Zen in America: a documentary

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Adam-TebbeI’m always very happy to encourage Buddhist creators, and Adam Kō Shin Tebbe‘s project to document the history of Zen in North America seems well worth supporting. Please head on over to his Kickstarter page and support this excellent documentary.

Zen in America is a multi-part series which will cover the history and practices of Zen in North America. Funding is the first major obstacle in getting any documentary off the ground and a detail every filmmaker wishes they could hop right over. The reality of fundraising is quite real, however, leaving many independent filmmakers like Tebbe to turn to sites like Kickstarter.com.

“Zen in America” tells its story through a patchwork of interviews with teachers of all North American Zen lines, recollections and experiences of practitioners, analysis by scholars and academics, archival footage and photographs, and footage shot on location.

Over the coming years, the director will travel throughout North America to talk to the leaders and practitioners of the tradition. Having only begun shooting for the film in July of 2013, the film already includes interviews with the following American Zen teachers:

Sojun Mel Weitsman, Hozan Alan Senauke, James Myoun Ford, Myoan Grace Schireson, Myo Denis Lahey, Jay Rinsen Weik, Karen Do’on Weik, as well as many other North American Zen practitioners.

Tebbe expects to be filming for the next 3 years of his life, estimating that the full DVD series will be available at some point in 2017. To learn more about the film, readers can head over to his project’s pitch page here.


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