All posts by stonecreek



The posts below include dharma talks offered at Stone Creek Zen Center. To listen to a talk, you can use the player embedded in each post by clicking on the play button which looks like this:
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In addition to browsing these pages, you can navigate the collection of dharma talks (over 500 talks) using the functions in the right sidebar:

1. The “Dharma Talk Tag Cloud” can be used to select talks by topic or theme.

2. The “Dharma Talks Archive” can be used to find talks by date.

3. “Dharma Talk Speakers” can be used to select talks by a given speaker.



Guest Speaker: Konjin Gaelyn Godwin – Sunday August 2

10 am

Konjin Gaelyn Godwin is abbot of Houston Zen Center and Director of the International Division of Soto Zen, North America (a department of Soto Zen Headquarters based in Japan). She received ordination as a Zen Priest in 1991, from Tenshin Reb Anderson, and Dharma Transmission in 2003. She is Dojin’s ordination and dharma transmission teacher.

May My Mind Be Kind

Dharma talk for July 19, 2020 by Onryu Mary Stares: May My Mind Be Kind

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Urgency and Patience

Dharma talk for July 12, 2020 by Dojin Sarah Emerson: Urgency and Patience

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Coming Down to this Earth

Dharma talk for July 5,  2020 by Korin Charlie Pokorny: Coming Down to this Earth

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Racial Literacy and Dharma Inquiry Group – Next Meeting August 26 6-8 pm on Zoom

6:00 – 8:00 pm

All people are raised with cultural conditioning around race. If we were raised in the U.S., and especially if we identify as “white” or “European-descended,” our conditioning tends to include a value for colorblindness, which can make it difficult for to acknowledge, let alone investigate, our racial conditioning and biases. This book group is intended to expand our racial literacy, as Micheal Eric Dyson puts it, to develop a more intimate understanding together of racial oppression and the suffering it causes across color lines in the U.S., and to engage this as our practice in Zen of turning towards suffering as the gate of awakening and liberation.

Pre-registration for the group is requested each month, so that everyone can have the page assignments, articles, and to consider the agreements before each meeting.

To register, or for more information please email:

Facilitated by: Hoka Chris Fortin and Dojin Sarah Emerson

The two teachers facilitating the group identify as white, U.S. citizens, and Zen Buddhist priests. We understand the limitations of our experiences in relation to race, and strive to bring cultural humility to our facilitation of these groups.


Next Meeting: Wednesday August 26 6-8 pm:

           My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menaken



July 2020: White Rage by Carol Anderson

June 2020: Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Hall Kimmerer

March and April 2020: The Inner Work of Racial Justice by Rhonda Magee

February 2020:  There There by Tommy Orange.

December 2019 and January 2020: How to be Anti-Racist by Ibram X Kendi

November 2019:

American Sutra by Duncan Ryuken Williams

AND The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates


October 2020: Cancelled due to evacuations- will cover American Sutra in November


September/Summer 2019:


This summer, we want to empower the group to set out some on your own to find resources: books, articles, films, etc. that support us in broadening beyond perspectives of privilege and disrupting our acculturated racism.  So the challenge is to do some research (online or in community…or both!) and read (at least) one non-fiction book, one fiction book, one article, and watch at least one video that supports and fosters your racial literacy and dharma inquiry.

Please email the group what you are reading/ watching, so that we can compile a list collectively (it’s fine if several people read/ watch the same thing).
Then, in September, each of us will synthesize for the group what we watched/ read and how it impacted us.

In case you would like somewhere to start, here are links to just a few antiracist reading/ resource lists:
Antiracist reading/ resource lists

From Goodreads:

By Ibram X Kendi in NY Times:

From White Awake (includes articles and videos):

From Powell’s Books:

From Charis Books (more scholastic):

A reading list For Gov. Ralph Northum by Ibram X Kendi:

And, in addition to these lists, a couple of specific suggestions:

Book: American Genocide: The United States and the California Indian Catastrophe, 1846-1873 by Benjamin Madley

and Video: “When they see us” an mini-series directed by Ava DuVernay about the “Central Park Five”
available on Netflix-



June 2019:  The reading for June will be “Parable of the Sower” by Octavia Butler, the fifth chapter of “White Fragility” by Robin DeAngelo and “The Case for Reparations” by Ta-Nehisi Coates.


May 2019 readings: Book: “Awakening Together” by Larry Yang, Chapter 4 of “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo, and Rev angel Kyodo williams’ article, “Your Liberation is on the Line.”

April 2019 readings: “The Way of Tenderness” by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel and the third chapter of “White Fragility” by Robin DeAngelo.

March 2019 readings: Becoming by Michelle Obama

review first two chapters of White Fragility

article: “Your Liberation is on the Line” by angel Kyodo williams in Buddhadharma magazine, Spring 2019

February 2019 Book:  The 57 Bus by Dashka Slate.

January 2019 book: White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo.

December 2018 book: Kindred by Octavia Butler.

Book for November 2018: Unaccompanied by Javier Zamora.

Book for Oct. 2018: Mindful of Race by Ruth King

Book for Sept. 2018 : summer reading (see below)


Summer Reading:For July and August, we are suggesting three books: one non-fiction, one fiction, and one Dharma and Race specific.

For the Summer Reading, we are asking that everyone read at least one book…and all three if possible
The New Jim Crow, by Michelle Alexander
Now and then a book comes along that might in time touch the public and educate social commentators, policymakers, and politicians about a glaring wrong that we have been living with that we also somehow don’t know how to face. The New Jim Crow: Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness…is such a work.” -The New York Review of Books
Beloved, by Toni Morrison
Puliter Prize winner for fiction in 1986.A New York Times survey of writers and literary critics ranked it the best work of American fiction from 1981 to 2006. This novel looks at the family of Sethe in the aftermath of escaping slavery.

Radical Dharma, by Rev. angel Kyodo williams, Lama Rod Owens, and Dr. Jasmine Syedullah
Igniting a long-overdue dialogue about how the legacy of racial injustice and white supremacy plays out in society at large and Buddhist communities in particular, this urgent call to action outlines a new dharma that takes into account the ways that racism and privilege prevent our collective awakening.


June 2018: When They Call You a Terrorist by Patrice Khan-Cullors and asha bandale

May 2018: Homegoing by Ya’a Gyasi

April 2018: So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

March 2018: Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward and instead of an article, we are asking members to watch the film “I Am Not Your Negro” (available through PBS and streaming through Amazon)

 February 2018 Waking Up White by Peggy Irving

It was decided by the January group that going forward we will read one book per month, so beginning in Feb. and going forward we will read the whole book for each meeting.

January 2018Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

December 2017: Tears We Cannot Stop: a Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson pages 123-end
article: “We’re Still Here”
November/December 2017: Tears We Cannot Stop: a Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson

November 8, 2017: pages 1-123

and article: “Waking Up to Whiteness” by Greg Snyder






Silouette Buddha

The Dharma of being Anti-Racist: Accessing Skillful Engagement

ONLINE: 16-weeks Class

Mondays: Aug. 3 – Nov. 23 (no meeting Labor Day, Sept. 7) 7 – 8:30 pm

with Rev. Liên Shutt, Dojin Sarah Emerson, Korin Charlie Porkony, and Patrick Brown

Would you like to have skillful ways to be in the midst of this critical time?

If so, the teachings of the 8-Fold Path directly shows us how we can use our wisdom & heart-mind training to support our behaviors with these qualities:

Wisdom in:

  • Skillful Understanding / View

  • Skillful Thought / Motivation

Enacted through Heart-Mind trainings/meditations & practices in:

  • Skillful Effort

  • Skillful Mindfulness

  • Skillful Concentration

To foster behaviors of:

  • Skillful Speech

  • Skillful Action

  • Skillful Livelihood

These 8 aspects are taught as ways to live an intentional life of non-harming. Each week you’ll be presented with traditional & social justice-oriented contemporary frames to understand & apply these aspects in real & every day ways. You’ll be able to learn & practice how they make sense for you in your life now & not just as theories & concepts.

Inquiring into, understanding, and responding to the causes & conditions that have brought about our collective suffering of racism, this course will offer a variety of instructional/guided meditations, reflective writings, and mindfulness practices along with interactive exercises to support grounding, settledness, & wise action. Connecting to how you have agency/power (in yourself & with your communities) in the midst of racial conditioning is the best “medicine” for these times. We’ll practice skills for staying in discomfort & resilience through cultivating an open-hearted intimacy with suffering, invoking anti-racism to have impact in the world.

Class format will alternate between a session of teachings & a home practice assignment (attended by everyone) with a week to discuss what came up for you in the home practice that week (small groups to foster brave-space intimacy: one for people of color & one for white people).


  • 8 Mindful Steps to Happiness by Bhante Gunaratana

  • Radical Dharma by williams, Owens, and Syedullah

  • White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo (for white-identified)

(Not included. Some scholarships for books available. Please request in your “Basics” application form.)

Suggested books:

  • How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi

  • Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park Hong

  • The Inner Work of Racial Justice by Rhonda Magee

Open to those who acknowledge systemic racism & are committed to open engagement in examining the impact of being part of such a structure. Open to all levels of practice. A variety of meditations will be available.

Sangha-Determined Noble-Giving sliding-scale guide: (with income -match guide)

  • Pay-it-Forward: $480 for series (> $75K)

  • Standard: $400 for series ($35 -$75K)

  • Limited Income: $320 for series (< $35K)

  • No one turned away for lack of funds due to economic hardship

PayPal giving to:

Early registration is encouraged as we will cap the class at 40 participants. Registration does not ensure acceptance as we are creating equal access of 50% POCs and 50% whites.

Registration is open until July 13 or when capacity is reached. Early registration is encouraged

Please through the form at the bottom of this page to receive your “Basics” application form:



Dharma *is* Justice

Dharma talk for June 28,  2020 by Myoen Joan Amaral: Dharma *is* Justice

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Myozen Joan Amaral moved to the Boston area in 2012 from San Francisco Zen Center to serve as guiding teacher for the Marblehead Zen Center. In 2014 the Zen Center relocated to Beverly and in 2016 changed its name to Zen Center North Shore.

Joan is a dharma heir of Zenkei Blanche Hartman in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki, Roshi. Her interest in zazen grew out of a background in modern dance and she continues to be interested in the ways that movement and the cultivation of energy can support the practice of stillness.

Joan trained at Tassajara Zen Mountain Monastery for six years. While in residency at San Francisco Zen Center, she formed a dharma group – Dharma en Español – devoted to studying Suzuki Roshi’s Zen Mind, Beginners Mind in Spanish (Mente Zen, Mente de Principiante), in order to provide the opportunity for native Spanish speakers to hear the dharma in their own language. While in San Francisco, she led meditation classes at the County Jail where she also provided one-on-one spiritual counseling for prisoners.

She is a graduate of Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and also completed the chaplaincy program at the Sati Center in Redwood City, CA, where she studied with Gil Fronsdal, Paul Haller, and Jennifer Block.

Her primary focus as a Zen priest, meditation teacher, sangha leader, and community activist, is on the dynamic relationship between formal practice and everyday, messy human life. In recent times she has been exploring the relationship of zazen and social justice, self-care, and creativity as a path of true happiness.

While the zendo is closed, we will live stream our Sunday Dharma talk at 10:30am PST

Meditation from 10-1030am PST on the same zoom link (see below).

Click here to access Sunday talks livestreamed on our Youtube “channel”.

We will also be streaming the talks through Zoom. Please send an email for the Zoom meeting room link.