I Will Never Abandon You: The Zen Priest Hozan Senauke Sings

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I can’t date it precisely, but something in the neighborhood of fifty years ago I wandered into the recently launched Berkeley Zendo. Today, I am going to its successor organization the Berkeley Zen Center for my last meeting as a member of the board of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association.

The Berkeley Zen Center is one of those minor centers of the universe, a place where many people have found their hearts. I can’t think of it, either the old zendo or the now long established Zen center without thinking of my gratitude to their founding abbot, the Reverend Sojun Mel Weitsman. But, of course, this is no one person’s show.

And in the moment I find myself thinking of their vice-abbot, the Reverend Hozan Alan Senauke. In addition to being one of the senior Zen priests in North American, Hozan is a poet, social justice activist, and, oh, he sings…

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