May 9, 2011
Prison Correspondence Program

There is an ongoing need for people willing to be pen pals to incarcerated practitioners. To be a correspondent you need not be a teacher, a longtime practitioner or any sort of expert—just a good spiritual friend.

All letters from prison are addressed to the Zen Center and forwarded to the pen pal (who may also use a pseudonym for added privacy) so that his/her home address is not given out.

We also have a fund which allows us to send dharma books to prisoners without charge.

For many of these prisoners we provide the only access to the Buddhist teachings available.

If you are interested in learning more about this program or in volunteering for it, please contact Outreach Coordinator Jeffrey Schneider at jeffrey.schneider@sfzc.org or 415 354-0379.

Joshua Sandeman
Arts & Culture, Features, Zen Practice

Medicine and the Dharma

Joshua Sandeman, a former SFZC resident, is a Nurse Practitioner based in Salem, Oregon. “Medicine puts me face-to-face with all manner of human suffering and it can be a challenge to take care of feelings of burnout, detachment, and despair."