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Thread: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

  1. #1

    Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    I am thinking of starting a local sitting group. We have one such group in town, but unfortunately they meet on the one day I can't make it. Has anyone done this before and what advice would you offer? Other than how to locate other interested people, I am clueless on any other details that need to be attended to, such as where to meet, etc.

    Gassho,
    Jen (Joshin)

  2. #2

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Hi Jen,

    Ya need Zafus (BYOZ is fine) and a bell probably. You can meet in a living room of somebody's house. Depending on how mixed the group is from different traditions, you choose a book if you want, and read a few pages during the sitting (or play a recorded talk by a teacher). Simple as that. Other than that, lots of sitting!

    Oh, and don't forget the cookies. I always like the cookies after the Zazen!

    Gassho, Jundo

  3. #3

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Thank you Jundo, I would have forgotten the cookies! And perhaps some tasty liquid to wash them down with I have a tendency to over complicate things, thank you for reminding me that simplicity is best.

    Gassho,
    Jen

  4. #4

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jen
    I am thinking of starting a local sitting group. We have one such group in town, but unfortunately they meet on the one day I can't make it. Has anyone done this before and what advice would you offer? Other than how to locate other interested people, I am clueless on any other details that need to be attended to, such as where to meet, etc.
    Is the already functioning group a community you would like to be part of? If yes, do they already have a teacher? Either way, approach the person(s) in charge of keeping the group going. They might open to having another day for meditation practice. In my local sangha, we tinkered with the days. We finally decided to have Friday as our "anchor" day for practice. Nevertheless, we were aware that others in the path were not able to attend on Friday's. So, one of the sangha members volunteered his home for Wed's to sit at his home. Another members has volunteered another day to sit at his in the opposite part town.

    Just an idea.

  5. #5

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Hi.

    We here, read a book and sit together every two weeks (some of us sit together more often).
    We also have an different "doshin" (guy who runs things) who fixes the food, the sitting and such each time.
    People most often bring their own "sittingthings", but we are looking in on getting some that can stay there all the time

    The main thing is to see to that all are "comfortable and enjoying it".

    Mtfbwy
    Tb

  6. #6

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Thank you for all the input! The local group is limited by their use of a community room that is only available on Saturday mornings. I was given the idea by a friend to ask our Shin temple if they would be willing to let us meet there, which may be helped by the fact my family is a member of the temple :wink:

    I have been in charge of writing groups in the past but writers seem to require a lot of rules in order to get along. Not sure if it is our creative spirits or just that we like to nitpick each other!

    Thank you!
    Jenny

  7. #7

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jen
    I have been in charge of writing groups in the past but writers seem to require a lot of rules in order to get along. Not sure if it is our creative spirits or just that we like to nitpick each other!
    Even the Buddha needed to set down rules to get his nuns and monks in line. :mrgreen:

    Vinaya

  8. #8

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Just a note to say I took the plunge I started a group and scheduled the first meeting on meetup and placed a craigslist ad. Thank you for all the wonderful advice!
    Gassho,
    Jen (Joshin)

  9. #9
    Treeleaf Unsui rculver's Avatar
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    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Good Luck!!

    Ron (Shugen)

  10. #10

    Re: Thinking of starting a local sitting group- Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jen
    Just a note to say I took the plunge I started a group and scheduled the first meeting on meetup and placed a craigslist ad. Thank you for all the wonderful advice!
    Craiglist! I had never thought of that! I learned something new today.

    Best in your practice and with your group.

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