Explore the fundamental principles and transformational practices of Zen Buddhism


“Do not dwell in the past; do not dream of the future; concentrate the mind on the present moment,” said the Buddha.

Zen practice is all about meeting the present moment. This is done by training your attention so that you become finely attuned to the constant flow of your experience, exactly as it’s happening.

It’s about learning how to rest in your buddhanature: a state in which everything around you is allowed to reveal itself as infinitely interconnected and ever-changing. This is a dynamic process that involves your whole body and mind. It is the day-by-day, moment-by-moment path to waking up to the truest sense of yourself as a human being.

In Meeting This Moment led by Sensei Do-On Robert Thomas, you will learn how to meet each moment of your life with presence and openness through direct and insightful teachings on the fundamental principles and practices of Zen Buddhism. You’ll be introduced to the practice of Zen meditation, or zazen, and taught how to work skillfully with the habits of your mind. If you already have a Zen practice, this course will help you focus and deepen your understanding and commitment.

By the end of this course, you will have experienced an embodied Zen practice that will help you in all aspects of your life. Deepening your innate capacity for self-awareness, you will have new abilities to meet your real-life challenges and pursue new opportunities with greater clarity, creativity, and possibility.


The most important point is to live on each moment. You should live with the things you have right now and find new meaning in them. That is our practice.

 Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

Sensei Do-On Robert Thomas invites you to meet this moment...

What You’ll Learn

In this 7-part course, you’ll learn how to:

Start or deepen your daily meditation practice.

Be open to each moment through being in the body.

Use the practice of generosity to nourish yourself and others.

Make gratitude an essential part of your practice.

Embrace uncertainty.

Engage your life as a joyful, curious experiment.

A limited number of scholarships are available for this course. Click here to learn more and apply.

Meet the Teacher


A dedicated meditation practitioner for more than 28 years, Robert started practicing as a monk in Thailand, then spent six years in a Zen Buddhist monastery and 23 years living in Buddhist communities. In nearly 20 years as a Buddhist teacher, Robert has led over 100 classes, workshops, and retreats; offered courses on the principles and practice of meditation and mindfulness.

He has mentored hundreds of practitioners on how to deepen their meditation practice, apply it to workplace challenges, and extend it into their personal life. He provides support and encouragement for people of all backgrounds and experience levels to develop a meditation practice and expand their inner capacities for self-awareness, empathy, compassion, and wisdom, so that they can be a more positive, creative force for profound societal and systemic change.

Hear From Past Students...

Robert's straightforward Dharma commentary helped me understand [myself] in a new way…

Andrew Z.

I'm calmer and more able to meet everyday challenges with equanimity. I sleep better.

Sara O.

I am now meditating almost every day and discovering how to be still and how to be mindful. The program [that Robert led] will affect me for the rest of my life as I intend to continue with this exploration.

Lindsay B.

Course Curriculum

Here’s what you’ll explore in each session:

Begin Here, Now

  • What the Zen path of practice is and how to get yourself set up and started
  • The power of intention and clarifying your commitment to practice
  • How to make gratitude an essential part of your practice
  • The practice of Beginner’s Mind

Giving It All Away

  • The key to having a sincere practice: giving your attention to your inner voice
  • The power of letting things be and accepting this moment for what it is
  • How to use the practice of generosity to nourish yourself and others
  • The practice of Listening with the Whole Body and Mind

Sit Down, Receive Your Life

  • How to start and deepen your daily meditation practice
  • The importance of settling the breath, body and mind
  • How to accept everything as it comes, moment after moment
  • The practice of Stepping Back, and coming forward into the present moment

Feeling Your Way

  • How to open to each moment by being in the body
  • The benefits of going slower (and seeing more!)
  • The power and benefit of failing to control anything
  • The practice of Not-Knowing

See Everything As It Is

  • How to fully embrace uncertainty
  • What it means to wake up and see your buddhanature
  • How to see everything as boundless possibility
  • The practice of Getting Bigger

Go Forward With Joy and Curiosity

  • How to engage your life as a joyful, curious experiment
  • The importance of stopping (some things)
  • Learning to trust your practice as an unfolding process
  • The practice of asking questions, ”What is it?”

Live Life, Benefit All Beings

  • Living a life that’s true to you
  • The power of vow to transform your life
  • The way to speak with compassion at all times
  • The profound benefits of being humble
  • The practice of the Bodhisattva

Ready to get started?

 You'll also get access to these 5 bonus interviews

Learn more in these exclusive conversations with leading Zen teachers hosted by Sensei Do-On Robert Thomas.

Be Confident, Question Everything

with Marc Lesser, speaker, facilitator, workshop leader, executive coach, and founding CEO of SIYLI (Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute)

Seeing Everyday Life Through the Eyes of Compassion

with Linda Ruth Cutts, Central Abbess, San Francisco Zen Center

Heart and Head Together: Enacting the Bodhisattva Vow in the Workplace

with Susan O’Connell, Spiritual Director, Senior Living Community Project, and former President, San Francisco Zen Center

The Art of Dharma / The Dharma of Art

with Norman Fischer, founder, Everyday Zen Foundation, and former Abbot of San Francisco Zen Center

What Is Zazen Anyway?

With Furyu Schroeder, Abiding Abbess, Green Gulch Farm Zen Center

Get access to all five bonus interviews when you enroll in the course.


In our practice the most important thing is to realize that we have buddhanature.

Shunryu Suzuki Roshi

What's Included?

Here’s what you get with your enrollment:

Unlimited Access

Explore the complete course material at your own pace, on your own schedule.

7 Guided Sessions with

Do-On Robert Thomas

Learn all about the fundamentals of Zen practice, and how its benefits can transform your life.

Meditation Instructions

You’ll get detailed instruction on how to practice zazen, find a posture, find a sitting place and time that works for you.

5 Bonus Interviews with Zen Teachers

Learn from leading Zen teachers on a variety of topics through conversation with your teacher Do-On Robert Thomas.

Study Materials

Download materials in video and transcript to deepen your understanding and enrich your practice.

Upgrade: Bundle Two Courses and Save $75

A 6-week course exploring breath meditation techniques for settling the mind and cultivating awareness and wisdom.

With clarity, insight, and practical guidance, San Francisco Zen Center teacher Jiryu Rutschman-Byler explores the vital role of breath in Zen and Buddhist meditation, drawing on essential practice instructions directly from the Buddha and Zen teachers including Dogen, Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, and Master Zhiyi.

*Simply check the box indicated in the checkout to add this additional 6-week course at 50% off.


About San Francisco Zen Center

San Francisco Zen Center was established in 1962 by Shunryu Suzuki Roshi (1904-1971) and his American students. Suzuki Roshi is known to countless readers as the author of the modern spiritual classic, Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind.

San Francisco Zen Center has three practice places: Beginner's Mind Temple, in the vibrant heart of San Francisco; Green Gulch Farm, whose organic fields meet the ocean in Marin County; and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center—the first Soto Zen training monastery on the West coast—located in the Ventana Wilderness inland from Big Sur. These three practice centers offer daily meditation, regular monastic retreats and practice periods, classes, lectures, and workshops.

San Francisco Zen Center is a practice place for a diverse population of students, visitors, lay people, priests, and monks guided by teachers who follow in Suzuki Roshi's style of warm hand and heart to warm hand and heart. All are welcome.

San Francisco Zen Center's programs also reach out to the community, helping prisoners, the homeless, and those in recovery; protecting the environment; and working for peace. Suzuki Roshi's disciples and students of his disciples now lead dharma groups around the country.