Glossary of Zen Terms
Chiden: The steward who cares for the altars.
Doan: The person who keeps time in the zendo and plays instrumentation for service.
Dokusan: A formal, face-to-face interview with a teacher. (Not practice discussion; see below)
Doshi: The priest offering incence during srevice; the officiating priest during a dharma event.
Fukudo: The person who hits the han to announce zendo events and the mokugyo to accompany chanting during service.
Gassho: A mudra or bow with palms together, signifying gratitude.
Han: The hanging wooden block struck with a mallet to announce zazen.
Ino: The Ino takes care of people within the zendo, and maintain the forms of practice.
Jundo: Morning greeting by a teacher, at the beginning of morning zazen. As they walk behind you, raise your hands in gassho.
Kinhin: Walking meditation, usually between two periods of zazen.
Kokyo: The individual who leads the chants for services.
Mokugyo: The wooden drum played during Japanese chants.
Mudra: Hand or body position or gesture with symbolic meaning.
Okesa: Buddha's robe; a patched robe worn by priests.
Oryoki: Formal style of eating in the zendo using three bowls.
Pracice Discussion: An informal, one-on-one discussion about practice with a priest.
Rakusu: Buddha's robe; patched 'bib' robe, worn by laypeople who have received the precepts.
Samu: A longer period of mindful work.
Sesshin: 'To unify or touch the mind.' An intensive schedule of zazen, dharma talk, work practice and oryoki meals, lasting from one to seven days.
Shashu: Mudra used in standing or walking meditation.
Shika: The guest manager at the temple.
Shuso: The head student for a practice period.
Soji: A brief period of mindful work; temple cleaning.
Sutra: A scripture attributed to the historical Buddha.
Tenzo: The head cook and person who oversees kitchen practice.
Zabutan: A rectangular, flat cushion used for zazen, underneath the zafu.
Zafu: A round cushion used for zazen.
Zazen: Total awareness in an upright posture.
Zendo: The meditation hall.