Seishin Jack Fitterer, an ordained soryo (Tendai lineage priest) , leads the sangha. He began his study of Buddhism in 1971 and his formal practice in 1976. He received doshu (temple assistant) ordination in 1998 and soryo ordination in 2003 from Ven Monshin Paul Naamon. In 2010 he again received soryo ordination from Ven. Komori Shukei. From 1998 to 2005 he led Higashi Tendai Buddhist Sangha in Great Barrington, MA, and established Celestial Drum Tendai Sangha in 2007, while remaining active at the Tendai Buddhist Institute, the official representative of Tendai Buddhism in North America and Europe. He lives with his wife Taff and three cats in Indian Lake.
Daichi Jim Curry began his study of Buddhism under Seishin in 2007 and soon thereafter began training for ordination. In June, 2010 he was ordained doshu (temple assistant). It is his great honor and pleasure to assist Seishin and all the members of the sangha in whatever task needs to be done. He aspires to provide the sangha with opportunities to explore Buddhist practices to supplement meditation. He is a lifelong resident of Indian Lake.
About Celestial Drum Tendai Buddhist Sangha
“Tendai” is a Japanese school of Buddhism going back 1,200 years, and several hundred years before that in China. We are affiliated with the Tendai Buddhist Institute in Canaan, NY, the authorized representative of Tendai Buddhism in North America and Europe.
“Sangha” is the Sanskrit term akin to “congregation”—those who practice the Buddhist path together and considered one of the essential elements in developing and maintaining one’s own Buddhist practice. While there is now a seemingly endless supply of information in print and on the web about Buddhism, it is difficult for the beginner to sort it all out and know where to begin. Likewise, the more experienced practitioner finds it difficult to maintain his or her practice without the support of like-minded friends. Both find a qualified teacher useful in providing the teachings and practices in a form that is appropriate for their individual needs. The aim of the Sangha is to provide mutual support for those who wish to investigate or formally follow the Buddhist path, and to be of use within our local community, Indian Lake and the central Adirondack Mountain region of upstate New York, as a manifestation of the fruits of that path.
Every Monday evening, year-round, we meet for meditation beginning at 6:30 p.m. at 6393 West Main St. (Route 28/30, yellow ranch house on the south side of the street), Indian Lake, NY. We begin with a conversation about Buddhist meditation method and practice as well as its wider application to daily life. The formal practice begins with chanting the Daily Service. We then sit in meditation for two period of 24 minutes. If you are new to meditation we offer instruction before the service begins. Whether you are a long-time resident of the area or a visitor on vacation, please feel welcome to join us. The sessions are open to newcomers, the curious and those experienced in meditation of all traditions. The evening ends with tea, home-baked treats and time for friendly conversation. Email fitterer (at) frontiernet.net for more information.
From June through August in addition to our Monday meetings we also hold silent meditation every Thursday evening at 6:30 p.m. There is no Dharma talk or chanting–just two 24-minute periods of silence. In between the two there is a brief session of walking meditation. Everyone is welcome to join us.
This website provides a very basic introduction to Buddhism generally, and especially as taught and practiced within the Tendai school. The material you’ll find here is based upon the sorts of questions that are asked by folks who have no or only slight knowledge of Buddhism who first come to the weekly meditation service held by Celestial Drum Tendai Buddhist Sangha. Other, more detailed resources are available and teachings and practices at the Sangha range from basic to advanced.