Berkeley Buddhist Priory is a Buddhist temple following the tradition of Serene Reflection Meditation, which was known as Soto Zen in Japan and Ts’ao-Tung (曹洞 of Chan 禪) in China. The teaching and our practice emphasize meditation, guiding our lives by the moral Precepts of Buddhism, awakening the heart of compassion, and expressing it through selfless activity in everyday life.
The Priory is a temple of the Order of Buddhist Contemplatives (OBC), an international Buddhist Order, whose North America office is at Shasta Abbey located in Mt. Shasta, California. The Founder of both OBC and Berkeley Buddhist Priory is the late Reverend Master Jiyu-Kennett.
The Priory was established in 1973. It offers a regular schedule of meditation, Dharma classes, Buddhist services, day-retreats, and spiritual guidance. It also offers meditation instruction and workshops for beginners. Group tea meditation is offered weekly as well. There are no fees for participating in above activities or any other services that the Priory offers. Like other affiliated temples of OBC, the Priory is financially independent; we are supported entirely by donations of our congregation and friends.
The Prior of the temple is Rev. Kinrei Bassis, a Dharma heir of Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett. Rev. Kinrei was ordained as a Buddhist monk by Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett in 1979, and trained at Shasta Abbey. He received Dharma Transmission in 1982 and was named Master by Rev. Master Jiyu-Kennett in 1987. He has been the Prior of the temple since 1997. A selection of his Dharma talks and articles are available for download.
Temple Activities Update (4/09/2021):
The Berkeley Buddhist Priory is resuming all our normal schedule that we were following before the pandemic. We will be starting the normal temple schedule on Saturday, April 10 with 8am meditation period and morning service. Alameda county has relaxed the amount of people allowed at an indoor church service to 50%. When the number of people attending will make our meditation hall too full, we will hold the activity outside as we have been doing during the pandemic. We will still require wearing facemarks and maintaining some social distancing. If attendance is small and everyone attending has been vaccinated, we can forgo the wearing of facemarks. We will still continue to offer the Wednesday evening Dharma talk and all the Sunday morning activities on Zoom.