Sky Island Zen

                           Upcoming Workshop!

Ben Connelly, a Soto Zen teacher from the Minnesota Zen Meditation Center, will be visiting Tucson and will be conducting a workshop on the Yogacara teachings in his new book “Inside Vasubandhu’s Yogacara: a practitioner’s guide”. He will also be giving a public talk on Friday evening the night before at Zen Desert Sangha (see below)


Saturday, May 13, 2017, 1 pm – 4 pm

Sky Island Zen

4002 E 4th street (southeast corner of Longfellow)

Park along Longfellow or along the park

Suggested donation  $25

Please RSVP Mary or Manoj in the contacts at the end of this message to save a spot as space is limited

About Vasubandhu

In fourth-century India, one of the great geniuses of Buddhism, Vasubandhu, sought to reconcile the diverse ideas and forms of Buddhism practiced at the time and effectively integrated into a single Yogacara system, which continues to have great influence in modern Tibetan and Zen Buddhism.

About Ben Connelly

Ben Connelly is a Soto Zen teacher and Dharma heir in the Katagiri lineage. He teaches at Minnesota Zen Meditation Center. Ben is also a professional musician and teaches mindfulness in a wide variety of secular contexts. He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Copies of the book can be purchased here or ordered from Antigone Books


Shozan Mary Koopman

Public Talk

Friday, May 12, 2017, 7 pm – 8:30 pm

Zen Desert Sangha

3226 N Martin Avenue (Near the corner of Fort Lowell and Campbell)

Suggested donation $10 but no one will be turned away for lack of funds



without any idea
Sky Island Zen’s lineage is through Everyday Zen (, founded by Zoketsu Norman Fischer). Our guiding teacher is Hoka Chris Fortin, founding priest is Shozan Mary Koopman,  and Head of Practice is Dai Marie Olson.
                                                     Our Stories

laughing buddha chris

 Chris Fortin, holding/guiding teacher
Chris is a Zen priest as well as a MA, MFT psychotherapist and spiritual counselor. She leads Dharma Heart Zen  and is the guiding teacher for three meditation groups. She is one of the leaders and teachers in the Everyday Zen community, and is the co-founder of Honoring the Path of the Warrior, offering retreats and meditation and mindfulness practices for returning veterans. She leads retreats and workshops throughout the country.
                                Shozan Mary Koopman, founding priest

Mary has been practicing Zen for 25 years, studying with Everyday Zen founder Norman Fischer. In 2012 she began to prepare for priesthood and was ordained by Chris Fortin in June of 2014. She has been an RN for 40 years, the last 20 mostly working in hospice. Once ordained it seemed time to start a sangha here in Tucson in our Soto Zen lineage. Mary and Marie where introduced to one another by Norman because they were Everyday Zen students and both live in Tucson. They now have studied together for a number of years and together they are working to create a place for practice in an open and welcoming way that supports the growth of each of us as well as the  sangha,  a place for study with the focus on how to take the teachings into our lives and bring our lives into our practice.


Marie and Mary at Sky Island Zen 


Chris and Mary at a SIZ Aravaipa Women’s Retreat

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Marie with mokugyo
ALL ARE WELCOME! The mission of Sky Island Zen is to practice together, whether you are a first time or long-term practitioner. Not sure about your interest level? Please join us and find out!
 Email us or post to Facebook with any questions.

We are a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization.