Simon Senko de Boer, Sensei | II. Generation > Successor to Tenkei Coppens Roshi

Simon Senko de Boer, Sensei

Simon Senko de Boer studied political science at the University of Amsterdam and for some fifteen years was employed by a non-profit organization in The Hague as a manager for community building and environmental awareness. He started Zen practice when he met Tenkei during a workshop in 2000 and, inspired to help build up Zen River, became a resident in 2003. He pretty much immediately found his niche as an enthusiastic gardener and took on the temple grounds as his main field of work-practice. One of his creations is a well-tended garden that provides fresh vegetables for the sangha. Senko received Shukke Tokudo in 2005 and was Shuso in 2008. He was Shuso again in 2012 with Rev. Yasunori Hosokawa as Jokeshi for his Hossenshiki. In 2013 he went to Japan to attend the Toshoji Winter Ango led by Abbot Seido Suzuki Roshi. (Tenkei and Myoho had made a connection with Seido Roshi in Japan and were surprised to find out that he was good friends with Hojo-san and had also known Maezumi Roshi well.) After receiving Shiho in January 2014 with Nico Tydeman as Kyojushi, Senko has lectured at several venues and is now looking for ways to integrate his earlier career into his practice. Among other things he is the main contact person for other Buddhist groups in the area.

Since spring 2018 Senko Sensei is living and teaching at the Zen Boat in Groningen.

Since spring 2018 Senko Sensei is at home at Zen Boat Groningen:

From the May 2018 Zen River Update:

We are very happy to announce that the transfer of the Zen Boat – the beautiful houseboat in the centre of Groningen that our dear late friend and member Janneke Guermonprez bequeathed to Zen River – has finally received full legal status. It has taken some time because we had to wait for the local government to grant us the required mooring licence. But all the documents have now been completed and signed. This also means that Senseis Senko de Boer and Jifu Vulink, who were already provisionally living on the boat, can now really move over and step up the Zen Boat’s meditation programme. This marks the start of a whole new development for the sangha. Tenkei Roshi will officially inaugurate the Zen Boat at the end of a Weekend Sesshin there, on May 13 at 16:00 h, followed by a festive reception.

Zenriver "Zen Boat" Groningen
Zenriver “Zen Boat” Groningen

The Zen Boat is one of the outreach activities of Zen River Temple. Simon Senko de BoerHelma Jifu VulinkRobert Doin van de Roer, and Ingrid Ranka de Hullu – dharma successors of Tenkei Roshi – provide a daily programme of meditation and study classes that also run through the summer months. A weekend City Sesshin (retreat) is held once a month. Situated on a houseboat, the zendo (meditation room) is within walking distance of Groningen train station. Classes are held in an informal setting, and the program is based on Four Elements of Training: 1) Zazen, a form of sitting meditation that makes it possible to experience our deepest being and to gain clarity about our function in this life. 2) Zen Ritual, active forms of group meditation that help us develop a mutual connection with others. 3) Study, research of Buddhist scriptures throughout the ages that support the practice of Zen. 4) Bodhisattva Activity, training in living a life of wisdom and compassion based on well-tested Buddhist guidelines. For more detailed information on the Four Elements, please click here.

The Zen Boat is open to anyone interested in Zen practice. Full instruction is given to all newcomers. Questions related to practice can be asked within the group, or individually by appointment with one of the teachers.

Calendar of Events

March 23 City Sesshin, led by Jifu Sensei
April 67 City Sesshin, led by Senko Sensei
May 1112 City Sesshin, led by Jifu Sensei
June 89 City Sesshin, led by Senko Sensei
July 67 City Sesshin, led by Jifu Sensei


  • Monday 7:00-8:00 zazen 19:30-21:00 zazen + daisan
  • Tuesday 7:00-8:00 zazen 19:30-21:00 zazen + daisan
  • Wednesday 7:00-8:00 zazen; 17:00-18:15 series of introductory classes
  • Thursday 7:00-8:00 zazen 19:30-21:00 zazen + study class
  • Sunday 9:30-10:30 zazen
  • City Sesshins monthly, Saturday 6:30 – Sunday 17:00 hrs

Introduction: Please call or email to make an appointment for a first meeting before the introductory class.

Language: Classes are held in English and Dutch. Contributions for membership includes all classes and private interviews upon request.

Location: Houseboat ” De Grote Gele Kwik”
Winschoterdiep 1027
Groningen 9724 GT

Contact: Tel. +31-50-7503343, email:


Contributions can be paid by bank transfer (see below) or in cash upon arrival.

Zen Boat Groningen

Monthly membership €40
Weekly membership €10
Sunday morning free
Introductory course (6 classes) €60
City sesshin (with accommodation) €70
City sesshin (without accommodation) €50
City sesshins begin on Saturday 6:30 and end Sunday 17:00 
  Weekly/monthly membership for the Zen Boat includes all zazen, classes & interviews

Payment Information

Bank Transfer

IBAN: NL33INGB0009233632, Acc. name ‘Zen River’; Reference: ‘Zen Boat’

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