Our Philosophy

Boundless Mind Zen

Originally developed in China, Zen Buddhism has been disseminated throughout East Asia and has evolved into a multifaceted tradition that has no particular national, ethnic, or cultural identity. Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese lineages of Zen have all been introduced to the West and multiple variants of the Zen Tradition have emerged as results of the integration of these ethnic traditions with the Western philosophical interpretations of Zen.

Boundless Mind Zen has emerged as one such variant that is primarily focused on the core philosophy and practices of Zen without reliance on any specific nationalistic, cultural or ethnic tradition or practice. Since Boundless Mind Zen is based on the core or common philosophies and practices of Zen Buddhism, rather than any particular cultural or ethnic practices, Boundless Mind Zen is fundamentally a universal form of Zen.

Understanding that all Zen lineages are aspects of a common tradition is fundamental to Boundless Mind Zen Philosophy. Therefore, Boundless Mind Zen Wayfarers are encouraged to study and practice all forms of Zen openly and flow freely like Clouds and Water, honoring all Zen teachers and lineages with mutual respect.

The Order of the Boundless Way

The primary tenet of The Boundless Mind Zen is that the experience of Zen enlightenment, or enlightened mind, is universal and directly available to anyone who develops a personal discipline of practicing Zen meditation and lives by the Buddhist precepts.

Being universal, Boundless Mind Zen practices do not favor any particular gender, ethnicity or vocation and there are no distinctions made between sexes, marital status or lifestyle. Monks, clergy and householders are all of equal status within the Order, there is no graduation of rank or degree of privilege and no hierarchy among members.

Since all these paths lead to the realization of Buddha consciousness, with every path having different messages for different people in different situations, each individual can choose between these vocations and/or lifestyles without concerns of favoring one over another based on status or recognition. Students of the Boundless Mind Zen understand that every individual is responsible for his or her own spiritual growth and development, and that joining a particular school of philosophy and/or prescribed course of discipline should only be a component of one's overall psycho-spiritual development.

Members of the order who choose to become clergy and/or live as monks are expected to choose a path of commitment corresponding to those lifestyles/vocations. As such, individuals who choose to act and work as clergy are fully recognized by the Order for their accomplishments and are legally sanctioned by the Order to provide all the services normally associated with this vocation. Members of the Order are not precluded from becoming members of other sanghas or orders, or becoming recognized as clergy in other Zen lineages or traditions.