Our teacher

Our visiting teacher is Karen Terzano. Karen is an American Zen Buddhist teacher in the Ordinary Mind School tradition, founded by Charlotte Joko Beck (1917-2011). Karen has worked as a research psychologist and university professor while maintaining an active psychotherapy practice. She holds a PhD in Physiological Comparative Psychology as well as one in Clinical Psychology, and specialized in Ethology for her Masters degree in Biology.

Karen began Zen practice in the late 1980s, studying for several years during the 1990s with Hwalson Sunim, a teacher within the Chogye Order of Korea, a Lin-chi (Rinzai) form of Zen. In1998 she moved to Costa Rica and there became a formal student of Sunyana Graef, a Dharma Heir of Phillip Kapleau. In 2005 Karen returned to the United States where she spent two years in residence at the Vermont Zen Center before leaving on what she calls her ‘walkabout’ period, a series of solitary wilderness pilgrimages. In 2009 Karen retook her formal vows with her current teacher, Barry Magid, and received Dharma transmission from him in 2014. She is a member of the Lay Zen Teachers Association.

In leading traditional retreats where invited, and by conducting pilgrimages of various types, Karen has worked for several years with an electronic sangha, comprised of students from all over the world. Then, in 2012, with permission of her teacher, Karen established the Tavallinen Mieli Zendo in Tampere, Finland and now serves as its guiding teacher, spending several months in residence there each year.

Karen led a two-day retreat here in April 2015, which led to the creation of our group. She now acts as a teacher to some of our members and offers guidance for our group practice. We plan to invite her back in the future to lead longer retreats.

Karen would be happy to answer practice related questions and may be contacted directly at karenterzano [at ]gmail.com.

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