We are excited to team up with Zen 2.0 as a media partner this year. Based in Kamakura Japan, Zen 2.0 is an international conference on Zen and mindfulness that integrates modern wisdom and diversity into Kamakura’s history and traditions. The event hopes to create a “soul connection” for what you could call an “awakening.”
The event will take place this September 21-22, 2019 at Kencho-ji (venue name) in Kamakura, which is roughly an hour south of Tokyo along the coast. We feel that their vision is very aligned with our own, which is focused on global consciousness, compassion, spiritual learning and mindfulness.
Zen 2.0 values compassion so highly that they list it as their first bullet for what they wish attendees to feel at the conference. In the middle of it all, it’s about meeting like-minded people who are on a journey to awaken the magic within while having fun in the process. This Mindful City of Kamakura is surrounded by nature and faces the water, which is nurturing and healing in itself.
Zen 2019’s Theme: Connectedness
As we enter the Reiwa Era, we are still dealing with the endless deluge of (mis)information from social media, which is adding to the stresses of our daily lifestyles and jobs. Frankly, this has been an issue we have been writing about for years now.
Although we are at the forefront of technology in northern California and I’ve done my fair share of launching tech start-ups, in the midst of it all, I have seen people losing the things they care about most: connections to the people they care about in their inner circle such as their closest friends and family members. Too consumed with the digital world and finding ‘connectedness’ online rather than in the flesh, people have begun to suffer.
Don’t misunderstand the statement — social media and the ability for us to connect to anyone in the world with a simple button click has brought us tremendous opportunities to connect at a global level, but over the last decade, the over saturation with all things digital has led to imbalance in our lives.
Not only has it led to disconnecting to people we’re close to (how often have you seen families or couples out to dinner at a restaurant and they’re looking down on their phones rather than talking to EACH other?), but it has led to a disconnection with ourselves.
Even if you don’t feel that personally, know that it is something that many feel, both in their personal and professional lives. Whether it’s a connection with their children, partner or work colleagues, many people talk about a ‘loss’ of connection or that its not as deep as they would like. You can certainly embrace technology and the growth and opportunities it brings to many parts of our lives while also embracing a life filled with joy, balance, compassion and connecting in the world of flesh, bones, sweat and tears. It’s about showing up holistically and authentically for those we care about most who may need to talk not text. It’s about showing up for those in our lives who need a physical hug and simply need to feel another. For those who need to see your eyes as they speak their truth.
One of the other things we’ve seen as people are online more and more is that they have less time to be in nature — to go for walks by themselves, sit at the edge of a river or an ocean and greet the waves. Nature is very restorative and not only does it bring us a sense of serenity and peace, but it helps us to go within and reconnect to ourselves, our Higher Self if you will.
At this year’s Zen 2.0, their hope is that the talks from speakers and their hands-on events and workshops, they want you to realize those truly precious connections you’ve forgotten and reclaim them. Their goal is to create ‘connections of the soul’ to prepare for an awakening and to support people as they go through that awakening. Bravo — a conference dedicated to kindness and compassion!!!
Kencho-ji: Over 760 Years Old
The venue this year for Zen 2.0 will be held at Kita-Kamakura’s Kencho-ji, the head temple of the Kencho-ji branch of the Rinzai School of Zen. The first and second Zen 2.0 events have been held at this historic venue that is over 760 years old. Many visitors to Kencho-ji all agree that it possesses an incredible energy and just by setting foot onto the holy grounds of Kencho-ji can really feel the refreshing atmosphere contained within.
Although we haven’t yet been (but are so looking forward to the experience), the whisper of wind, the rustling of leaves, and the chirping of birds all float through the halls of Kencho-ji. It sounds so rejuvenating and beautiful.
“Zen 2.0 will have the privilege of borrowing the sublime energy of Kencho-ji to host an event to impart upon the people of the world the importance of the connections in our hearts.”
Some of the speakers this year include Gengo Akiba Roshi, Keisuke Shimada, Shingo Isihara, Miki Kanamaru, Kazune Uchida, Kyoko “Myokyo” Denda, Madoka Maeno, Genki Shiota, Satoshi Ikeno, Daisuke Yanasawa, Dr. Jeffery A. Martin and others.
Check out their English website for more information. The price for a general two day admission pass is just under $200 so incredibly reasonable. Consider joining us this September in Japan for two days of compassion, kindness, love, mindfulness and connectedness in one of the most spiritual countries in the world. Also check out our Spiritual Events section for more reading.