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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This web site reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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Dojo Zen Sanrin

Dojo Zen Sanrin

Don Minzoni road, 12 – Fossano (Cuneo) - ITALY



The dojo is the "place where the Way is practiced". In fact, it is the Way, while Jo means Place. Zen comes from the experience of the Shakyamuni Buddha who, more than 2500 years ago, realized the complete Awakening by practicing the Awareness sitting in the zazen posture. Zazen literally means "sitting meditation", it is the heart of Zen and is practiced above all in the Dojo, because although zazen can be practiced anywhere, the dojo, especially at the beginning, is the most appropriate place, under the sure guidance of a teacher, of an instructor or older practitioners. The dojo offers the ideal conditions for practice: going together with others beyond one's self, beyond discussions, through concentration on posture and on every action, harmonizing with others, with oneself and with the reality that it surrounds us, conforming spontaneously to the traditional rules.
The Fossano Dojo was born as a Zen Group of Fossano in March 1990 and for 5 years it developed under the patient and vigorous direction of the monk Ezio Tenryu Zanin (then Head of the Zen Mokusho Dojo of Turin). In September 1995 Master Roland Yuno Rech (direct disciple of Master Taisen Deshimaru, Japanese Zen monk who came to Europe in 1967 to divulge the zazen practice to the West) formally recognized the Fossano Zen Group as Dojo, giving it the name of Dojo Zen Sanrin, "forest in the mountain". The organization of the Dojo follows the Zen tradition, therefore there is a responsible monk (currently Lucio Yushin Morra) and several assistants (monks and lay people) to carry out all the tasks necessary for the management of the center (teachings, study, library, flowers, altars, cleanings, interreligious dialogue) strictly in the spirit of the practice of awareness and service to others. Regular practitioners are currently around thirty (including four monks), but the Zen Sanrin Dojo is open to all and a few hundred people refer to it occasionally by participating in its activities.
The interreligious dialogue between Christians and Buddhists is based on the many points of contact that exist between the two religions. Both recognize mercy, forgiveness, understanding and respect for others. Another particularly important aspect that links Buddhism to Christianity is the community sense, which brings together all the members of the community. As explained by Maria Immacolata Macioti, coordinator of the Sociology of Religion section of the Italian Association of Sociology, "Buddhism teaches Catholics about dialogue. Today, in this age of conflict, the religious aspect has been exploited but we know that religions help confrontation. I believe that Catholics who approach Buddhism seek sincere friendship ".
Japanese Buddhism and Christianity are two important realities that came into contact in the mid-sixteenth century, thanks to the evangelization carried out by the Jesuits in the Far East. These were followed by the Franciscans but the Japanese imperial power felt so threatened that first it issued edicts of expulsion and then began to persecute them. In Europe, however, Buddhism came much later, in the nineteenth century. In Italy, although there were already a few hearths after the First World War, the real spread occurred only around the 60s and 70s. Today Buddhism represents in Italy the third most followed religion, after Christianity and Islam. Over the years, many Buddhist temples have sprung up in major Italian cities: from Rome to Milan, from Orvieto to Palermo. It must be specified that the word "Buddhism" was coined in 800 by the Westerners themselves to identify a Panasian philosophy born in India around the fifth century BC. and then spread a little across the continent. Relations between the Catholic Church and the faithful of the different Buddhist traditions in Italy are founded on mutual respect.
- Direct visit
- Classroom activity (pre and post the visit):
Insights on some characteristic terms of Zen Buddhism: Bodhisattva, Buddhadharma, Dharma, Hasshodo, Karma, Zazen. In-depth sheets on the fundamental masters starting from Shakyamuni.Activity of verification of the acquired knowledge and skills.


  • Buddhism needs women
    Conference, organized by the Mandala Center for Tibetan Studies in Milan, on the role of women in Buddhism.
  • Doju Freiere Home Page
    Website of the rev. Doju Dinajara Freire, nun at the Zen Sarin Dojo in Fossano.
  • European Buddhist Union
    Site of the European Buddhist Union, an international association of Buddhist organizations and national Buddhist unions in Europe, whose aims is to bring Buddhist ideas and principles into European society.
  • Italian Buddhist Union
    Official site of the Italian Buddhist Union.
  • Le riflessioni di Doju Dinajara Freire
    Interview with Doju Dinajara Freire, Coordinator of "Global Peace Initiative of Women" at the World Science for Peace Conference.
  • Santacittarama Monastero Buddhista Theravada
    Presentation of the Buddhist monastery Santacittarama, "The Garden of the Serene Heart", a small monastery, the first in Italy of the Theravada tradition, "The Way of the Elders".
  • The divine feminine
    Interview with Doju Dinajara Freire, Coordinator of "Global Peace Initiative of Women", on interreligiousness
  • Theravada Buddhism: Like The Leaves In My Hand
    A short promo film by John Preston about the Buddhist path and meditation. Interviews with meditators from Ven. Pemasiri Thera's Dhamma Center - Sumati Phala Senasuna Arana, Kanduboda - Delgoda, Sri Lanka

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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This web site reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.