Our Programs

We offer a variety of meditation and practice opportunities throughout the year. Please visit our schedule for specifics on dates and times for our upcoming events.

Photo of facade of Ancient Dragon Zen Gate

Weekly Zazen at our Zendo

We meet for zazen (zen meditation) at several times during the week at our temple. All are welcome. If you have not practiced Buddhist meditation before, please attend a meditation instruction on Sunday morning at 8:45 am. This instruction is required before attending our meditation events. If you can not come on Sunday please contact us for alternate times.

Monday Evening Zazen and Dharma Talk

Monday evenings we sit one thirty five minute period of zen meditation and then conduct a brief service in the Soto Zen style which includes the chanting of traditional Zen texts. A Dharma talk and group discussion follows.

Wednesday Morning Zazen

Wednesday mornings we meet for zen meditation at 7 am, followed by an optional short service with chanting. All are welcome to attend.

Thursday Evening Zazen

Thursday evenings we have two forty minute periods of zen meditation with walking meditation in between. It is fine to attend one or both of the sitting periods. On some Thursday evenings we host special events instead of zen meditation, so please consult our schedule for details.

Sunday Morning Zazen, Meditation Instruction, and Dharma Talk

Sunday mornings start with meditation instruction at 8:45 am for people without prior Buddhist meditation experience. Please note that there will be no meditation instruction on Sundays when we have special sittings. Please consult the schedule for details. We then have a period of zen meditation at 9:30 am, followed by a Dharma talk and discussion at 10:15 am. The Dharma talk is always open to the public (even when there is a special meditation event).

Meditation and Recovery Program

Our Meditation and Recovery program occurs every Tuesday, 7:15 - 8:30 pm. This weekly meeting will feature sitting and discussion, to assist those in recovery from addictive substances and behavior patterns. For information contact Angie via [email protected]. Everyone is Welcome, regardless of prior experience in meditation; No pre-registration required and any donation will be accepted.

Photo of Rockefeller Chapel

Weekly Zazen in Hyde Park

In addition to our programs at our temple on Chicago's north side, we offer zen meditation on Wednesdays in beautiful Rockefeller Chapel on the University of Chicago campus in Hyde Park. Meditation begins at 5:30 pm and meditation instruction is available at 5:00 pm for those who are new to the practice. This practice opportunity is offered in partnership with Rockefeller Chapel's Spiritual Life Office.


We offer half, one, and three day sesshins (meditation retreats). Sesshins include multiple periods of zen meditation with walking meditation in-between and Dharma talks. Dokusan (individual practice discussion with Taigen) is available for one-day or longer sittings. Our sesshins also include optional Oryoki.

Practice Commitment Period

We are offering an eight week Spring Practice Commitment Period from April 1st to June 3rd, 2018 with a focus on the Models of Bodhisattva Practice: Faces of Compassion. This nonresidential practice commitment period is an opportunity to integrate and develop sustainable practice in our everyday lives and echoes the ancient Buddhist tradition of intentional community practice. You can read more about the Practice Commitment Period.

Seminars and Classes

Ancient Dragon Zen Gate sponsors seminars and classes given by Taigen and other teachers. Topics and times vary by event.