Dana Paramita - The Perfection of Generosity


“One should know the Living Zen in which one puts their whole self. In this Living Zen or ‘Mokusho Zen’, one does not confine their Zen life to merely readings, discussion, writing or poetry, expecting enlightenment every day of their life to descend upon them from mysterious realms. Instead one finds it in one’s daily life, no matter where they may be.”
— Rev. Soyu Matsuoka Roshi, To Find a Bluebird, July 4, 1965

Dear Friend and Supporter of Silent Thunder Order (STO),

Silent Thunder Order’s mission is deeply rooted in Rev. Soyu Matsuoka Roshi’s teachings. STO’s efforts aim to give opportunities for us to experience the Zen life. We strive to continue his efforts for us all to experience “Living Zen”.

At this time of Spring OHigan, let us all renew our commitment to STO and the rich Dharma heritage we have inherited from Matsuoka Roshi and Taiun Roshi.  There are some exciting programs slated for 2020, but everything depends on member support.  We are asking you to please consider providing the financial support needed to fund our offerings to the Sangha for the current year.  Please look below for further details on new and continuing programs.  And thank you for your generosity in whatever you can share.  All contributions, in whatever amount, are deeply appreciated!

STO is excited about several initiatives to help you live the Zen life where you are.

Taiun Elliston Roshi, Abbot of STO, is now Sensei Online. He is available to local affiliates or other organizations via Skype for discussions. Taiun Sensei’s efforts increase our cohesiveness as a Sangha despite the many miles between affiliates across the United States and Canada.

Zenku Jerry Smyers, Associate-Abbot of STO, is offering One Day Meditation Retreats held via Zoom video conference. This allows those not near an affiliate to participate in a retreat without leaving home.

• Participate in Tuesday Evening Dharma Discussions via Zoom. This keeps Dharma study available to anyone regardless of location. Maurine Stuart's Subtle Sound: the Zen Teachings of Maurine Stuart will be the topic for the first trimester of 2020.

This October, the Precepts Retreat and the 9th Annual STO Conference will be held in Atlanta. The retreat and conference give STO sangha members and affiliates the opportunity to come together for zazen, dharma talks, meals, and fellowship.  As a sangha, we gather to review the past year, consider where we are as an organization, and plan for the future. This ensures STO is a dynamic organization responding to the needs of our Sangha.


Beginning a STO Supporting Membership

The needs of our Sangha Community cannot happen without you. Please tell us how we can assist you to develop and maintain a meaningful practice. STO Supporting Membership represents your commitment to ongoing support of STO. Your financial support enables us all to find Living Zen in each moment. As a Supporting Member we encourage your generous financial support. If possible, a contribution of $50 or more per month would be very generous. Yet we are grateful for whatever you are able to give.

Contact Zenku Jerry Smyers at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you can offer your time and efforts to our STO organization.

Ways to donate and become a STO Supporting Member:
(Please add a comment to your donation that indicates that this is a ‘STO Supporting Member Donation”)

1) You can send a donation by check made payable to Silent Thunder Order and send to:
“STO Treasurer, c/o Jerry Smyers, 25364 Old US Highway 93, Dayton, MT  59914”.

2) Billpay through your bank for a one-time, or recurring donation can be arranged. List payable to the Silent Thunder Order and send to the Treasurer at the address above. (No fees are deducted.)

3) By credit or debit card, go to the STO website.

4) Recurring monthly donation by credit card, via RegOnline.

5) Bank to bank transfer, one time or recurring donation can be arranged. Email Zenku Jerry Smyers, Treasurer, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call him at 847-721-0665.

Bowing in gratitude for your considered support,

Mitsugo Liz Lawlor, Board President, on behalf of all the STO Board of Directors