Clowning around Tassajara

by | Jul 14, 2011 | Public Workshop Actions

Recently I had the great pleasure to teach a Clown Your Zen workshop at the Tassajara Zen Center. On the final morning, I proposed a spontaneous procession through this most wonderous mountain hot spring retreat. The offer was enthusiastically greeted and so we quickly planned a short excursion.  Playing with solemnity, ritual and bell ringing themes, we left the sanctuary of our workshop space and ventured down the dirt path of the narrow canyon headed towards the dining hall. We visited a few spots, and conducted mock ritual along the way including the temple bell, and a work crew meeting before ending up in the courtyard where guests were assembling waiting for the breakfast bell. There we zoomed around the area past delighted guests in a single file line stopping, investigating people and places before finally gathering in a tight circle. Enjoying a bit of complicity, we prepared, and then offered a  bell ringing and confetti shower moment. A lot of light and laughter surrounded our encounters.  The confetti thrown into the air and slowly floating down to earth was a colorful celebration.  And breakfast was most delicious. Thanks to Dorothy Carswell (who does amazing work rescuing turtles) for the spontaneous photos….

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