Weekly Email 8-9-22

Dear Common Ground Friends,

It’s good to be back at Common Ground after taking some time for personal retreat in July and also doing some traveling before and after to teach retreats. I found the Buddha’s teachings on wise effort to be especially useful in transitions from one set of conditions to another. Discerning wise effort can be difficult and confusing but thankfully it is possible for us to learn to apply ourselves in skillful ways and in alignment with our deepest values. As human beings, our efforts are often misguided, looking for immediate results or seeking resolution. Instead we learn the art of wholehearted participation without appropriation. We learn to linger in and appreciate the heart’s goodness. We learn the art of gentle and steady perseverance right beside the heart’s capacity for letting go. The Buddha’s teachings on wise effort are an essential support and invite us to lean into the places of tension and confusion in our hearts, with love and patience as we learn and grow. I’ll be sharing a little more on this topic at Common Ground’s weekly practice group this Wednesday night, 7:30-9pm CT. As always, all are welcome.

Shelly Graf
Co-Guiding Teacher

Community Potluck – Save the Date!
Sunday, September 11th from 12:00pm – 2:00pm
More information coming next week

Weekly Programs
To view our entire list of programs and to access Zoom links to participate in online programs, please visit the online calendar

Weekly Practice Groups

  • Sunday mornings, 10:30-11:45am in-person and on Zoom with Mark Nunberg
  • Sunday evenings, 7:00-8:30pm in-person with Mark Nunberg
  • Wednesday evenings, 7:30-9:00pm on Zoom with Shelly Graf
    • Wednesday, August 24th with Stacy McClendon
Monthly Practice Groups
  • Fourth Fridays, 7:00-8:30pm on Zoom, Lovingkindness with Stacy McClendon
  • First Fridays, 7-8:30pm on Zoom, Lovingkindness with Mark Nunberg

Community Practice Check-Ins

  • Sundays, 4:30-5:30pm with Mark Nunberg and Wynn Fricke, on Zoom
  • Tuesdays, 12:00-1:00pm with Stacy McClendon (Mark Nunberg joining on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month), on Zoom
  • Fridays, 9:00-10:00am with Shelly Graf, on Zoom
  • Every other Saturday, 10:30am-12:00pm with Ramesh Sairam, on Zoom
  • Every first Tuesday of the month, 8:00-9:00am, with Mark Nunberg, in-person
Open Meditation
Join fellow community members for meditation practice in person or online, 7 days a week. Visit the calendar for times and details.

Yoga & Qigong
We offer Yoga and Qigong several times a week, both in person and online. Click here for times and details.

Mindfulness, Recovery, and the Twelve Steps
Meets every Friday, 7:00-8:30pm.
In-person and on Zoom
Visit the calendar for Zoom link

   – Kevin Griffin joining via Zoom on August 19th 

Upcoming Programs: Online Only

To see full list of programs and access Zoom links for online programs visit our calendar.

MBSR-Based Mindfulness Practice with Nancy Boros
Mondays, 12:00 -1:00pm

InterPlay with Spruce Krause
Thursday, August 11th | 7:00 -8:30pm

Mindful Self-Compassion Practice Group with Jean Haley and Jane Rauenhorst
Friday, August 26th | 7:00 -8:30pm

Upcoming Programs: In Person/Hybrid at Common Ground
To see full list of programs visit our calendar

Practice Group for the BIPOC Community with Femi Akinnagbe
Friday, August 12th | 6:30pm – 8:00pm
In-person only
No registration required
More info here

Living the Practice Workshop: Understanding Healing and Awakening
with Femi Akinnagbe, Shelly Graf, & Mark Nunberg

Saturday, Aug 13th, 2022 | 9:30am – 4:00pm
In-person and on Zoom
Info and registration here

Daylong Retreat with Mark Nunberg
Saturday, August 20th | 9:30am – 4:00pm
In-person and on Zoom
Info and registration here.

Young Adult Daylong Retreat
with Meg Brandeland and Gabe Keller Flores

Saturday, August 27th | 9:30am – 4:00pm
In-person and on Zoom
Info and registration here

Daylong Retreat with Shelly Graf
Saturday, September 17th | 9:30am – 4:00pm
In-person and on Zoom
Info and registration here.

Daylong Retreat with Kevin Griffin: 
Wrestling with the Buddha: Reflections on the Anapanasati Sutta

Saturday, September 24th | 10:00am – 5:00pm
Info and registration here

Half-Day Retreat with Kevin Griffin:
Dharma & Recovery

Sunday, September 25th | 1:00pm – 5:00pm
For Recovery Community Only
Info and registration here

Upcoming In-Person/Hybrid Programs at our retreat center
Common Ground Retreat Center is located in Wisconsin, about an hour-and-fifteen-minute drive from Minneapolis. More information and registration for the following programs can be found here


Labor Day Retreat with Mark Nunberg & Shelly Graf
*Short waitlist for in-person spots at the retreat center*
6:15pm Sunday, August 28th – 10:30am Monday, September 5th

Tranquility & Insight with Nils Heymann
Assisted by Gabe Keller Flores
5:30pm Thursday, September 22nd – 10:30am Saturday, September 24th

Practice Periods:

Practice Period with Louise Delagran & Jen Stewart
5:00pm Thursday, September 29th – 2:00pm Sunday, October 2nd.

Practice Period for BIPOC Practitioners with Jen Racho & Arleta Little
5:00pm Thursday, October 13th – 2:00pm Sunday, October 16th

For more upcoming Practice Periods, click here.
In addition to these weekend retreats, we also offer public drop-in groups on select Wednesdays at the retreat center, 6:30-7:45pm.

  • First Wednesday of the month: Community Group led by Matthew King and other practice leaders
  • Third Wednesday of the month: Monthly Practice Group with Mark Nunberg and guest teachers
More info about these Wednesday night programs here.

The Practice of Generosity

Continuing in the tradition of Buddhist monasteries in Southeast Asia, all programs at Common Ground 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.

Current Volunteer Needs 
Please contact Robin Major at robin@commongroundmeditation.org if you are interested in any of these volunteer opportunities:

  • Trailer need: We’re in need of a means to haul a 20ft. steel beam to Common Ground Retreat Center the week of July 11th. It’s only about 250 lbs but quite long. Let us know if you have a long enough trailer we could borrow (16ft. is ideal but maybe 12ft. would work).
  • Wishlist items: Please let us know if you would like to donate any of these items: high quality area wool rugs for the Retreat Center, one bookshelf

Community News 

Give-Away Books, DVD’s, and CD’s
We will be clearing out the give-away section of the library on September 10th. If you would like to peruse and take home any books, CD’s or DVD’s please come within the next month. The give-away section is in the basement of the city center, on the south side of the library

Upcoming Community Group Meetings:

  • Be Queer Now, weekly on Wednesday, 7:30-9:00pm
  • Community Group for Organizers & Social Justice Activists, Thursday August 11th, 6:00-7:30pm
  • Buddhism & Other Religions Book Group, Saturday, August 13th, 9:00 – 10:15am
  • Refirement Community Group for Retirees, Thursday August 18th, 12:00-2:00pm
  • Black, Indigenous, People of Color Community Group, Thursday August 18th, 6:30-8:00pm
  • Mindfulness & Depression, Sunday, August 21st, 4:00-5:30pm
  • Millenials Sangha, Friday, August 26th, 7:00-8:30pm

View public calendar for Zoom links and more information.
To see the complete list of community groups, click here.

Teen Practice Group
For more info, click here.

Weekly Tejaniya

How do you define meditation?

It’s cultivating good qualities in the
mind. It’s making conditions right
so good qualities can arise.

 Thanks to The Daily Tejaniya for this quote

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