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Gabriel Orozco – My Hands Are My Heart (1991)
The Heart of Perfect Wisdom

A workshop on Zen and the Heart of Meditation
with John Tarrant in Santa Barbara
June 26, 2016

In a well that has not been dug,
water from no source ripples

“Where Do Songs Come From?” – A Meditation Retreat with John Tarrant

August 18-21, 2016
Commonweal Center, Bolinas, CA

One night in the Outback of Australia, a singer was sleeping.

UC logo fromJack 1
Introducing Uncertainty Club

A magazine of Zen and the arts
from the Pacific Zen Institute

Fresh from the Pacific Zen Institute’s long-running project on Zen, koans, consciousness, and the arts, comes the very first issue of a brand new online magazine – Uncertainty Club.

Cai Guo-Qiang, “Heritage,” 2013
The Linji Koans: Confidence in the Light Inside

A Summer Retreat in Santa Cruz
with John Tarrant and Friends
June 12-19, 2016

A light shines in all of us, and in all things. This light appears as appreciation, or as a sense of surprise, or just as an observation of the way things glow, when we see them clearly. And this light is available all the time, no matter who you are.

The Creative Life and Meditation

A Retreat with John Tarrant
September 16 – 18, 2016
The Garrison Institute, NY

The first thing about creativity is not thinking what you are already thinking. It comes from making space, from not knowing, from playing.

Featured Articles

How To Practice Zen Koans

An Article by John Tarrant
“A koan is a little healing story, a conversation, an image, a fragment of a song. …


The Tea Lady and the Fox

Women who ran tea houses in China appear often in Zen koans and stories. The tea lady often holds the role of the trickster, cleverly disguised as not-a-teacher, magically making certainty disappear.


The World Catches Us Every Time

An article by John Tarrant Published in the April/May 2014 edition of Shambhala Sun
    Abiding nowhere, the heart comes forth        – …

Memberships & Donations

We are grateful to you. You make what we do possible.


Read John Tarrant's 2015 year-end letter here.

You can view our 2015 Art Card here.

Upcoming Retreat Dates

Our annual calendars for traditional long retreats and Open Mind retreats are available at this link to facilitate advance planning: Save The Dates.


Far away from a PZI center? We use LiveStream to bring live video talks and discussions to our greater community. Archived streams are also available below.

PZI Livestream

Creating a Culture

Our PZI mission is to create a culture
for the transformation of consciousness through meditation, koans, inquiry, conversation and the arts.

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