Maija Myosho Ijäs is a Finnish composer, musician, singer, vocal coach and a zen student of Roshi Egyoku from Zen Center of Los Angeles (ZCLA). Maija is one of the coordinators and organizers of the Peacemakers Finland.

Maija Myosho Ijäs

Maija Ijäs (born 1974 in Jyväskylä, lives and works in Helsinki) is a Finnish composer, musician, singer and vocal coach. Maija holds a Master of Arts degree from University of Jyväskylä from where she majored in both education theory and music pedagogy and graduated in 2005. She also holds an Estill Figure Professional (EFP) certificate in Estill Voice Model. Currently she is an Estill Master Teacher (EMT) Trainee under the guidance of Estill Vice President and CCI Mary McDonald Klimek (USA). 

Maija has been a freelance composer since 2003 and composed for Finnish National Theater, several City Theaters, smaller theater companies, and for her various orchestras in Finland. For her professional career as an artist she still uses her maiden name Maija Kaunismaa. As a professional singer she has been involved with several major productions around the world performing with Vox Aurea Choir at Carnegie Hall in New York and toured with Voices of Europe Choir performing with Icelandic artist Björk. She has also toured extensively in Europe with her own ensembles. 

She has been involved with over thirty professional theater productions in which she has composed, arranged, conducted, musical directed and played her music. She also did her solo performance in Finnish National Theater in 2011 and released her first solo album “Liian lyhyt hame - Kertomuksia keittiöstä” at the same time. 
Together with his husband Mikko Ijäs she has also produced a documentary film titled “The Origins -movie”, which is based on Mikko’s research on origins of art among the early hunter-gatherer societies. The film follows the lives of the indigenous people of the Kalahari desert and Northern Mexico. The film raises questions on indigenous rights on their own lands and freedom. 

Maija got involved with Zen practice in 2015 through the Helsinki Zen Center, but she has been actively engaged with the Zen Peacemakers International since 2017. 

During this involvement Maija has participated the first Finnish Street Retreat in Helsinki (2017), helped Mikko Ijäs with his translation work of Bernie Glassman's seminal book "Bearing Witness" in Finnish, and together with Mikko Ijäs they coordinated the first Finnish Bearing Witness retreat to Finnish Civil War Prison Camps in June 2018. 

Maija is been an Artist-In-Residence at the Fire Lotus Temple in New York in 2016 and at the Zen Center of Los Angeles (ZCLA) since 2017 where she frequently visits to work, teach singing, participate retreats and trainings. Her teacher is Roshi Wendy Egyoku Nakao, the Abbot and Head Teacher of the ZCLA. 

Roshi Egyoku gave her the Peacemaker Precepts in a Jukai ceremony held in April 2018. Maija was given a dharma name Myosho Angyo (Luminous-Voice Peacemaker). 

Maija hosts meditations with Mikko Ijäs at the Peacemaker Zendo in Helsinki, where she also teaches her vocal students. 


Maija Myosho Ijäs singing at Finnvox Studios
Maika Vuori with Maija Myosho Ijäs during the Civil War Retreat
Maija Myosho Ijäs aka Mrs. Clear-Throat
Peacemaker Maija Myosho Ijäs and Spirit Holder Maika Vuori bearing witness to Suomenlinna Prison Cam
Roshi Frank De Waele speaking with Maija Myosho Ijäs at Hennala Prison Camp execution site
Peacemaker Maija Myosho Ijäs bearing witness to Suomenlinna Prison Camp
Maija Myosho Ijäs
Maija Myosho Ijäs