The Alliance reaches out to the public through teaching, writing, and retreats, offering this vision of the human role in the community of life, grounded in the tangible reality of holding and caring for the shared land.

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The farm supports the Alliance and the Zen Community, offering a place for spiritual practice, a home for the work of protection and restoration, and food for residents, volunteers, and sharing.


The practice of awakening is one with the practice of transforming the earth which is our true body. A study and practice group meets at the Northfield Buddhist Meditation Center.


Words From My Teacher

Our lives are patterns of the fabric produced by the loom of time and space.

When we see the individual things, each one is impermanent, constantly changing, without any fixed independent entity.

But this work of weaving continues. Our life is a result and a gift from people and things from the past.

What we do now influences later generations, whether positively or negatively.

The loom is weaving the ancient brocade of eternity, while the spring is new, fresh and different each year.

The spring of the entire heaven and earth is manifested within a tiny plum blossom in the cold air.

The tiny blossom actualizes the spring of the entire heaven and earth.

All individual things are working together as a whole without anything being excluded.

There is no observer and observation from outside.

~ Shohaku Okumura Roshi

Shohaku Okamura Roshi

Upcoming Events


Starts: Sun Oct 21 - 5:00 PM

16922 Cabot Avenue

This is a small gathering, 6-10 people, for conversation and a short film or recording. October’s presentation will be a series of short talks by Martín Prechtel on the subject of “Grief and Praise.” No fee, bring a potluck dish, absolutely RSVP – using this form.  (Only do the relevant parts.

  • 26
  • Oct

Starts: Fri Oct 26 - 12:00 AM

16922 Cabot Avenue

“People are not depressed, warlike, or mediocre by nature. We are ecstatic, delicious,

  • 30
  • Nov

Starts: Fri Nov 30 - 7:00 PM

16922 Cabot Avenue

SESSHIN: SIMPLIFIED ZEN MEDITATION RETREAT Friday November 30, 7 pm – Saturday December 8

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  • Feb

Starts: Fri Feb 22 - 12:00 AM

16922 Cabot Avenue

Silent meditation retreat in the Zen tradition. If you would like to come, please speak with

Newsletters and Updates

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Latest News


What’s true?

I was asked “So what is true?” These things came up immediately, in this order. I remember who said each one to me, though they’re not unique to those people. The only thing we own are our actions. – Fu Schroeder, of Green Gulch Farm. There’s nothing at all that you can rely on. – […]


Grief, loss, and tornadoes

Loss has my attention today. I was out walking the land with a dear friend that has never been here before. I came back to learn that the Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court by two votes. If both Lisa Murkowski and Joe Manchin had voted “no”, we would be looking toward a […]



I spent a month on retreat; here are notes from the first few days. Below is simple stuff including event updates and encouragement to subscribe. You should have already received notice on these events. If you haven’t, please check whether you are subscribed to updates. Go to home and scroll down. You might try checking […]



Today I’ll write about the first few days, when I drove through South Dakota, Nebraska, and stayed in the Black Hills. After that, I went to Colorado for a two-week retreat (Ecodharma Summer Camp) with Impermanent Sangha. I returned to the Black Hills, stopping first at Devils Tower (Bear Lodge), then spending 3 days in […]


There are many ways to get involved

Learn more about Mountains and Waters Alliance Membership – working to protect and restore the wholeness of life on earth. Its members include human people, rivers, rocks, trees, hills – sentient beings from all parts of the family of life. Check out ways you can Volunteer or.. Consider donating to Mountains and Waters