The Way of the Lay Practitioner
Lay practitioners have always been a vital part of Mahayana Buddhism. The history of lay practice goes back to the time of the Buddha and the great lay practitioner Vimalakirti, during whose life the term “white-robed one” began to be used.
In the MRO, John Daido Loori, Roshi designed the Eight Gates of Zen to address the needs and challenges of modern lay practitioners in the West. The Order’s two training facilities–ZMM and ZCNYC–support lay practitioners who work in the world and maintain families and households. The Society of Mountains and Rivers, an organization of affiliates associated with the Order in the US and abroad, provides the facilities for zazen and retreats with visiting teachers. Lay practitioners also find support in the MRO’s quarterly journal, Mountain Record, and other media produced and distributed through Dharma Communications.