Weekly Email 6-7-21

Dear Common Ground Friends,

Today, I worked most of the day at Common Ground starting with a meeting this morning with Mark Nunberg, socially distanced in the community room. It felt good to be back in our practice space…and a little weird! This will likely be the case for many of us as we experiment with more in person activities. We will all find our own pace as we learn to embrace, or at least accept what is complicated alongside the joy and the fear…and everything else. As we learn to live with mindfulness, we also learn more fully that life is not ever limited to just one thing.

As I wandered through the building at Common Ground, imagining a slow thoughtfully paced increase of people flowing through the center, I felt happy. The lesson once again is that yes, simple happinesses can live right beside the insecurities, fears, and challenges. I found myself doing little sweet things to ready our physical practice space for you when the time is right, like taking down the unused thumbtacks from the bulletin board so that it looks a little less cluttered, straightening the towels and wiping the dust off the counters in the community room, and moving some of the unnecessary items into closets and down into the basement an so that you have plenty of space to feel comfortable. See below for both online and in person program offerings including a new in person 3 week morning tea and dharma conversation with Mark Nunberg.

Finally, two of our beloved Dharma teachers, Stacy McClendon and Ayo Yetunde, were featured recently on the Ten Percent Happier Podcast as part of a series marking the one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd.  I highly recommend making the time for taking in all that these two warm and wise beings have to offer. In their interviews you learn more about Ayo’s genius that helped to birth Buddhist Justice Reporter: The George Floyd Trials as well as Ayo and Stacy’s collaboration and friendship that was the foundation for Stacy’s brave and timely initiation of Common Ground’s Truth and Justice Vigil, which is still being held on Tuesday evening. See below for the Zoom link. Here’s Ayo’s interview: Meditation is Not Just a Solo Endeavor and Stacy’s: How to Be Courageous.

Warmest Wishes,

Shelly Graf
Associate Director

Upcoming Programs-In Person

Community Tea and Dharma with Mark Nunberg
3 Tuesdays, 8:00am-9:00am. More info here.

Silent Open Meditation In Person
Monday-Saturday, 7:30-8:30am,
Sundays, 8:30-9:30am:
come for one or both half-hour sits
more info here


Upcoming Programs-Online

Please consider joining us for our twice-annual Community Practice Intensive that will begin on Monday evening June 7th, 7 – 8:30 p.m. Central Time, and will end with a Daylong Retreat on Saturday, June 26, 9:30-4 p.m. More info and registration here.

  • STACY MCCLENDON & MARK NUNBERG lead the weekly Community Practice Check-In. 12:00-1:00pm. Zoom link here.
  • This week at the Truth & Justice Vigil we welcome MYOKEI CAINE-BARRETT, Bishop of the Nichiren Shu Buddhist Order of North America and guiding teacher and priest of Myoken-ji Temple in Houston. 6:00-7:30pm. More info here. Zoom link here.
SHELLY GRAF will lead the Weekly Practice Group, 7:30-9:00pm. Zoom link here.
  • SHELLY GRAF leads the weekly Community Practice Check-In9:00-10:00am. Zoom link here.
  • InterPlay with SPRUCE KRAUSE. 7:00-8:30pm. Zoom link here.
SARAH WILSON will lead the Lovingkindness Practice Group, 7:00-8:30pm. Zoom link here.
MARK NUNBERG leads a Half-Day Retreat, 1:00-5:00pm. More info and registration here.
  • WYNN FRICKE will lead the Weekly Practice Group. 10:30-11:45am. Zoom link here.
  • WYNN FRICKE & MARK NUNBERG lead the weekly Community Practice Check-In. 4:30-5:30pm. Zoom link here.

MARK NUNBERG leads the next Buddhist Studies Course on Mindfulness of Mind, 7:30-9:00pm. Register here. There will be in-person spots available for this hybrid Zoom/in-person program.

Save the Date for Labor Day Retreat
This year’s Labor Day retreat will take place Wed. Sep 1st – Mon. Sep 6th. It will be a Zoom retreat with a limited number of spots available at Prairie Farm in person. More info soon.

Please note that all times listed are in Central time. This list of program highlights doesn’t include all our programs; for complete, up-to-date program information, visit the online calendar. We recommend you bookmark it for easy access during the week. You might also want to bookmark our Youtube channel. 

The Practice of Generosity

Continuing in the tradition of Buddhist monasteries in Southeast Asia, all programs at Common Ground, including these online programs, are offered free of charge in the spirit of generosity. This offering is possible because of the generosity of people like you—from the Buddha on down to all the people in our community—who contribute their practice, time, and financial resources to support the continuation of the center.

To learn how to support the center and our teachers, visit this page. Let us know if you have any questions.


Community News

 Community Groups Meeting this Week

  • Be Queer Now Meditation Sangha, Wed. June 9th, 7:30-9:00pm. Zoom link here.
  • Organizers and Social Justice Activists, Thur. June 10th, 6:00-7:30pm. Zoom link here.
  • No Self, No Problem Book Club, Friday June 11th, Zoom link here.

See the calendar for more info about these community groups.

Co-Guiding Teacher Survey
If you missed the email last week requesting feedback for the Co-Guiding Teacher Hiring Committee, you can find it here.

TCVC Retreat with Steve Armstrong & Kamala Masters
Our friends at Twin Cities Vipassana Collective are offering an online retreat with Steve and Kamala June 10th-13th. More info and registration here.

Picnic With Buddhist/Isaiah Social Justice Group
Are you interested in adding social justice work to your Buddhist practice? The multi-sangha ISAIAH affiliated Buddhist group is having an outdoor event Tuesday, June 15 from 6-8 at Newell Park in St Paul (on Pierce Butler Route just west of Snelling). Read more here.

Community Survey
If you haven’t yet, please fill out this survey regarding your interest in in-person and online programming in the coming months.

Looking for Donation of Plastic Lawn Chairs 
We’re looking for any extra lawn chairs you might have, for our garden. Let us know, thanks!

Garden Work Days this Summer
If you’re interested in helping out with Common Ground’s beautiful garden this year (in Minneapolis), please contact Kathleen (Keschuler47@gmail.com) to get on the garden team mailing list.

Buddhist Justice Reporter
Read articles from Tara Mulay, Tuere Sala, Pamela Ayo Yetunde, Shannon Gibney, Zenzele Isoke and others reflecting on the Chauvin trial.

Recent Blog Posts
All blog posts here

Weekly Tejaniya
Why does a wholesome mind arise? Why
does an unwholesome mind arise? What is
a wholesome or unwholesome mind? Why
does a wholesome mind increase; why does
an unwholesome mind grow? Why does a
wholesome mind decrease or fade away;
why does an unwholesome mind fade
away? This is your field of research.

Thanks to The Daily Tejaniya for this quote

Thanks to our Building Committee who erected a tent for outside use this summer!

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