Compassion has no enemies. Wisdom does not give rise to vexations.
Harmonize with family, community, and the world through Harmony of your Body and Mind. Clarity in everything we do.
Founded in 1997, we are a community learning and living the Buddha’s teachings through the tradition of the Dharma Drum Lineage of Chan Buddhism, as established by our founder Chan Master Sheng Yen. Master Sheng Yen passed on to us a view of the Dharma based on his experience in the Linji and Caodong lineages of Chan.
We offer retreats, classes, and workshops that teach methods of Chan meditation rooted in ancient traditions, adapted to the needs of modern people. We offer instruction in foundational practices for beginners and opportunities for experienced practitioners to deepen their practice through silent, intensive retreats.


Ancient Roots

Chan emerged as a school of Buddhism in China around 500 AD. Chan teachings emphasize the realization and embodiment of the potential that is present everywhere, constantly manifesting itself. This tradition traces its roots through teacher-to-student affirmation of awakening back to the time of Shakyamuni Buddha in India and to the present day through the Caodong and Linji lineages (known in Japan as Soto and Rinzai).

Modern Revival: The Work of Master Sheng Yen

After years of training and study, Master Sheng Yen (b. 1931 – d. 2009) was recognized as a lineage holder in the Linji and Caodong schools of Chan. As part of his efforts to reform and revitalize Chinese Buddhism, Master Sheng Yen established the Dharma Drum Lineage in 2006 — bringing the traditional methods of practice from the Caodong and Linji traditions under one roof.

In order to bring the benefits of Chan Buddhism to people across the globe, Master Sheng Yen spent much of his later life teaching in North America, founding numerous centers, including Dharma Drum Retreat Center in 1997.

Chan in Daily Life

In the Chan tradition, we try to incorporate the Buddha’s teachings into all aspects of daily life. We apply them dynamically, so that the practice becomes inseparable from daily life. In this way, we overcome the tendency to see spiritual practice as something special, separate from ordinary situations and challenges.



Regulating body, breath, and mind. Be equilibrium between movement and stillness.

Silent Illumination

Silently and serenely, forgetting all words; clearly and vividly, it appears before you.


Don’t worry about whether or not you become enlightened – simply pick up the Huatou.

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