From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sanzen (参禅), aka nisshitsu (入室), means going to a Zen master for instruction. In the Rinzai school, it has the same meaning as dokusan, which is specifically a private interview between student and master,[1] often centering on the student's grasp of an assigned koan. If the master rings a bell to dismiss the student, this means the student's understanding is not right and that their work with the koan must continue. It is typically held twice a day in a monastery, though during a week-long sesshin sanzen may take place as often as four times in one day.[2][3][4][5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Fischer-Schreiber 1989, pg. 306
  2. ^ Loori, 80
  3. ^ Suzuki, 105-106
  4. ^ Chadwick, 249
  5. ^ Omori, 145


  • Chadwick, David (1994). Thank You and OK!: An American Zen Failure in Japan. Arkana. ISBN 0-14-019457-6. OCLC 29638449.
  • Loori, John Daido (2002). The Art of Just Sitting: Essential Writings on the Zen Practice of Shikantaza. Wisdom Publications. ISBN 0-86171-327-3. OCLC 49773732.
  • Fischer-Schreiber, Ingrid; Schuhmacher, Stephan; Woerner, Gert (1989). The Encyclopedia of Eastern Philosophy and Religion: Buddhism, Taoism, Zen, Hinduism. Shambhala Publications. ISBN 0-87773-433-X.
  • Omori, Sogen; Dōgen Hosokawa; Roy Kenichi Yoshimoto (1996). An Introduction to Zen Training: A Translation of Sanzen Nyumon. Kegan Paul International. ISBN 0-7103-0534-6. OCLC 35042686.
  • Suzuki, D.T.; Zenchu Sato (2004). The Training of the Zen Buddhist Monk. Cosimo Classics. ISBN 1-59605-041-1. OCLC 67391001.