The Sanshin Zen Community was founded as a corporate body in 1996, and its dojo established in Iowa City, Iowa, under the guidance of Shohaku Okumura and Taiken Yokoyama. Following that, thanks to the efforts of its members, the land in Bloomington, Indiana, where it is presently located, was purchased in 2001, and construction work began in winter of the next year. By August 2003, all Community activity had moved to Bloomington. In 2005, the Community received approval from the Soto school of Buddhism as an overseas temple, and accordingly is now able to fulfill its role as an official center for annual practice retreats.
Sanshin Temple presently has 14 monks, four of whom live in a rented apartment nearby, taking part in daily zen meditation, monthly intensive zen meditation sessions and training retreats. The others live in locations throughout the United States and in other countries including Japan, France, and Colombia in South America. They come to Sanshin Temple whenever possible to continue their practice of Buddhist austerities. Practitioners of zen meditation in numerous other countries: throughout the USA and Canada, and from Europe and South America, also make up a growing international sangha.
The dojo is furthering its activities as one based on the shikantaza teachings of Ichibutsu-ryoso (the Buddha and Japan’s two most prominent Buddhist teachers), Kodo Sawaki Roshi, and Kosho Uchiyama Roshi. Future plans are to establish a permanent dedicated zen hall, and lodging facilities for participants in practice retreats and full-time zen practitioners.
Click on the national flags on the map, or on those at the left, to zoom to each country and see a list of its temples.