Judge: Buddhists Can Resume Meditating

NBC San Diego, Aug 3, 2005

Neighbors Complained About Traffic, Parking Violations

San Diego, CA (USA) -- Vietnamese Buddhist monks and San Diego County officials have reached a settlement that allows the monks to resume meditating on their monastery site near Bonsall, in northern San Diego County.

County planners had issued a cease-and-desist order against the monks for meditating and all other activities after residents complained that the large number of people participating in the meditations were violating traffic and parking laws.

Under the settlement, the county must also continue processing a 2004 permit application from the Vietnamese Buddhist Meditation Congregation to expand on the property, Senior Deputy County Counsel Judy McDonough said Tuesday.

The settlement also ends a lawsuit filed in June by the monks, alleging that the county discriminated against their application.

The monks established a monastery on the nine-acre property in 2001 for the followers of the Mayahana school of Zen Buddhism.

They want to add three buildings and a 72-space parking lot to the property.

It now contains a three-bedroom house