Zen Buddhism and Well-being

There are three important elements in Zen meditation: calmness of mind, awareness of physical sensations, and observation of interactions between your physical body and social and physical environments. In our programs, you can learn not only how to meditate but also about Buddhist philosophy and history. Our programs focus on how you can incorporate Zen philosophy and meditation into your daily life as a self-cultivation practice. We will start with the introduction of Zen Buddhism and well-being. Then, we will practice a guided meditation and non-guided meditation. Then, we develop the discussion on “concepts” and “direct experiences” in Zen and Eastern philosophical traditions. We end with Q&A time.


Reverend Takafumi Kawakami

Shunkoin Temple, Kyoto, Japan

Reverend Takafumi Kawakami is the deputy head priest of Shunkoin Temple in Kyoto and annually teaches Zen meditation classes and retreats in English to 5,000 – 5,500 visitors at the temple. The participants include various business school groups, including HBS, INSEAD, IESE, Sloan, and so on. He co-organises and co-hosts long-term study abroad programs in Kyoto with various universities from the United States.

He teaches Japanese hospitality classes to employees from the sales and marketing departments from Toyota’s global offices and holds corporate wellness seminars and workshops for several corporations in Japan and the United States. His travels and talks have taken him to MIT, Brown University, Microsoft, TEDxKyoto, Mind & Life Institute’s ISCS & IRI, Eton College, and others. He is a member of the US-Japan Leadership Program (USJLP) by the United States-Japan Foundation.

Cultural Events

A Virtual Museum Visit of the Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art
Joseph Haldane in Conversation with Yutaka Mino

Zen Buddhism and Well-being
Reverend Takafumi Kawakami | Shunkoin Temple, Kyoto, Japan

Taste Washoku to Unveil Japanese Society: Encountering with Wagyu and Matcha
Kae Sekine | Aichi Gakuin University, Japan

Kobe: Japan’s Culinary Melting Pot
Aiko Tanaka | Osaka Shoin Women’s High School and University, Japan

Haiku Workshop
Emiko Miyashita & Hana Fujimoto | Haiku International Association

Asia at the Crossroads: Conversations on Food, Politics, and Culture
Haruko Satoh in Conversation with Daisuke Utagawa

Wadaiko Performance
AIE International High School