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Daily Practice of the Month

Our needs are few; our wants are many.

About Us

Dharma Drum Mountain DDM Toronto Centre is a community that practices Chan Buddhism in the Dharma Drum Lineage. Our practices include regular meditation, chanting, study groups and teachings under the guidance of monastic sangha and lay teachers. We are a Canadian registered charity located in Toronto, Ontario. Started in 1998 , the Centre has since become the spiritual home for people from all walks of life.

Our aim is to help everyone discover the wisdom within themselves, as well as promote a peaceful and healthy society through cultivation of the mind.

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 2022 Year in Review

Our Core Values

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Authentic Buddhist Teachings for a Modern World

DDM Toronto is blessed to have many visiting monastic teachers and lay teachers from around the globe to provide genuine Buddhist teachings to our practitioners. In addition to drawing from the practices of both Linji and Caodong schools, the DDM lineage integrates key features of both Indian and Chinese Buddhism, as well as evolving its methods to suit the needs of today’s changing world.


Although the world changes, the need for guided practices to unearth one’s inner wisdom remains the same across time. The teachings promoted through DDM Toronto have a clear lineage tracing back to Shakyamuni Buddha as expounded over 2,500 years ago.

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Diversity of Practices

DDM Toronto Centre offers a variety of regular practices, including meditation, chanting, tea Chan, drumming, study groups, and volunteer opportunities.


Sometimes referred to as “Dharma doors”, each path of practice has something to offer according to one’s individual skills, lifestyle, and interests. These practices share a common foundation of applying the timeless wisdom of Chan to one’s daily life and communities.

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Globally Interconnected

Dharma Drum Mountain is a global Chan practitioner community spanning several continents and localities, including America, Europe, Asia, and Oceania.


As part of the global community, DDM Toronto Centre members share their own spiritual journeys and gain support from fellow practitioners locally. With the recent COVID pandemic, DDM Toronto Centre strives to continuously support the practice of Chan by expanding its activities to online formats.

Improved Well Being

Among the many benefits of adopting Chan practice into daily life, one can enjoy:

-Improved physical health
-A positive mental outlook
-Better sleep
-A moderate lifestyle with fewer wants
-Effective ways to cope with stress and vexations
-Greater harmony between self and others
-Expanded self-awareness
-Sense of inner meaning and fulfilment
-Wisdom to handle situations with care and equanimity

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Dharma Drum Lineage of Chan Buddhism 

Our Lineage

In order to address the needs of people from both East and West in modern times, Master Sheng Yen established the Dharma Drum Lineage of Chan Buddhism. Our lineage follows two traditions - Linji which uses the Huatou method, and Caodong which uses the practice of Silent Illumination. We also integrate the features of different schools in Chinese and Indian Buddhism. While committed to tradition, we further incorporate a variety of other activities to accommodate the needs of contemporary society. For more details, please refer to The Legacy of Chan.

Our Founder

Master Sheng Yen

Born in 1931, Master Sheng Yen lived through floods, droughts, and years of war while growing up in China. At the early age of twelve, he left home and became a monk. In order to flee from a chaotic China in 1949, he joined the army and left for Taiwan, later re-entering monastic life under Master Dongchu in 1960.

Master Sheng Yen was the 57th generational dharma heir of Master Linji Yixuan (d. 866) in the Linji school (Japanese: Rinzai) and a third-generation dharma heir of Master Xuyun (1840-1959). In the Caodong (Japanese: Sōtō) lineage, Master Sheng Yen was a 52nd-generation Dharma heir of Dongshan Liangjie (807-869), and a direct Dharma heir of Master Dongchu (1908–1977).

Throughout his life, Master Sheng Yen vowed to teach Buddhism in common language so that people can understand and apply in daily life. As Master Sheng Yen has noted, “The Dharma is so good, yet so few people know about it, and so many people misunderstand it.” 

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Our Teacher

Venerable Chang Wu

Venerable Chang Wu is the Abbess of Dharma Drum Mountain(DDM) Toronto Centre and Vancouver Centre.

Venerable Chang Wu began practicing Chan Buddhism with Master Sheng Yen in 1993, while she was a business professional in New York holding an MBA. In 2000, she joined the DDM monastic sangha while continuing to deepen her practice and understanding of Buddhism. Later, during her four-year stay in Taiwan, she gained new experiences through the publication and translation of Buddhist books.

Since over a decade ago, she has been actively leading retreats and giving Dharma talks in various cities in Canada, the United States, England, and Switzerland. In addition, she has often been invited to participate in inter-religious panels, end-of-life care dialogue, and some academic conferences.


DDM Toronto Centre welcomes you to join us in activities outlined under Program.
The Centre is supported by donors and volunteers. Unless otherwise specified,
all activities are offered free of charge with voluntary donation.


We look forward to seeing you soon!

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