In 1996, Lola Lee, Osho, who passed away in 1997 asked the Ven. Mitra Bishop-roshi to guide her students in their practice. Beginning Zen practice in 1974, Mitra-roshi is a Dharma heir of Ven. Philip Kapleau-roshi. Ordained as a Zen priest in 1986, she completed her formal training at the Rochester Zen Center. In 1992 she went to Okayama, Japan, where she continued to practice under the guidance of the Ven. Harada Shodo-roshi, Abbot of Sogen-ji, a Rinzai Zen temple. When Mitra-roshi returned to the United States in 1996, she was formally sanctioned to teach by Kapleau-roshi, and in that same year was asked to come to Hidden Valley Zen Center to teach. Concurrently, she established Mountain Gate, a monastic practice center in the mountains of northern New Mexico. Taking the admonition, "There's no beginning to enlightenment, no end to practice," to heart, she continues to train intensively with Harada-roshi, including spending several weeks each year at Sogen-ji.
Roshi comes to Hidden Valley Zen Center on an ongoing and regular basis to lead sesshin [extended meditation retreats of between two and seven days], give sanzen [spiritual guidance in private interview], teisho [presentation of the essentials of Zen], lead workshops and do various ceremonies. Mitra-roshi also travels to other locations to lead sesshin and all day sittings.
You can visit the Mountain Gate website at: www.sanmonjizen.org
Sozui Schubert-sensei, after a visit to HVZC the summer of 2012, was asked by Mitra-roshi and Harada Shodo-roshi to come to HVZC as junior teacher. She arrived May 15, 2013 and has received a warm welcome from the Sangha.
Born in Hildesheim, Germany, in 1965, after receiving a Master's degree in architecture in Munich, she went to Japan in search of an authentic Zen master. She found her teacher in Harada Shodo-roshi, abbot of Sogen-ji Monastery in Okayama, Japan, and after a short return to Germany she returned to Sogen-ji for full time training and remained there for the next 20 years. She was sent to Hungary in 2002, at the request of Harada-roshi, to help get the fledgling Hungarian Zen Buddhist sangha on its feet, and also worked with the Zen groups associated with Sogen-ji in Latvia, Italy, and Russia. She was also asked to establish a Zen Buddhist group in Munich. During that period she returned regularly to Sogen-ji for continuing intensive training.
Mitra-roshi has known Sozui-sensei since they were both in training at Sogen-ji beginning in the early 1990's, and Roshi assisted in Sozui-sensei's ordination as a Zen Buddhist nun in October 1995. Her Buddhist name, Sozui, means "the Origin of True Happiness."
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