What is life about? Not just about doing something good, but above all about leaving the bad stuff behind. Or, as Erich Kästner aptly put it: “There is nothing good unless you do it.” A maxim to which the members of the Zen Center in Riederich also feel committed. The meditation center in Entenbachstrasse has been in existence since 1989 and around 50 members regularly come here to practice zazen together. And the trend is rising: “More and more people are coming to us,” says Professor Henry Marc, or Henry E’nō Tai sen Rōshi, as he is known as the master. These are people from all social, societal and religious backgrounds and from all professions.

Free in heart and mind

It is important to the master that these people are free in heart and free in mind, and that they are committed to following a path of simplicity and humility, love and mindfulness. At the Zen Center, they learn to be mindful and respectful of everyone, including themselves. The evenings together begin with a tea ceremony and recitations of ancient Japanese sutra. “These provide guidance on how to look at life,” explains Henry E’nō Tai sen Rōshi. For Henry Marc, the secret of mindfulness lies in not dividing your attention. To be in the here and now, rooted in the present, not in the past and not in the future, which is still uncertain. The atmosphere at the Zen Center is correspondingly relaxed and laid-back. Henry E’nō Tai sen Rōshi explains what Zen is all about and how the meetings are organized. Claudia Chio-sen Castro serves jasmine tea, which is brewed in the traditional way, while the teacher Klaus Tadashi Taiki Dai’man Konin listens.

All three are wearing traditional clothing and are delighted to welcome their guests. One of them is Marc Lippe from Maltesern Neckar-Alb and Manuela Hepp-Röck from the Eichendorff-Realschule in Reutlingen. This year, they will receive 3,000 and 5,000 euros in donations, with the organization distributing donations to a total of nine institutions (see information opposite). The organizations selected are those that help others and are often in need of support themselves. Whether it’s children in need or suffering animals, women seeking protection in women’s shelters or rescuers who need adequate equipment: “We support those who we consider worthy of support and who urgently need it,” says Henry Marc. The special thing about this is that every cent received in donations is passed on in full. All expenses incurred by the organization, be it for paper, postage or telephone charges, are not taken from the donations but paid for separately by the Zen and The MZM Gesundheitszentrum (Health Centre).

This naturally increases the volume of donations, which is very impressive at 34,000 euros. The Malteser volunteers are particularly dependent on donations, explains district manager Marc Lippe, as there are visiting and hospice services, as well as telephone services for lonely people. Training and clothing also have to be paid for, so every donation comes in handy. The Eichendorff secondary school is also reliant on support, as teacher Manuela Hepp-Röck explains: She has launched a major music project together with the Württemberg Philharmonic Orchestra, from which many children benefit. “They often surpass themselves on stage,” she observes time and again. Especially in these uncertain times, this should be a ray of hope for many.

The Ray of Peace organization donates 34,000 euros

The Riederich Zen Centre and Professor Henry Marc’s MZM Health Centre in Eningen regularly support aid projects around the world with their aid organization “Ray of Peace”. A school in India and a street children’s project in Kyrgyzstan were both supported. The organization does not take any funds from the donation pot; everything goes to those in need.

This year, several institutions from the region will receive donations. The organization is distributing a total of 34,000 euros to the Malteser aid organization in Metzingen, Greenpeace Stuttgart, the Eichendorff-Realschule Reutlingen and the Württembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen, the DLRG local group in Metzingen, the Reutlinger Tafel, the Kinderschutzbund Reutlingen, the Frauenhaus Reutlingen and the Reutlingen/Metzingen animal shelter.

You can get in touch via the Internet addresses: : www.zenzentrum.de and www.ray-of-peace-organisation.de

Translated with DeepL.com (free version)


Riederich Center: Master Henry E’nō Tai sen Rōshi (left), Claudia Chiyo-Sen Castro and Klaus Tadashi Taiki Dai’man Konin present cheques to Marc Lippe from Malteser International and Manuela Hepp-Röck from Eichendorff-Realschule.
Photo: Thomas Kiehl Editor: Anja Weiß