Hello and Welcome!

The Edmonton Buddhist Meditation Group is a small congregation practicing Serene Reflection Meditation under the direction of Reverend Master Koten Benson, Prior of Lions Gate Buddhist Priory. Reverend Master Kōten Benson is a Dharma Heir of the late Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett, founder of The Order of Buddhist Contemplatives which has its North American headquarters at Shasta Abbey in Mount Shasta, California.

About the Edmonton Buddhist Meditation Group:

The Edmonton Buddhist Meditation Group is a smaller congregation-run meditation group that practices Serene Reflection Meditation. Also known as Soto Zen in Japan and Ts’ao-Tung in China. This practice emphasizes meditation, keeping of the precepts, and compassion. The group operates a meditation hall with an area for tea, Dharma talks, and other congregation activities within a member’s residence.

Organization details:

Edmonton Buddhist Meditation Group was incorporated as a Religious Society in 1979. Our practice is Serene Reflection Meditation, known as Soto Zen in Japan and Ts’ao-Tung in China. This practice emphasizes meditation and the keeping of the Precepts within the training of everyday life.

Reverend Master Kōten Benson:

Rev. Kōten Benson has been the Prior of Lions Gate Buddhist Priory since 1986. He is a Dharma Heir of Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett, founder of the OBC, who died in 1996. He was ordained in 1978 by Rev. Master Jiyu, and recognized by her as a Buddhist Master in 1983.

About Lions Gate Buddhist Priory:

The Priory has three monks in residence and is located at Dragon Flower Mountain, one hundred and sixty acres of land in the Botanie Valley, near the village of Lytton in the BC interior.


4 Responses to Hello

  1. Cara Jenner says:

    when is your next introduction session?

    Cara Jenner

  2. October 29. Just show up if you are interested.

  3. Rob I MacDonald says:

    Hello, I am looking for a meditation group to join. I have meditated by myself for a few years.

    Why do you use Serene Reflection meditation rather than Mindfulness of breathing meditation as Buddha suggested in the anapanasati sutra?

    Do you practice other objects of meditation or jhana states to gain insight into the examination of reality?

    Please understand that I mean no disrespect by asking.

    Metta and Kind Regards,
    -Rob MacDonald.

  4. Rob

    We are a group connected to a North American Soto organization, temples, and tradition. Those who continue with us, I assume based on myself, feel that it is the best method for them. I personally feel that meditation is most effective as part of a tradition, not wishing for it to become just another “technique” to overlay upon an individualistic approach to life. Zen is Buddhism that has developed through its movement through China, Japan, and now, North America. I would say (unofficially, as I am not a monk) that our tradition maintains the original purpose of meditation as practiced by the disciples of Buddha, without getting ensnared in counterproductive concerns like jhana states or levels of accomplishment. For me, meditation is about letting go of self, not striving to “get somewhere”, and that this is the heart of the Buddha’s teaching. Soto meditation is a very simple, yet challenging, practice. If you believe that other methods are better, you should certainly pursue those. If you wish to investigate the Soto methodology, feel free to join us for instruction where we may explain our approach (to the best of our modest abilities). You are always welcome.


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