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What can you do if you have not discovered a nearby location to practice meditation? One good response: D.I.Y. Here are 7 tips from Rod Meade Sperry to get you started.

A row of meditation cushions.

< img src= alt="A row of meditation cushions."width=735 height=420 data-wp-pid=224131 > Picture by Alma Ayon.

Belonging to a meditation group is a terrific thing: it keeps us motivated in our practice, and it guarantees that we have a relationship with sangha, the third of Buddhism’s “ 3 jewels “– ideally, a fulfilling, heart-opening experience in itself. If you don’t have as much access to a group as you ‘d like, why rule out beginning one? I have actually become part of starting two groups and have actually found that making it work is not always as hard as one may expect.1.

Learn more about the Buddhist-friendly groups in your area

Are there Buddhist groups near you? Check Google, and Yelp, and the Lion’s Roar Buddhist Directory. Perhaps there’s more available than you ‘d thought. And if not, what about college spirituality groups? Unitarian Universalists? Make pals with spiritually minded, open-minded groups. See with them, and see how what you may wish to produce differs from what already exists, so that you can articulate why people might wish to participate in with you, too.2.

Make phone calls and ask others how they have actually done it

When a dear friend and co-worker and I decided to start our own Zen group, we called another local group in a various Buddhist custom and asked: how had they managed to acquire their best little area? Any guidance would have been welcome, however they did us better than that: they offered us an extremely reasonable rate to lease and share their area, offering us what we needed and them a little more monetary stability. Like that, we were off!

3. Don’t fret about making it expensive

Before we moved into our shared rented space, my colleague and I were satisfying at the office, sitting every day before the place opened for service. Unbeknownst to another, particularly prestigious coworker, we did our meditation on the floor in that coworker’s desk location. After a while, he shocked us by coming in early himself and discovered us there– which is what set us searching for our own space. Otherwise, meditating there in the office was perfectly fine! In some cases, all you need is a flooring or a chair, and a buddy.4.

Do not be scared to request discount rates

Once you have a somewhat sizable group, requesting discounts is completely feasible, particularly with considerate, Buddhist-friendly business. Once our Zen group ended up being a “real thing” with routine members, we connected to a meditation-cushion provider and asked if there was a group discount on zafus (meditation cushions) and such. There was, and we made certain to make the most of it.5.

Make sustaining your group a group activity

At Zen Nova Scotia, the neighborhood I belong to today, we’ve had events to do things like stuff homemade zafus and zabutons. The lots of hands get the work done and the time together reinforces the neighborhood. Creating relaxed occasions like meal gatherings or dharma reading groups can strengthen the sense of connection, too.6.

Be smart about cash

Request for– however (if you can help it) do not firmly insist on– donations. Individuals don’t mind contributing to an excellent cause, and a meditation group qualifies, if you ask me. And see if you can discover an accounting-wise friend or group member who can tell you the essential things to understand about your group’s opportunities and duties so far as taxes, bank accounts, non-profit status (must you grow enough to call for looking into it), and so on.7.

Promote!You ‘d think this one goes without saying, however it’s so simple to talk about promotion; it’s another thing to do it, and doing it ideal methods doing it consistently. Put up flyers at coffeehouse, university sites, near yoga studios, at friendly bookshops, and so on. Usage social media and events-listing websites to let people understand you’re out there. And, once again: keep reminding them.A closing bit of inspiration

I ‘d like to leave you with a short anecdote from the late Robert Aitken, from his book Miniatures of a Zen Master. Evoking the forefather who is stated to have brought Chan Buddhism (which would become Zen in Japan) to China, Aitken Roshi advises us that great things originate from modest beginnings. What’s more, humble things can in themselves be fantastic:

“The first meeting point of what became the Honolulu Diamond Sangha was the Aitken living-room in the residential area of Kuliouou in the fall of 1959. We sat on sofa cushions and chairs and timed our zazen with a Pyrex bowl and a wood spoon. Our clappers were restored from a construction site next door. Still, we tried to see to it that the way of Bodhidharma was not makeshift.”


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