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Radiant Light: teachings of Dogen Zenji

  • Mountain Rain Zendo 2016 Wall Street Vancouver, BC, V5L 1J5 Canada (map)
Once, in a formal dharma discourse, the great teacher, Yunmen, ascended the teaching seat and said to the assembly, “Each and every person without exception has the radiant light. When looked for, it cannot be seen and is obscured in total darkness. What is the radiant light existing in all people?”
— Dogen Zenji

Dogen Zenji brought Soto Zen practice from China to Japan in the thirteenth century. His writings have come to be known world-wide for their poetic and paradoxical language, and penetrating depth. Studying Dogen together we can widen and deepen our perspectives on practice. 

This retreat will focus intensively on Dogen Zenji's text Komyo or "Radiant Light". In this text Dogen discusses the radiant light that illuminates all delusion just as the moon illuminates the ground on a clear night. This radiant light permeates all of the human condition showing the oneness of all things with shining clarity. Dogen encourages us to ask, “What is the radiant light existing in all people?” We will explore the text in community, and  apply Dogen's teachings to our zazen practice and everyday lives.

The retreat will include periods of zazen (sitting meditation), kinhin (walking meditation), two dharma talks each day, small and large group discussion, and reflective writing or art. 

Everyone welcome, whether you are new to Zen practice or experienced.

About the Teacher: Shinmon Michael Newton is a Zen Buddhist priest and co-guiding teacher of Mountain Rain Zen Community. He first encountered Dogen’s teachings when practicing with Shohaku Okumura Roshi in Kyoto, Japan in the mid-1980s and has continued to find them wonderfully inexhaustible.

Schedule:  Saturday 9:00 AM - 4:30 Sunday: 9:00 - 12:15

Saturday 2:00-4:00 Priest ordination ceremony for Kakuko Kaye Simard. Everyone welcome. Reception to follow.

We will eat lunch in silence together. Please bring a bag/box lunch, and a mug for tea on Saturday. A light lunch will be served on Sunday.


  • Full-time attendance: $60

  • Saturday attendance: $40

  • Sunday morning: $20

  • For those on a limited income, reduced fees are available. Please complete the Weekend Retreat Reduced Fee Request form (click the link to access the form). No one will turned away for lack of funds.

  • Your additional donation beyond the retreat fee supports Mountain Rain’s capacity to offer reduced fees to those on limited income. Thank you!


Teacher Dana

Retreat fees only cover expenses. There will be an opportunity to give a donation/dana to the teacher at the retreat. 


If you have questions or concerns, please contact the registrar at


2019 Dogen Weekend Retreat
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