Weekly Email 9-15-21

Dear Common Ground Community,

After careful consideration, Common Ground has decided that in addition to requiring that all participants wear masks at both the city center and at Common Ground Retreat Center in Prairie Farm, WI, we are also now requiring that all participants be fully vaccinated before attending programs at either location. The CDC recommends vaccination as the best way of protecting ourselves and others in our wider communities from Covid-19. The CDC also recommends  mask-wearing, even for vaccinated people, in counties that have high virus transmission rates. At this time, this includes Hennepin County and all of the metro counties near Minneapolis and St. Paul.

As leaders, our intention is to take responsibility for this beloved community in the best way we can. Our decision to require vaccination aligns with the Buddha’s (and our) commitment to non harming and an understanding of interdependence. Our decisions will not please everyone. We understand this. Our ever evolving Covid-19 policies however are our real time efforts to live a life of non harming given the conditions as they are which includes current infection and vaccine rates as well as your feedback. We offer these guidelines as an imperfect response to a challenging situation with humility and an ever deepening commitment to our collective well being. As we have been over the course of the pandemic, we will continue to revisit our policies as conditions change.

Peace,

Mark and Shelly


Upcoming Programs: In Person at Common Ground

Silent Open Meditation In Person
Monday-Saturday, 7:30-8:30am,
Sundays 8:30-9:30am, &
Tuesdays from 7:30-9:00pm
more info here
Please note the Wednesday mid-day in-person sit has been cancelled

Saturday, September 18th
  • In-Person/Zoom Half-Day Retreat with Mark Nunberg, 1:00-5:00pm. Register here.

Sunday, September 19th

  • Livestream of Weekly Practice Group with Mark Nunberg, 10:30-11:45am. The meditation hall is open on Sunday mornings for community members to gather to watch the Weekly Practice Group livestream together on a screen. There will be a program host there to facilitate conversation for those who wish to stay afterwards. Mark will be teaching online from the office.
  • In Person Weekly Practice Group with Mark Nunberg, 7:00-8:30pm.
8 Mondays, September 13 – Nov 1
  • In-Person/Zoom: Buddhist Studies Course: Fourth Foundation of Mindfulness: Mindfulness of Dhammas with Mark Nunberg, 7:30-9:00pm. Register here.
Tuesday, September 14th
  • In Person: Community Tea and Dharma with Mark Nunberg, 8:00-9:00am. (every Tuesday)
6 Tuesdays, September 14th – October 19th
  • In-Person/Zoom: Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation Course with Mark Nunberg. 7:30-9:00pm. More info and registration here.
Thursday, October 14th
  • Fall Building Cleaning and Maintenance Day, 9:00am-1:00pm. RSVP here.

Upcoming Programs: In Person at Common Ground Retreat at Prairie Farm

Common Ground Retreat at Prairie Farm is our retreat property in Wisconsin, about an hour-and-fifteen-minute drive from Minneapolis. Registration is now open for the following programs there:

  • Daylong Workshop for Those Who Identify as Male, Men, or as Embodying Masculinity: The Masks We Wear
    Facilitated by Mark Nunberg, Louis Alemayehu, Omkar Sawardekar, and Gabe Keller Flores. Saturday, September 18th, 9:30am-5:00pm
  • Practice Period with Julie Meyer and Tony Fernandez
    Thursday evening, September 23 – Sunday mid-day, September 26
  • Work Retreat: Planting
    Monday, Sep 27th-Thursday, Sep 30th
  • Practice Period with Mary Clark and Phillip Cryan, assisted by Zenzele Isoke
    Thursday, Sep 30th-Sunday Oct 3rd
  • End-Of-October Zoom/In-Person Retreat with Mark Nunberg and Shelly Graf
    Thursday, October 28th – Sunday, October 31st
More info and registration for these programs can be found here. Please note that we are currently requiring vaccination and masking for programs at the retreat property.

We now have a new photo gallery of the retreat property available to view here. Thanks to Ari Lindquist for these beautiful photos!

Upcoming Programs: Online

Wednesday, September 15th

  • Shelly Graf will lead the Weekly Practice Group, a cornerstone for one’s practice by providing ongoing instruction and teachings that will help illuminate the simple but challenging practice of mindfulness, 7:30-9:00pm on Zoom.

Thursday, September 16th

  • Jean Haley will lead today’s Community Practice Check-In. Please join in for a short grounding exercise before we begin a community conversation/ Q&A about our practice, 9:00am-10:00am, on Zoom.
Friday, September 17th
  • Jean Haley and Jane Rauenhorst will lead the Mindful Self-Compassion Practice Group, the group is open to those who have graduated from the Mindful Self Compassion class and to everyone interested in exploring the benefits of a self compassion practice. 7:00-8:30pm on Zoom.
Sunday, September 19th
  • Mark Nunberg will lead the Weekly Practice Group, a cornerstone for one’s practice by providing ongoing instruction and teachings that will help illuminate the simple but challenging practice of mindfulness, 10:30-11:45am on Zoom and Youtube.
  • Wynn Fricke & Mark Nunberg will lead the weekly Community Practice Check-In, 4:30-5:30pm on Zoom.
8 Mondays, September 13 – Nov 1
  • In-Person/Zoom: Buddhist Studies Course: Fourth Foundation of Mindfulness: Mindfulness of Dhammas with Mark Nunberg, 7:30-9:00pm. Register here.
6 Tuesdays, September 14th – October 19th
  • In-Person/Zoom: Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation Course with Mark Nunberg. 7:30-9:00pm. More info and registration here.
Saturday, September 25th
  • Daylong Retreat with Shelly Graf on Zoom, 9:30am-4:00pm. More info and registration here.
Saturday, October 9th
  • Daylong Retreat with Mark Nunberg and Cecilia Ramon: Cultivating a Wise and Kind Resilience, 9:30am-4:00pm. More info and registration here.
These are program highlights. To see a complete list of all our programs and access Zoom links to participate, please visit the online calendar. Also, please note all times listed are in central time.

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

  • Biweekly Sunday Evening Cleaning: Every other Sunday evening there is drop-in Community Cleaning time from 6-7pm, led by community leader Dave Redelman. Upcoming dates: Sept 19th, Oct 3rd
  • Looking for Teen Practice Group teachers: we are looking for a couple of teachers to join our Teen Practice Group teaching team this fall. Ideally teachers would have residential retreat experience, have been coming to the center for at least a year, and have experience working with youth. Please email shelly@commongroundmeditation.org if interested. A modest stipend is provided.
  • Cooking for Practice Periods at Prairie Farm: There is a tradition in Buddhism of supporting people doing intensive retreat practice. We are always looking for volunteers interested in cooking and freezing meals ahead of time for retreatants at Prairie Farm. You can see a list of recipes here. Common Ground has pots and tupperware you can borrow for cooking and freezing. Contact retreatproperty@commongroundmeditation.org if you wish to offer a meal. Or to donate in support of groceries for the retreatants, you can designate a gift for “Prairie Farm” here.

 


Community News

   Community Groups Happening This Week

  • Be Queer Now Meditation Sangha, Wed. Sept 15th. On Zoom, 7:30-9:00pm.
  • Refirement Group, Thurs. Sept 16th. On Zoom, 12:00-2:00pm.
  • BIPOC Community Group, Thurs. Sept 16th. In Person, 6:30-8:00pm.
  • Common Ground Book Club, Sun. Sept 19th. On Zoom, 8:45-10:15am.
  • Mindfulness & Depression Community Group, Sun. Sept 19th. On Zoom, 4:00-5:30pm.

Metta Meditation Center is Hiring
Our friends at Metta Meditation Center in Janesville are hiring a Marketing Manager and a Caretaker. Metta Meditation Center is the location where we’ve done our residential retreats over the years, previously known as Holy Spirit Retreat Center. For more info on the positions click the hyperlinks above.

Arrow River Forest Hermitage in Thunder Bay Looking for Steward
Some of you will be familiar with Arrow River Forest Hermitage, where one of CG’s longtime visiting teachers, Ajahn Punnadhammo is the resident Buddhist monk. The hermitage will be needing someone to act as steward for the fall and/or winter months. The best time to start would be early September. The steward is a volunteer position and is responsible for cooking the one meal a day, managing the kitchen and doing the shopping. It is strongly preferred if you have a driver’s license. For more information check out the Visitor’s Pageson their website. Please send all inquiries to arfh@xplornet.com and CC to akyle@lakeheadu.ca.

Weekly Tejaniya
Once you know how to relax,
you become sensitive to your own
needs. You will then know when you
are using energy unnecessarily, and
also learn to conserve your energy.


New flowers at CG!

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