Veterans are the light at the tip of the candle, illuminating the way for the whole nation.  If Veterans can achieve awareness, transformation, understanding, and peace, they can share with the rest of society the realities of war.  And they can teach us how to make peace with ourselves and each other, so we never have to use violence to resolve conflicts again.                

Thich Nhat Hanh

Who We Are

Honoring the Path of the Warrior is a program fiscally sponsored by the San Francisco Zen Center, that has been assisting post-9/11 and Persian Gulf veterans in making a positive transition from military to civilian life since 2007.   Our founders and facilitators, Lee Klinger Lesser and Chris Fortin, both long-time Zen practitioners and teachers, originally came together to share a concern about what was happening to Veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, and since then have led one-day events and retreats for a growing community of over 250 Vets.

What We Do

Our programs combine nature and engaging physical activities, mindfulness, Sensory Awareness and meditation practices.  The intent is to provide Veterans with connection, community and tools that support them in using their own strengths and experiences to find a meaningful and productive path in civilian life.

We invite you to read more about our mission, what we do and why it matters on the About Us pages.

HPW needs volunteers!  Click here for more information.

Become a sponsor or learn other ways to help continue our work.


Veterans Mailing List

Supporters Mailing List


News and Events

Please join us in taking a stand to support veterans and reduce the suicide rate. Make a gift to HPW today.

Read about what HPW has accomplished in 2013.




Go to the Veterans section to learn about upcoming events, ways to get involved and resources that may be of interest to you.



Read About What Vets Are Saying…

Being a combat soldier during Operation Iraqi Freedom, I found myself experiencing a plethora of negative emotions and energies post-deployment. Like some combat soldiers, I was afraid to be perceived as a weakling if were to seek help.  We were trained to be Warriors.  When I heard about the meditation / mindfulness event, I was enthusiastic about getting together with other Veterans who experienced similar hardships as I had.   I was initially nervous and apprehensive about being in a group, but I felt instantly at home.  The physical event before the meditation brings us closer together as a team  The experience of meditation / mindfulness afterward have inspired me to practice taking a small respite everyday.  I encourage any Veteran to participate in these events that give a battered mind a place to heal.

– Mike Smith, US Army, OIF Vet