The First Gate of Zen: Thinking with Reggie Pawle

You are cordially invited to join us on 24 June 2024, when our friend Reggie Pawle will be leading the Monday night meditation at Baan Aree, the beautiful location so generously made available to us by the Baan Aree foundation.

When people begin Buddhist meditation practice, they often are told to focus their attention on their breath. If you are a normal human being, when you start to do this, soon after your first or second breath, thoughts will arise. Many people have told me they can’t meditate because they think too much. This is a misunderstanding. So if you do continue, what do you do with your thinking? This is the first gate, or in Zen terminology, your first koan. This talk will be about: what do we do with our thinking while meditating?

Everyone is welcome, from beginners to experienced meditators. We meet to support and encourage each other in our practice.

Baan Aree is a Thai Buddhist Center, please wear something that is comfortable to sit in, and avoid tight-fitting clothes, shorts, sleeveless tops, and short skirts. There may not be sufficient drinking water on site, therefore you may bring your own water in a closed container. No other food/drinks are allowed in the main room.

As is usual with Buddhist teachings, there is no charge for this event. However, the Little Bangkok Sangha follows the Buddhist custom of Dana (generosity). The teachings and the venue are offered as an act of generosity, and those receiving them can, if they wish, reciprocate by making donations. These go towards the venue’s costs. A box for Dana will be provided.

· 6:00 pm Baan Aree opens
· 6:30 pm Dhamma talk
· 7:30 pm Q&A
· 7:45 pm Session ends
· 8:00 pm Baan Aree closes

Reggie Pawle PhD has been a Zen Buddhist practitioner since 1974. He has studied with Joshu Sasaki (Rinzai school) in the U.S. and with Sekkei Harada (Soto school) in Japan. He has also sat with teachers in Thailand, primarily with Buddhadasa Bhikkhu in 1989. His PhD dissertation was on Buddhist causality, attachment and no-self. Reggie works as a psychotherapist, integrating Buddhism and Western psychology. Since 1999 he has been based in Japan. He lived for three years in Bangkok (2015 to 2018), teaching psychology and studying Buddhism. He then returned to his Zen roots in Japan. His website is:

We plan a live broadcast of this talk on our Facebook group and the Baanaree YouTube channel:
It is also recorded for later viewing.

Please see this map and the pictures below for directions: