September Community Gathering

Huge thank you to the nearly 50 people who came out to join the community gathering last Sunday!

We had a silent Nyinthun which included a practice of the Sadhana of Mahamudra to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of its completion. Then a feast of a potluck to nourish our bodies and enjoy each other’s company. To begin the afternoon Mary Lang invited everyone to connect with the longing underneath our thoughts and opinions, and to checkin in groups of 3-4 about how the summer has been and what it feels like to be coming together as a community now. Incoming Interim Director Max Roberts-Zirker then led Open Space Technology – inviting people to host or join conversations throughout the building on whatever topic was most important to them.

These conversations were exploratory, a way of learning from one another and sharing with the community what we care about. They were expressions of group wisdom intended to plant seeds in all of us about where our community needs support, how our community might grow, and what questions are unresolved. They were not intended to be a report to decision makers, to come to any answer or solution, to convince anyone, or even to fix anything. These conversations are part of a larger, slower and more organic process of healing.

In our reflections at the end of the day, and in numerous conversations since, there has been a sense of energy and possibility percolating from this meeting. Below you can see pictures of the papers each group used to harvest the insights and ideas, and to write down the “powerful question” they were asked to bring back to share with the larger group.

Thanks to Bill W. for leading us in the Sadhana of Mahamudra
Thanks to Kristine C., Jen M., Austin S. for lots of prep work on lunch.
Thanks to City Feed Catering and Supply for donating some delicious food and drinks.
Thanks to Lourdes R-H.  and Austin S. for beautiful ikebana
Thanks to Felipe L. taking care of the audio system
Thanks to Jim K. and Ruth B. for sticking around to the very end to make sure the place was clean for the LGBTQ group to meet that night.

Stay tuned for more information about the center’s financial standing, continued conversations, and please save the date for the next community gathering, tentatively scheduled for January 19th.

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