Busy Bees and the Zen Tweens

· Articles & Essays, From The Mountain

In early June, Monastery Apiary beekeeper Sansho Benton engaged ten Zen tweens and teens in a program introducing the youth to Monastery beehives.

With some caution due to participants wearing shorts, the youth suited up in sangha-borrowed protective gear and ascended the hill behind the garden. The intention was to discover how the worker bees and queen engage in building and maintaining the hives that produce 350-600 pounds of honey per season!

We split into two groups to accommodate everyone in protective gear. One of the groups had the opportunity to see the queen, but with the other group she was more elusive. 

The youth asked valuable questions about how the queen is selected by the community, and how she genetically evolves into her role assisted by the consumption of royal jelly from a young age. All participants truly enjoyed the experience of getting up close to such a humming, thriving source of life. We are most grateful to Sansho for taking the time and energy to provide such an opportunity. 

Do you have an interesting program you would like to offer? the Zen tween and teen program and facilitators welcome guest teachers who can offer unique perspectives to our young participants. Upcoming program dates include September 17, October 15, November 12 and December 10, 9am to noon at the Monastery.

Contact us for more information about participating, either as a tween/teen or as an honored guest, zentweens@dharma.net.

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