This post is the fourth in a series on the Zen precepts. If you want to start at the beginning, you can start here.
Sangha is a relatively new development in my Zen practice. I did not officially join a sangha until 2007 when I began attending sesshins in Atlanta with our guiding teacher Taiun Elliston, and not even officially-officially until I received Jukai in 2008. Before then I was an attendee at a series of Zen groups in the different places I lived, but I did not have a teacher. Beyond that, I did not feel a part of any community. This was, in part, a geographic issue, related to the now-standard itinerant nature of early-career academia. I did not want to make a commitment to a group or teacher not knowing how long I might be in a particular location. Continue reading