I fully intended on forming a local sitting group after Jukai but lacked the motivation and energy. However, despite not having distributed flyers as planned, I forgot that I had put a listing up on Buddhanet and several people replied to that. As a result, this Thursday two people plan on joining me for zazen at my rather compact flat and possibly continuing that on successive Thursday evenings.
Ideally, I would like to sit two periods of zazen (maybe 20/25 minutes) with 10 minutes of kinhin in between. However, my front room is really not of a size for kinhin to happen with more than two people so might be a non-started. There is outside space for warmer evenings but that will depend on whether participants are sufficiently bold to do kinhin in a place where people might walk by.
So, if I don't opt for kinhin, I was wondering about instead having the sits sandwiching some kind of discussion, possibly about how our weeks have gone in terms of practice (although I know how that can quickly degenerate into general chat) or else conversation around a book we are all reading such as Opening the Hand of Thought. Does giving a chapter of reading seem too much like homework, though?
I would greatly appreciate input from those who currently run a similar group and also on the question of how much liturgy to use? At present I will ask participants about chanting The Heart Sutra and otherwise just end with the metta verses. Since neither current interested parties are Buddhist per se, I hesitate to include the four vows and verse of atonement.
Also, I produced a small website that anyone interested could look at in order to gauge if it resonatess with them. Any opinions on that are also very welcome. It is intended to give sufficient basic information without looking like I am setting myself up in a teaching role or giving the impression that it is anything other than a bunch of people sitting in a front room and maybe reading some popular books.
With thanks in advance.