“In zazen, leave your front door and your back door open. Let thoughts come and go. Just don’t serve them tea.”

—Shunryu suzuki roshi

Our Practice Locations

Zen Fields is a 501c3 non-profit organization located in central Iowa. Our aim is to provide opportunities for people to practice meditation and to study the Buddhadharma. We strive to address the suffering that exists in multiple layers:

Pure Land of Iowa

Pure Land of Iowa began as a small weekly service in one of its teachers homes in 2005. It later moved into a large practice space located at 8364 Hickman Road, in Clive, Iowa. Pure Land of Iowa provides a home for three different traditions of Buddhism.

Zen Fields in Ames

The Society of Friends or Quakers advocate for being directed by one's "inner light." In this sense Quakerism is compatible with the teachings of Zen which believes that all beings have the light of Buddha within them. Friends Meeting House is located at 121 S. Maple Avenue in Ames, and has been hosting Zen Fields meditation retreats since the beginning of the pandemic. Quakers believe

Testimonials on Daishin McCabe

The efficacy in which Eric facilitated his services was attributed to how he exhibits excellent traits of an effective helper.  These include: warmth, genuineness, empathy, respect, immediacy, concreteness, confrontation, potency, and self-actualization.  The most outstanding of these was warmth, as he easily drew people towards him, clients and staff included."
addiction treatment center counselor
[Daishin’s] broad and lengthy access to Dai-En’s teachings, his travels to other Buddhist facilities, both in the U.S. and Japan, his study of other mindfulness practices and other religions, and his incorporation of yoga training into his own teachings has provided him with the skill and understanding to impact in deep and positive ways those in need of help in our society.
Dharma student
“I have worked with Eric McCabe for much of the last year and have been highly impressed by his efforts with our clients, and his sense of teamwork with the staff.  On many levels he is probably the most effective chaplain I’ve worked with."
“I have found in all my dealings with Rev. McCabe that he is flexible, friendly, articulate, and very skilled in communicating on both a professional and personal level.”
university professor

Resident Teachers

Our teachers travel between Ames and Clive, Iowa, providing practice opportunities and consultations with students close to their homes.

Daishin McCabe

Soto Zen Priest

Reverend Daishin Eric McCabe is a priest in the Soto Zen school of Buddhism in Japan. With a keen interest in Ecology and the World’s Religious traditions, he received his B.A. in Religion and Biology at Bucknell University in 1995.

His early mentors were Prof. John Grim and Mary Evelyn Tucker with whom he studied Inter-religious Dialogue with a special interest in Indigenous lifeways. He subsequently apprenticed with Patricia Dai-En Bennage Roshi of Mount Equity Zendo for 15 years.

During this time, he trained at several Soto Zen Monasteries in Japan as well as in France with the Venerable Thich Nhat Hanh. In 2013, he continued training in the art of spiritual direction and Chaplaincy at Wellspan Hospital in Pennsylvania. He is recognized as an International Zen Teacher (Kokusaifukyoshi) by the Soto Shu.

At present Daishin teaches at the Pure Land of Iowa, offers Trauma Sensitive Yoga for mental health at Broadlawns Hospital, and lectures on the World Religions at Des Moines Area Community College. He resides with his wife, Reverend Sara Jisho Siebert, and their son, Malcolm, in Ames, Iowa.

Portrait of Jisho Sara Siebert

Jisho Sara Siebert

Soto Zen Priest

Jisho Sara Siebert is a Soto Zen Buddhist priest who was led to Buddhism by the suffering around her and in her work to prevent domestic and sexual violence. 

Her path to understand suffering and joy led her to Los Angeles – where she first met her teacher, Gengo Akiba Roshi, then to Papua New Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Uganda, monasteries in Japan, and Haiti. 

At present she works for Beyond Borders, an organization working in Haiti, committed to preventing violence against girls and women and ending child slavery. 

She is recognized as an International Zen Teacher (Kokusaifukyoshi) by the Soto Shu and teaches at Zen Fields in Ames, Iowa.

Zen Fields Leadership

Zen Fields is a 501c3 non-profit organization and a member of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association.

Daishin McCabe


Keith Knapp

Board Member

Steven Cannon

Board Member

Jisho Siebert

Board Member

Jie Shao

Board Member

Minniette Milligan

Board Member

The words Zen Fields and a signature stamp next to a spare ink pen outline of a meditator in a field


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