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Teaching Resources


Dharma Mirror

Dharma Mirror


The Manual of Practice Forms for the Kwan Um School of Zen:


Download The Dharma Mirror PDF

Dharma Teacher Training Guidelines

Dharma Teacher Training Guidelines



We dedicate this booklet to Zen Master Seung Sahn. It is a tribute to his teaching, a tribute to his relentless efforts to help us to see the way and consequently to help others. I can see him now, straightening the cushions, correcting our chanting, encouraging us to go on as many retreats as possible. How many times did I hear him shout, “Time will not wait for you! Nobody guarantees your life!”

He also always said this practice is “not only for me.” Learning the forms, attending retreats, staying in close contact with your guiding teacher are the foundations of our practice. Let us never assume we already understand this. I trust we will all continue to bow very deeply to Zen Master Seung Sahn’s memory and to his instructions.

It is not a coincidence that the sutras and other suggested readings are in the last section. This rich tradition insists on live speech, direct understanding: “A special transmission outside the sutras.” A slow cultivation and understanding of the teachings of past teachers can be skillfully used to touch the hearts and minds of our wide sangha.

This manual is offered to you. Use it well. Know when to open it, know when to close it. Try, try, try, for ten thousand years, non-stop. – Zen Master Soeng Hyang, School Zen Master

Dharma Teacher Training Guidelines booklet (PDF).

Index to the Compass of Zen

Index to the Compass of Zen





Sayings of Zen Master Kyong Ho

Sayings of Zen Master Kyong Ho



Zen Master Kyong Ho (1849-1912) was the Great-grandteacher of Zen Master Seung Sahn


Don’t wish for perfect health. In perfect health there is greed and wanting. So an ancient said, “Make good medicine from the suffering of sickness.”

Don’t hope for a life without problems. An easy life results in a judgmental and lazy mind. So an ancient once said, “Accept the anxieties and difficulties of this life.”

Don’t expect your practice to be always clear of obstacles. Without hindrances the mind that seeks enlightenment may be burnt out. So an ancient once said, “Attain deliverance in disturbances.”

Don’t expect to practice hard and not experience the weird. Hard practice that evades the unknown makes for a weak commitment. So an ancient once said, “Help hard practice by befriending every demon.”

Don’t expect to finish doing something easily. If you happen to acquire something easily the will is made weaker. So an ancient once said, “Try again and again to complete what you are doing.”

Make friends but don’t expect any benefit for yourself. Friendship only for oneself harms trust. So an ancient once said, “Have an enduring friendship with purity in heart.”‘ Don’t expect others to follow your direction. When it happens that others go along with you, it results in pride. So an ancient once said, “Use your will to bring peace between people.”

Expect no reward for an act of charity. Expecting something in return leads to a scheming mind. So an ancient once said, “Throw false spirituality away like a pair of old shoes.”

Don’t seek profit over and above what your work is worth. Acquiring false profit makes a fool (of oneself). So an ancient once said, “Be rich in honesty.” Don’t try to make clarity of mind with severe practice. Every mind comes to hate severity, and where is clarity in mortification? So an ancient once said, “Clear a passageway through severe practice.”

Be equal to every hindrance. Buddha attained Supreme Enlightenment without hindrance. Seekers after truth are schooled in adversity. When they are confronted by a hindrance, they can’t be over-come. Then, cutting free, their treasure is great.

...from THOUSAND PEAKS: Korean Zen, Tradition and Teachers by Mu Soeng (Primary Point Press, revised, edition 1991)
Temple Rules

Temple Rules


(As used in our Zen centers)




The Four Great Vows

The Four Great Vows



These vows are recited in morning practice before bows, and at the end of the evening during retreats.


1. Sentient beings are numberless. We vow to save them all.
2. Delusions are endless. We vow to cut through them all.
3. The teachings are infinite. We vow to learn them all.
4. The Buddha Way is inconceivable. We vow to attain it.
The Human Route

The Human Route



Coming empty-handed, going empty-handed – that is human.
When you are born, where do you come from?
When you die, where do you go?
Life is like a floating cloud which appears.
Death is like a floating cloud which disappears.
The floating cloud itself originally does not exist.
Life and death, coming and going, are also like that.
But there is one thing which always remains clear.
It is pure and clear, not depending on life and death.

Then what is the one pure and clear thing?
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