Information & Resources

(NEW!) We have created a Branching Streams list-serve (using Google Groups) that will be available to Branching Streams members. You will more easily be able to share resources, request information from other sanghas, and work together on issues of mutual concern. If you would like to join this separate group email list, please sign up here. You do not need a
Google account or gmail address to join, any email will work. If you have any questions, please contact Jon Voss, Branching Streams webmaster, directly.

Resources for using Zoom and other online platforms during the global pandemic Please see our Zoom resources intended to help you bring your gatherings online.

statue of Buddha on roof of City Center
Photo by Shundo David Haye

Services and Ceremonies:  From San Francisco Zen Center’s website, click here for:
(1) audio recordings of various morning services and the Full Moon Ceremony;
(2) daily sutras, verses, and texts in PDF format;
(3) special ekos (dedications of merit);

and click here to listen to temple sounds

Ethical Principles and the Sixteen Buddhist Precepts: Guidelines adopted by the San Francisco Zen Center.

Guidelines adopted by Kannon Do Sangha

Guidelines adopted by Mountain Rain Zen Community

Communication Protocol for Conflicts: A new document from the San Francisco Zen Center.

San Francisco Zen Center Bookstore: Books and more. Zafus, zabutons, and SFZC incense, when purchased for affiliate sangha use, are available for the sangha to purchase at cost (plus shipping). Other bookstore items, when purchased for affiliate sangha use, are available at a 20% discount (plus shipping).

Also, SFZC’s 10% member discount is extended to all members of affiliate sanghas for items purchased for individual use.

Robes and Clothing: Mo Ferrell at Chapel Hill Zen Center in North Carolina sews custom robes for priest and lay people. E-mail her or call 919-732-3178.

More Clothing Resources: Zen StitcheryMatsumotoya (Japan–source for Japanese made priest robes); Great Eastern Imports.

Incense and Charcoal: Two sources for online ordering of incense and charcoal: AsakichiJapan Incense

Dharma Supplies: Two sources for online dharma supplies: Great Eastern Imports, Monastery Store

Bells: This Pure Land store in Portland, OR has a large collection of Japanese bells, all sizes.

Oryoki bowls: Peter Goettler, a ceramic artist and Zen student in Germany, makes sets of earthenware oryoki bowls. He is able to ship them to the U.S. and elsewhere. Here is the link to his webpage.

Sewing Classes and Retreats at SFZC:

  • Instruction in sewing Buddha’s robe and sewing kits are offered at San Francisco Zen Center. For information on ongoing classes or retreats, ordering a rakusu kit, and online instructions for sewing, please see Sewing Buddha’s Robe on the SFZC website.
  • Jean Selkirk’s excellent instructional booklet on sewing Buddha’s robe is available to order on this website. Jean Selkirk is the primary sewing teacher at Berkeley Zen Center.
  • Rakusu Kits also available: Kyosho Valorie Beer, head of Harmonious Spirit Affiliate sangha is offering to provide Rakusu kits. They contain all pieces necessary to make a rakusu and envelope. Valorie can be reached at Kits are available in blue, black, brown and green.  Black and brown kits also include okesa envelope fabric.  Kits do not include thread.


Opportunities to stay and practice at San Francisco Zen Center: City Center San FranciscoGreen Gulch Farm; Tassajara Zen Mountain Center.

Opportunities for work practice apprenticeships at City Center San Francisco

Alternative Postures for People With PainDescription of alternative postures (with photos) for chair sitting, lying down, and kinhin, from Beata Chapman (postures developed by Darlene Cohen and Victoria Austin).

When Blossoms Fall — A Zen Guide for Death and DyingRead the booklet here.

Useful Links to Other Zen Organizations:
American Zen Teacher’s Association
Soto Zen Buddhist Association
Lay Zen Teacher’s Association
Shogaku Zen Institute