Jan Chozen Bays, Roshi

Jan Chozen Bays, Roshi has studied and practiced Zen Buddhism since 1973. She received Jukai (lay precepts) in 1975 and Tokudo, Priest’s Ordination, in 1979 from Taizan Maezumi, Roshi. From 1978 to 1983 she lived at Zen Center of Los Angeles, studying with Maezumi, Roshi and directing the Zen Center’s non-profit Medical Clinic. She finished formal koan study in 1983 and she was given Dharma transmission (authorization to teach) that same year. Following the death of Maezumi, Roshi in 1995 she has continued her training with Shodo Harada, Roshi, a Rinzai Zen teacher and the abbot of Sogen-ji monastery in Japan.

Since 1985 Chozen, Roshi has been the teacher for Zen Community of Oregon. In 2002 she helped to found Great Vow Zen Monastery and is the co-abbot. In 2011 she also helped found Heart of Wisdom Zen Temple in Portland, Oregon.

She has published many articles about Zen in the periodicals Tricycle and Buddhadharma. Her first book, Jizo Bodhisattva, Modern Healing and Traditional Buddhist Practice (Tuttle, 2002), has been re-issued in paperback as Jizo Bodhisattva, Guardian of Children, Women and Other Voyagers by Shambhala.  She is the author of How to Train a Wild Elephant: And Other Adventures in Mindfulness (Shambhala, 2011), and Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food (Shambala 2011).

Chozen, Roshi is also pediatrician, mother, and wife.

Events with Jan Chozen Bays, Roshi

Pari-Nirvana Sesshin: A Meditation Retreat exploring Life, Death & the Unknown
February 20, 2023

This retreat is offered both in person and on zoom. Zen meditation is an invitation to the unknown. During this sesshin we take up the Buddha’s Parinirvana–the Buddha’s death, as the essential inquiry into our own relationship with death, dying and the uncertainties of this life. How often in your daily life do you allow yourself to reflect on your own mortality, your own death? This sesshin provides the structure and support needed to look into the fears and anxieties surrounding death, dying and the unknown. Supported by the stillness and quiet of winter, we allow the body, heart and…

Transforming the Inner Critic: Weekend Workshop
May 26, 2023

  Everyone has an Inner Critic. Sometimes experienced as an inner voice of clear criticism and judgement, directed inside or at others. Sometimes experienced energetically or wordlessly. When out of balance the Inner Critic has the potential to destroy relationships, turn our mind towards anxiety and depression, sap our physical energy and undermine our spiritual practice, creativity and careers. Yet the Inner Critic is not the enemy. It contains the wisdom of discernment. Rather than try to destroy or silence this powerful voice, our work is to become strong and clear enough to stand up to it, hear its truth,…