The Great Way Is Not Difficult

Zhaozhou taught, “’The great way isn’t difficult if you don’t pick and choose.’ As soon as I speak,
you’ll think, ‘That’s picking and choosing,’ or ‘That’s clear.’ But I don’t identify with clarity. Can you live like that?”
A student asked, “If you don’t identify with clarity, what do you live by?”
“I don’t know.”

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PZI Events Calendar

W E L C O M E  to the PZI Events Calendar! Here you will find all upcoming events and registration links for PZI Zen Online retreats, sesshins, and weekly meditations & talks. Search by individual event, day, or month. Save to your Google Calendar or iCal Calendar. No experience required to participate. Questions? Contact


Sunday Zen with Guest Host Jesse Cardin: August 21st

Weekly Meditation & Talks: Monday – Thursday, join us

Alternating Tuesdays: PZI Talk LIVE! with Gaffney & Hitchcock return in September

Upcoming Retreats: Open Mind w John Tarrant & Tess Beasley

Open Temple: August 1st – September 30th

Next Sesshin: Door After Door Opening Inside w John Tarrant & Friends, October 4-9



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LIVE IN PERSON An Open Mind Retreat in Bolinas, CA: Each Time You Carry Me This Way – Koans & Dreams with John Tarrant & Tess Beasley

August 18 @ 5:30 pm - August 21 @ 12:00 pm

$825 – $1025

REGISTRATION: contact Sacha Kawaichi

A Pacific Zen Institute Open Mind Retreat
with John Tarrant & Tess Beasley

August 18th – 21st, 2022
Thursday Eve through Sunday Noon
at the magical Commonweal Center in 
Bolinas, CA


Dreams and koans are our intimate friends, they open gates we had not seen, and we stroll into splendid, unfamiliar gardens. 

Everyone has their own light, it gives us life;
it is handed along in the dark, mind to mind, heart to heart.
Dreams too appear in mysterious ways,
and we are in those dreams,
and all the time the world is dreaming us,
and bearing us in its arms.

Songs come from dreams, koans appear in dreams, and dreams in koans. Ancient teachers turn up and bless us or argue with us, monsters chase us and befriend us, and in every case we can turn toward the is-ness, beauty and strangeness.

Dreams and koans can indicate lineage or a direction in life, or ways to address great questions. We can’t explain them but even a fragment of an image of a yellow vase colors the day.

They show us a new path to the marvelous.

The woman on the white horse ambles among the trees just ahead of us
and no matter how much we hurry, we can’t catch up.
A white horse appears in pale red flowers.
We watch the tracks of flying birds.

Yangshan went to the Buddha’s place in a dream and was asked to teach. A teacher was asked, “What about the ones who neither come nor go?” He said, “The stone woman calls them back from their dream of the world.” 

Join us, we’re looking forward to it, and there are limited numbers, so sign up early.

—John Tarrant and Tess Beasley

About PZI Open Mind Retreats

Pacific Zen Institute’s Open Mind retreats come out of our impulse to make a Zen meditation retreat that is native to American culture. When we take away the barriers to understanding, things just naturally shine.

This is a residential retreat held in a beautiful place on the ocean with a simple feel, and wonderful food.

There will be sitting together, koans, teaching, walking on the beach, poetry, conversation, writing and time to find out what our lives might be like without our usual stories. We will do exercises that help our attention to deepen. We will make discoveries and our lives will open.

This is a retreat that people find has a powerful effect on their lives and their understanding, both of the practice of the inner life and of the world of work and personal interaction. It has the deep strength of an intensive meditation retreat inside a form that works for people with all different levels of meditation experience. It has a flexible schedule that makes it work well for those who would like to bring a partner or a friend.

No particular background in spiritual practice is required.

Bring a notebook. Also, if you want to paint or draw or play an instrument you can bring your gear.

Members Shared Room (double): $825
Non-members Shared Room (double): $875

Members Single Room: $1025
Non-members Single Room: $1075

Commonweal Center, 451 Mesa Rd, Bolinas, CA 94924

Dates and Times:
Begins Thursday, August 18th at 5:30 p.m. PDT
Ends Sunday, August 21st at 12:00 p.m. PDT

Our registrar is

Click registration link to get more details, including Covid guidelines:



August 18 @ 5:30 pm
August 21 @ 12:00 pm
$825 – $1025
Event Category:


451 Mesa Road
Bolinas, CA 94924 United States
(415) 868-0970


John Tarrant & Tess Beasley