Sōtō Zen Chaplain

 Sōtō Zen Chaplain

Mr. Al Seiko Garrod

At the age of 18, after exploring various spiritual paths, I came home to Sōtō Zen.  In our lives we have many teachers, mine have come from many different religions, but have all been sincere, lovely people.  In 1983 I received precepts in the Order of Buddhist Contemplatives. These precepts are the vows we make about how we live and interact with others. Today I am a member of two worldwide Zen communities: the Treeleaf Sangha and The Zen Peacemakers Order.

Sōtō Zen is known as the school of meditation.  We focus on a meditation practice called Zazen.  All of life is our temple.

Treeleaf Sangha is a multicultural Zen Buddhist Community in which people of all socio-economic classes, nationalities, races, ages, creeds, genders, sexual orientation and identification, and physical abilities discover shared humanity by direct experience of one anothers’ lives. We are open to all. We commit ourselves to cultivating a practice in diversity and multiculturalism by incorporating into our practice the dissolving of all barriers that perpetuate the suffering of separation, prejudice, and discrimination.

The Zen Peacemakers Order are a community without walls, a space to practice plunging into life just as it is, leaving out nothing, leaving out no one.  We endeavour to bear witness, to see ourselves as the other and to see others as ourselves.

Our particular expression arises through the lineage and the teaching of our Zen ancestors who came before us. The ZPO commits to pass this on to those who come after us.

We practice meditation, live an ethical life, and encourage ethical businesses, care of the earth and social action as paths of awakening and service.