.
50 years zen in Europe ( 1967 - 2017 )
Important celebrations at Zen Tempel La Gendronnière ( France ) in may 2017... Memories...