Drain Drama 3


After taking down the trees, the cranes moved in to break down the septic tanks after removing the tree stump.

Tenkei Roshi surveying the damage

Drain Drama & Tree Crew


Calligraphy Workshop with Kaz Tanahashi


Drain Drama 2


After the septic tank was unearthed it turned out that the tree next to the building had grown roots; first through the tank walls, then several meters up the drainpipes into the building. This posed a danger because if it would blow over, the walls would come with it. After appying for a license from the local council the tree was felled with great sorrow

For the crane and diggers to reach the site safely, an iron road had to be laid over the grass.

The official also required that the stump be completely removed.

The council official also noticed that the branches overhanging the road were too low for traffic to pass and must also be pruned. Then to add frost to snow, three elm trees in the front are sick and must also come down. Meanwhile, the company recommended that while the iron road was still  in place. the trees along the ditch by the building could be pruned of deadwood that had developed due to drought 

Madrid Conference



Zazenkai at Fundacion PonsMadrid

Open talk in El Escorial at Hotel Sercotel Los Lanceros

Eva translating for Tenkei Roshi

At the location of the new zendo in El Escorial, Madrid. Marisa Emyo Gonzalez will begin giving classes there and at Zen River Madrid. Emyo received Hoshi from Tenkei Roshi during the Summer Ango. Paul Taian Davies and Eva Borreguero, who live in El Escorial, will organize activities.

Drain Drama


On the last day of the September weekend sesshin all the drains in the new wing toilets and showers were suddenly blocked. The local drain company quickly came in to help fix it. Unfortunately, when the high-pressure water hose was turned on, some water backed up an old drain hole concealed under the living room carpet, and up a few sinks. Another problem followed soon…


Vist of Inter-religious Christian Monastics


A group of inter-religious Christian monastics visited Zen River to experience how a Buddhist monastic community lives together. Our guests were an international group, with monks and nuns coming from Norway, Portugal, America, and South Korea to name but a few. Their first intention was to travel to Japan, then realised they could get a taste of Japanese Buddhism in The Netherlands. Welcome!

Gate Opening Ceremony and Purification


During Ryakufusatsu ceremony, Tenkei Roshi led a small ceremony to open and purify the new temple gate and driveway.
During Ryakufusatsu, Tenkei Roshi led a short ceremony to open and purify the new temple gate and driveway.

October 4-6

Zen Brush Workshop with Kaz Tanahashi


Zen River is happy to welcome Kaz Tanahashi once more. If you are interested in joining this weekend, please contact the office soon as space is limited.

The Summer Month Long 2019

Zazen and Samu work period



Shusohossenshiki Ceremony


Shusohossenshiki Ceremony for Soshin Wisniewski on August 4th, 2019. Congratulations!

Roshis Tenkei and Myoho with Shuso Soshin Wisniewski; Shoki, Taikan Gregoire ; Benji, Konin Arends; and two of Soshins sons Eden Shōgaku Lonsdale and Merryn Yu-shin Lonsdale

Summer Month Long 2019


The 2019 Summer Month Long is underway.

A Major Repair for the Summer Month Long!


The coffee machine broke down just as the month long started. After several unsuccessful attempts, Taikan was finally able to repair it with the garden hose and lots of vinegar. Thank goodness!

Young Minds Seminar


The 2019 Young Minds Seminar was a colorful event. The party tent was set up in the back garden and made for a perfect painting studio. Besides zazen, ritual, and various study classes, the youngsters engaged in creative forms of calligraphy; inspired by traditional masterpieces but also by modern graffiti artists. Young and old, we all enjoyed our time together.

Study Class with Tenkei Roshi
Samu Work Period
Work Period

Calligraphy and Graffiti painting

Morning Service

Sutra Reading Class with Doin Sensei

The Art Display

Summer Ango July 13 – August 24 

Month Long Sesshin July 27 – August 24


The upcoming Summer Ango training period will officially start on Saturday July 13, with the Shuso entering ceremony for head-monk Andreas Soshin Wisniewski at 4:30 pm. Soshin met Tenkei Roshi in England in
1996 during sesshin. Genpo Roshi became his main teacher and gave
him monastic ordination in 2005. However, he often attends sesshin at
Zen River, and has, together with his three sons participated in the annual Family Week since 2003. We wish Soshin all the best, and already look forward to his Hossenshiki on August 4th at 11: 00 AM. Everybody is welcome to attend, so feel free to invite family and friends!

Plus, everyone is looking forward to the Summer Month-Long sesshin that begins Saturday July 27 at noon. A great time for the whole sangha to come together to practice as an extended family. As always, the Month-Long includes three 5-day and one 7-day sesshins with some free time in between. Registration is open for the whole month, or for those wishing to join for one, two, or three weeks. Contact the office for more information and to register.

 Maitreya Institute, Loenen


Tenkei Roshi was invited by his dharma friend from the Tibetan tradition, Rev. Gendun Losang, to give a series of lectures during a Vipassana retreat at the Maitreya Institute in Loenen.

Spring/Summer Newsletter


Spring/Summer 2019 Newsletter

Garden & Maintenance


Weeding in Buddha Grove

The rotting workshop door and window frames undergo serious repair

Visit of Rev. Yuko Wakayama

&  Yamada Roshi


This week we were happy to welcome two special guests: Rev. Yuko Wakayama from Shogakuji in Tokyo, and her master Yamada Roshi. Yuko-san met Tenkei once in Germany, and attended a public talk by him in Tokyo when he and Myoho visited Japan earlier this year. She then invited Tenkei to give a dharma talk at Shogakuji. It made her and her master curious about our style of practice and they decided to visit Zen River. While they were here, Yuko-san gave a lively and moving record of her experiences as a nun in Japan.

First Jukai Ceremony at the Zen Boat


We are happy to announce that on Sunday June 9th the first Jukai ceremony took place on the Zen Boat. Harold Anzan (Quiet Mountain) en Joris Shodo (True Way) received the Buddhist precepts from Senko Sensei in the presence of Tenkei Roshi. Congratulations!

Opening Ceremonies at Keiryuji

Camprodon, Spain

Hojosan and Tenkei Roshi both officiated the opening ceremonies at Keiryuji, the mountain temple led by Tenkei Roshis first successor, Gakudo den Hollander

Memorial service for Koren Sensei; founder of Keiryuji, successor to Tenkei Roshi, and wife of Gakudo Sensei

Gakudo Sensei officiates his first shukke tokudo ceremony for Pascal Tetsuko van der Knokke and Emke Gyoen Jutte

Senseis Doin, Gakudo, and Rev. Tetsuko

Visit Junyu Kuroda Roshi & Yamamoto Roshi


Zen River was happy to welcome both Junyu Kuroda Roshi and Yamamoto Roshi for the Falling Flowers Sesshin. Hojun, their translator, was unable to join but Doin could connect him from Poland through Skype with the assistance of a large speaker.

Kuroda Roshi gave a in-depth talk on the koan “Joshu Washes His Bowls” eloquently translated by Rev. Shuho Go

Shukke Tokudo Ceremony


On May 22nd Tenkei Roshi gave shukke tokudo to Mieke Jyokun Eikemans, one of the Zen River residents. Congratulations!



Tenkei Roshi was one of hundreds of international delegates invited to attend the UNDV 2019 held in Hanoi

Shukke Tokudo Ceremony


Wayne Taikan Gregoire received shukke tokudo (monk ordination) from Tenkei Roshi on May 4th. Congratulations!

Young Rivers Article


A very nice article about the Zen River Young Minds seminar came out in a student magazine called Spectrum. It was written by one of the Young Mind participants who came in January. Click on the photo to read the full article.

Jukai Ceremony


Tenkei Roshi gave Jukai to Dani Gensho (Magical Nature 幻 性) Delacámara at the end of the Sakura Spring Sesshin. Congratulations!

Gensho, standing with Tenkei and Myoho, is also a long-standing member of Zen River Madrid.

Happy Buddha’s Birthday!


Visit to Japan


Tenkei and Myoho started their visit attending the Higan Ceremony at Kirigayaji, the home temple of Hojo-san, which included a memorial service for Bernie Tetsugen Glassman

Food offering

Ashes of Bernie that were sent over by his widow Eve Marko were put in a traditional urn and placed on the altar together with the Ihai (memorial tablet)

Later the urn was buried next to the urn with ashes of Maezumi Roshi at the graveyard close to Fuji-dera, the mountain temple of Hojo-san near Mount Fuji

Tenkei was invited to give a talk at Kirigayaji. He also gave a dharma talk at another temple, Shogakuji, and a public lecture in Tokyo

Visiting Tōsen-in, the family temple of Rev. Shuho Go

They also went to visit Keisho-In, the temple of Koichi-san and his wife Masami

Dropping in for a cup of tea at Hoitsu Suzuki Roshi’s temple

The last evening, Hojosan celebrated his 80th birthday party at a lovely restaurant in Tokyo

Visit to Madrid


In February, Zen River Madrid invited Myoho Roshi to give a teisho for the sangha. A lovely space was available at Fundación Pons. Many Zen River Madrid members attended with friends and family.

Lecture by Yusho Sasaki Roshi


Zen River was happy to welcome Rev. Yusho Sasaski, the Sokan for the European Soto school. She gave an interesting lecture on the meaning of some of the gods and protectors depicted in the temples in Japan.

Shusohossenshiki Ceremony

for Gyosei Overbeek


On February 10, Zen River held a shusohossenshiki ceremony for Gyosei Overbeek. Tenkei Roshi had requested her to be the head monk for the winter ango training period.

Receiving the shippei from Tenkei Roshi

Rev. Yusho Sasaski, the European Sokan, attended and witnessed the ceremony as Jokeshi.


Jukai Ceremony


Tenkei Roshi gave Jukai to three young minds; Eden Sho-gaku (祥學 Fortunate Study) Lonsdale ; Reyhan Ban-kyu (萬究 Ten thousand things Investigation) Lonsdale; and Merryn Yu-shin (雄心 Strong Heart) Lonsdale. The three brothers have been coming with their father, Andreas Soshin Wisniewski, to Family Week since it began in 2004.


Young Minds Weekend Retreat


Young Minds Weekend Retreat attracted many students from many different nationalities!

Besides zazen, services, oryoki meals and study classes there was also a painting project led by Tenkei Roshi

Snowy Entrance


The gate is 99 percent complete, just in time for the first snowfall! All that is left to do is the stain and a few details on the woodwork when the weather warms up

Zen River Temple Gate


The gate is almost finished. Just a few steps left.

Young Minds Zen Weekend

A monastic experience for anyone age 15-30

February 2-3, 2019


The program, especially designed for young people, will include training in zazen (Zen meditation), Buddhist ritual, scriptural study, and several group activities. Arrival is Saturday February 2nd, at 11:00 am, and ends Sunday, February 3rd, at 5:00 pm. The suggested donation for this event is €40,-. For more information, and for registration, please contact the office at office@zenrivertemple.org or +31 (0)595 435039

Happy New Year!


Happy New Year from the New Years Sesshin participants!

Strijdlustig en Vredelievend

Tutti Cantano Chamber Choir at Zen River


One of our Zen River members, Pieter Fumon Bosma, is a professional music director. He conducts various ensembles, most notably the ‘Groninger Studentenorkest Mira’. A few years ago he even managed to teach a choir of Zen River residents and members Adiemus by Karl Jenkins, a beautiful piece of music that we performed twice during celebratory events.
 In 2016 Pieter began working with the chamber choir Tutti Cantano in Zuidwolde, Groningen, and invited both Tammy (Myoho Roshi) and Robert (Doin Sensei) to join their ranks and for the last two and a half years they have been active members. On Wednesday December 19th, Tutti Cantano came to Zen River to share an enthusiastic performance of their latest repertoire!

Jukai Ceremony


Peter Yushin Pottebaum, from the Dusseldorf Zen River group, received jukai from Tenkei Roshi. Congratulations!

Zen River Annual Fundraising Appeal, 2018


This year we would like to ask your attention for a simple – but urgent – renovation….read on to help!

Fall / Winter 2018 Newsletter


Gate Taking Shape


The new Temple gate starting to take shape; the beams for the roof are up.


Taikan on the roof securing the beams.

Zen River Lima


During the annual visit to Peru, Tenkei Roshi gave Jukai to a group of twelve students who practice with Ryusho Sensei at Zen River Lima. Congratulations!


Ryusho Sensei and his team organised a Zazenkai  which was led by Tenkei Roshi and took place at a Tibetan centre in downtown Lima

Farewell Seishi-san!


Seishi-san (centre left), who came to practice at Zen River for two months, is now on his way to Kanshoji and Ryumonji in France. After that he will return to Toshoji senmon sodo in Okayama. Thank you for joining the team and hope to see you here again one day!

Bernie Tetsugen Glassman, Roshi

January 18, 1939 – November 4, 2018


Yesterday morning we did a special service at Zen River for Bernie Tetsugen Glassman Roshi, a Dharma Uncle, who passed away on Sunday, November 4th. He was Maezumi Roshi’s first dharma successor, and the co-founder of the highly influential Zen Peacemaker Order. We will keep him in our hearts and wish him a swift passage to the other shore.

Autumn Morning at Zen River


Scaffolding Going Up


Zen’etsu and Seishi-san prepare the scaffold for the next phase of the new temple gate!


Final sanding the gate posts

Gate Foundation Complete


Zen’etsu checking the completed foundations for the new temple gate. The wood is now being prepared for the next phase!

At Fudenji, Italy


Taiten Guareschi Roshi, the abbot of Fudenji in Italy, invited Tenkei Roshi as one of the lecturers at their annual International seminar. Tenkei was accompanied by Shin’yu-san to the event.


Asayama Roshi was also one of the lecturers with a delegation from Eiheiji, Japan


Tenkei with Myoko Roshi and Taiten Roshi



Samu at Zen River; Shuho-san raking leaves with Rev. Seishi Nagaso. Seishi-san is a trainee monk from Toshoj in Okayama, and will practice at Zen River for two months. Afterwards he will go to Ryumonji and Kanshoji in France before returning to Japan. Welcome!


Taikan sanding panels that will neatly close off the attic storage in the old wing.

Inryo Windows


After a few unforseen delays, the outside of the new windows of the inryo are being painted! Steffen Buikema, who also helped paint the windows of the Zendo, will be working on it this week.

Visit Rev. Koichi Isoda


Tenkei Roshi and Myoho were happy to welcome Koichi Isoda from Keisho-In, Fuji City, Japan. They first met in Sojiji in 2000. Since then Koichi-san has visited Zen River many times. Besides running his home temple and performing Shamisen, he also assists Seido Suzuki Roshi at Toshoji Senmon Sodo in Okayama.

Koichi-san gave a talk on his history and connection with Zen River

Jukai Ceremony


On August 29th, just after the summer month long, Julie Konin (illumination trust) Arends received Jukai from Tenkei Roshi. Congratulations!

Shusohossenshiki Ceremony


Rev. Shuho Go was Shuso for this summer Ango period. It was the first time a Japanese monk fulfilled this position and did Hossenshiki.

Memorial Service for Koren Sensei


Monthlong Memory


Garden Shed Repairs


Summer Monthlong Sesshin


The Month-long sesshin is in full swing. The Hossenshiki for Shuho-san will be on Saturday August 25.

Gate Foundation


Zen’etsu is in the process of making the structure to pour concrete for the foundations for the new gate

Film project Shumucho


Rev. Taibun Terumoto from the Shumucho office in Paris and film-maker Stanislas Wang-Genh joined us for two days during the Month-long. They are working on a movie about European Soto temples and came over to film sesshin at Zen River. The movie will be posted on the Shumucho website beginning next year. We look forward to seeing it!

Guest Speaker Han de Wit

06/08 2018

Zen River was happy to welcome Han de Wit as a guest teacher during the second week of the Month-long. He gave an inspiring talk about the Shambhala tradition, and explained how Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche incorporated Japanese Zen elements into his training programme, due to his connection with masters like Maezumi Roshi. Apparently it was Genpo Roshi who, at the time, introduced Shambhala members to the practice of Oryoki!

Gate Foundation


Zen’etsu started on the construction of the new gate at the head of the driveway. He found a local company to come and literally screw in some foundation pegs! Those screws are a meter and a half long each. Next step is to pour the concrete.

Young Rivers Seminar


The paintings


Outdoor Zazen at Noordpolderzijl


Morning service


Sutra Reading class with Doin Sensei


Outdoor painting in nature

Roof Repairs


The siding of the roof was damaged by wet weather and needs to be replaced. Gert and Wayne are busy with it while the seminar continues

Thistle River

Spring 2005 – July 2, 2018


Thistle, the temple cat who lived in the Inryo with Tammy and Tenkei sadly passed away to the other shore after a brief illness. She was dearly loved and will be sorely missed.

Genpo Roshi Visit


Genpo Roshi and his partner Charlotte were travelling in Europe and came to visit Zen River for two days


Genpo Roshi gave a moving talk and brought up many stories of the good old days with Tenkei and Tammy. He concluded with conferring Inka (final seal of approval) to Tammy, and gave her a new Dharma name Tenshin 天頂 (zenith)


Reciting his Inka poem: Subtle Dharma / Surrendered / Zenith  / Empowered


After the talk, Genpo Roshi and Charlotte visited the Zen Boat in Groningen


And joined us in the city for a celebratory drink

Spring/Summer Newsletter


The spring/summer newsletter is now available to read online.

Open House

Sunday June 17


The open house on Sunday afternoon was a great success and enjoyed by everyone. Around fifty people attended from the local area and beyond.


Tenkei Roshi officiated a service during the course of the afternoon so that people could experience what happens in the Hatto. Gyosei and Julie sat zazen in the zendo all afternoon and several visitors felt compelled to join and sit too!

United Nations Day of Vesak Celebration May 25-27


Tenkei Roshi was invited to the UN Vesak Celebrations 2018 in Bangkok. It was a great opportunity to meet many prominent Buddhists from all over the the world.

Cultural Performance

Zen Boat Inauguration


On Sunday May 13 Tenkei Roshi officiated the inauguration of the Zen Boat in Groningen as a branch temple of Zen River. Senseis Senko and Jifu live there as resident teachers, while Doin and Ranka also conduct classes regularly.


Congratulations to all!

Jukai Ceremony, May 6


Tenkei Roshi gave Jukai to five recipients this weekend. Congratulations!


Marleen Monshin 聞心 (Listen Heart) Laroy, Matthijs 純 道 (Pure Way) Noordzij, Jasna Zuisho 瑞祥 (Good Omen) Terihaj, Tenkei Roshi, Leo Kyokai 巨 海 (Great Ocean) van Nieuwenhuijzen, and Margriet Seisen 清 川 (Clear River) Broekroelofs


Many family and friends attended the ceremony

Bell Repair


Shinyu’san and Taikan-san made it the roof (with a safety harness!) to detach the faulty electrical mechanism that hits the bell. It  had stopped working over the winter period. The broken part has been sent to the bell company for repair and should be back soon!

Tenkei Roshi in Madrid


Tenkei Roshi was invited by Zen River Madrid to lead a public talk and zazenkai. He was also asked to show some of his earlier art works which were sold to raise funds for the new gate at the head of the driveway.


Public Talk


Tenkei Roshi at the Art Show with two of his paintings


The Spanish sangha also invited Shuho-san to accompany Tenkei Roshi and visit the soccer stadiums – a dream come true!

Drain Pipe Dilemma


A block in one of the drains forced Daishin and Zenet’su to dig up the pipe that ran under the Stone Garden.


Unbeknownst to anyone there was a large drainage hole found to be damaged by tree roots and full of mud and leaves!

Practice Weekend at Zen River


Zen River was happy to welcome Wanda Sluyter and members from Zen Centrum Eindhoven for a practice weekend. The two days included a guided meditation, zazen, services, dokusan, study class, samu, and formal oryoki meals. While they were here they filmed some impressions with a short video clip

Kitchen Prep


Kitchen prep for 5 spice lentil dhal with apple chutney.

Guest speaker Pablo d’Ors from Madrid


Pablo d’Ors is a Catholic priest from Madrid who includes zen meditation in his spiritual practice. He came to join our program with some of his Spanish students. Pablo has written a highly acclaimed book entitled “Biografia del Silencio”. During their stay he treated us to a very interesting talk.

Shukke Tokudo Ceremony for Tessa Gyosei Overbeek


Last Saturday Tenkei Roshi gave Shukke Tokudo (monastic ordination) to Tessa Gyosei Overbeek, who has been a resident at Zen River for several years now. Congratulations!

Thursday May 17 – Tuesday May 22, 2018

5 Day Sesshin

With special guests Rev. Junyu Kuroda and Yamamoto Roshi


Zen River is happy to welcome Rev. Junyu Kuroda and Yamamoto Roshi for the May Spring sesshin.  Yamamoto Roshi is the last surviving successor of Koryu Roshi, one of Maezumi Roshi’s teachers. Both will be giving dharma talks during this extended weekend retreat. Yamamoto Roshi will also give talks at Zencentrum Amsterdam and in Utrecht. If you would like to attend this sesshin please contact the office for more information.

Zen Boat Groningen


Monthly City Sesshins on the Zen Boat in Groningen began this year. They will be led alternately by Senseis Jifu and Senko.

Shusohossenshiki for Timo Myogaku Bieber


Group photo after shusohossenshiki: Myogakus teacher, Rev. Jacob Myozen Gimiotti (front left), a successor of Nishiyama Roshi, came from Heidelberg to attend the ceremony. Rev. Yusho Sasaki, the Sokan of the European department of the Soto School in Paris was the Jokeshi for the ceremony

Lecture  on Yogacara by Rev. Yusho Sasaki


Yusho Sasaki Roshi gave a very interesting lecture on Yogacara on the night before Shusoshossenshiki. Here she demonstrates our differing perspectives on how the world looks like!

Saturday February 24 11:00 AM

Shusohossenshiki for Timo Myogaku Bieber


Myogaku is the first Shuso in our Zen River Ango history who is from a lineage other than the White Plum. His teacher, Rev. Jakob Myosen Cimiotti, is a successor of Nishiyama Roshi, and will come over from Heidelberg to support him. Rev. Yusho Sasaki, the Sokan of the European department of the Soto School in Paris will take on the position of Jokeshi (official witness). She has also agreed to give a lecture on the evening before the ceremony.

Friday February 23 8:00 PM

Lecture by Rev. Yusho Sasaki


We are happy to welcome Rev. Yusho Sasaki, the Sokan of the European department of the Soto School in Paris, as the  Jokeshi (official witness) for the upcoming shusohossenshiki ceremony for Myogaku Bieber.  She will be giving a lecture on Friday evening on Yogacara that everyone is welcome to attend.


Young Rivers Weekend

Feb 3–4, 2018

Young Rivers weekend 2018


Garden Works

On account of the mud and wet weather, a new path to the garden shed and drain for the chicken run is being dug out


Driveway Rescue Plan Takes Shape

The annual fundraiser is still going strong. The gardener John Kasteel (centre) and his crew work on planting the new Cornus kousa trees, hedges, bushes and hundreds of plants. Everyone is looking forward to seeing it in the spring!


Driveway Rescue Plan

The roots are removed and new topsoil goes down.


Window Replacement Phase 3

After some logistical delays, the old drafty Inryo windows on the west and south side are finally being replaced by double glazing. As the building has been extended and modified several times since it was built in the thirties, all the windows are slightly different. So it is quite a challenging job for Klaas de Boer’s construction team.


The windows are almost finished on the outside. They will be painted when the weather is warmer.


The inside window frames will be completed by the Zen River maintenance team. Rice paper will be the temporary curtain!

Read through the archived news pages of the old website

Archives 2016

Archives 2017