Better understanding our cultural conditioning and our experiences of difference, privilege, and oppression – an imperfect recollection of Common Ground’s history of engaging these important places of practice:
- February 8th, 2020: Rebecca Gilgen and Christy Mulligan lead white People Building Anti-White Supremacy Culture Workshop
- November 23rd, 2019: Mark Nunberg, Shelly Graf, Wynn Fricke, and Gabe Keller Flores offer workshop on The Skillful and Unskillful Use of Identity(ies): How the Buddha’s Teachings on Conceit and Views Support Skillful Engagement and Freedom in our Lives Today
- November 3rd, 2019: Mark Nunberg, Louis Alemayehu, Robb Reed, Omkar Sawardekar, Malik Watkins, and Gabe Keller-Flores offer a Community Conversation on Healthy Masculinity for those who identify as male, as men, or as embodying masculinity
- August 18th, 2019: Rebecca Gilgen and Christy Mulligan lead white People Building Anti-White Supremacy Culture Workshop
- July 28th, 2019: Still in the City Book Reading and Discussion with nakawe cuebas, Angela Dews, Alex Haley, and Ayo Yetunde
- July 20th, 2019 – Living in the Paradox—Self-Compassion for POC and No Self: A Retreat for People of Color led by Pamela Ayo Yetunde and Femi Akinnagbe
- June 8th, 2019 – Six Common Ground leaders (Femi Akinnagbe, Stacy McClendon, Meski Mebatsion, Roseanne Pereira, Cecilia Ramon, and Sarah Wilson) graduate from Common Ground’s first two-year Dharma Leadership Training. They are all people of color and/or from the queer community.
- May 2019 – Following Ruth King’s visit, Shelly Graf and Gabe Keller-Flores host an affinity group start-up event for folks who attended Ruth’s public talk.
- March 24th, 2019 – community conversation for men and masculine-identified folks on emotional intimacy, affection, and vulnerability
- March 3rd, 2019 – Racial Healing and Non-Harming talk with Ruth King and Mark Nunberg
- March 1st, 2019 – Guest Teacher Talk with Ruth King at Hamline University: Transforming Racism from the Inside Out
- February 2019-Common Ground hosts 10-week Antiracism Study and Dialogue Circle
- February 2019- Rebecca Gilgen and Christy Mulligan lead workshop on White People Building Anti-White Supremacy Culture
- February 2019-Femi Akinnagbe, Meski Mebatsion, and Gabe Keller-Flores lead daylong retreat for people of color on Embodied Dharma
- January 2019-Okogyeamon gives public talk on Culture, Race, and the Dharma through Subaltern Eyes
- December 2018-Meski Mebatsion and Stacy McClendon lead half-day retreat for people of color
- September 2018-Terri Karis leads 2-week course entitled Beyond Being a Good White Person: Disrupting Unconscious Racist Identities
- September 2018- Nils Heymann leads daylong retreat for people of color on Nurture and Challenge: A Dynamic Tension
- August 2018- Shelly Graf, Gabe Keller-Flores, and Kaia Svien lead a Daylong workshop for Common Ground leaders on Unraveling Oppression.
- July 2018- Gabe Keller-Flores, Mark Nunberg, Louis Alemayehu, Malik Watkins, and Omkar Sawardekar lead Community Conversation for Those Who Embody Masculinity on the Roots of Sexual Misconduct.
- July 2018- Rev. angel Kyodo williams leads the Sunday morning Weekly Practice Group and gives a talk on “Living Radical Dharma.”
- March 2018-Gabe Keller-Flores, Mark Nunberg, Louis Alemayehu, Malik Watkins, Omkar Sawardekar, and Robb Reed lead Community Conversation for Those Who Embody Masculinity on the Roots of Sexual Misconduct.
- March 2018-Ruth King leads her Mindful of Race Training for 36 of Common Ground’s board members, teachers, and other leaders.
- February 2018-Patrice Koelsch leads class on How the Dharma Helps Us Recognize and Relinquish the White Racial Frame.
- February 2018-Daylong retreat for People of Color with Meski Mebatsion, Gabe Keller-Flores, Femi Akinnagbe, and Stacy McClendon.
- January 2018- Mark Nunberg leads a program for the year anniversary of Donald Trump’s inauguration: Meditation and Inner Reflection for Resilience, Calm and Clarity in Turbulent Times.
- January 2018- Santikaro leads a community conversation on “We’re All in this Mess Together.”
- December 2017- The advisory group on issues of inclusivity is made an official committee of the Board of Directors.
- November 2017- Author David Grant speaks at Common Ground. He is a contributor to the book A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota.
- November 2017- Spring Washam leads a weekend of programs, including an evening for people of color, a daylong workshop for women, and a public talk on the Wisdom of Inclusion.
- October 2017- Common Ground begins planning partnership with North Market Wellness Programs to offer mindfulness classes in North Minneapolis
- September 2017- The CG Befriending Immigrants and Refugees Community Group hosts a training by White Awake called Roots Deeper than Whiteness: Countering White Fragility with Deep Resilience
- September 2017- Common Ground begins implementing new registration policy for retreats that reserves spots for people of color, queer folks, and people living with a disability
- August 2017- Racism and Awakening daylong workshop with Gabe Keller-Flores and Shelly Graf
- July 2017- Regular Spanish meditation group begins, with Gabe Keller-Flores
- July 2017- Patrice Koelsch and Gabe Keller-Flores offer a 3-week mindfulness class to the staff of the Immigrant Law Center of MN
- May 2017- Anushka Fernandopulle visits and teaches on Loving the Stranger, among other teachings
- April 2017- Common Ground’s Dharma Leadership Training begins; all 8 trainees are people of color and/or queer
- March 2017- Befriending Immigrants and Refugees community group begins
- February 2017- Belonging: Daylong Retreat for People of Color with Femi Akinnagbe, Meski Mebatsion, and Gabe Keller-Flores
- February 2017: New book club forms and begins reading The New Jim Crow, goes on to read The Warmth of Other Suns, led by Roseanne Pereira and April Hanson
- January 2017- Meditation Vigil for Inauguration Day
- January 2017 – How the Dharma Helps Us Recognize and Relinquish the White Racial Frame: A Class with Patrice Koelsch
- January 2017 – Community Conversation with Santikaro: Identities & Exclusions, Us Vs. Them
- September 2016 – Presentation by Mindy Zlotnick: I Will Not Pass Away….Reinstating the Buddha’s Vision of Gender Equity
- September 2016- Okogyeamon, co-founder of ASDIC (Antiracism Study and Dialogue Circle) leads workshop entitled Social Justice, Core, and Being
- September 2016- Common Ground’s Sixth Annual Music Festival raises nearly $10,000
- August 2016 – Shelly Graf and Gabe Keller lead 3-week Racism and Awakening class.
- July 2016 – Breathing Through the Whole (Racialized) Body: An Embodied Approach to Exploring Racial Privilege: A Workshop with Terri Karis
- June 2016 – Community Conversation with scottie hall: Buddhism and Polyamory
- April 2016 – We Make the Road by Walking: A Workshop for Artists, Activists, and Community Builders with Louis Alemayehu
- April 2016 – Workshop with Terri Karis: Waking Up to Whiteness: Exploring How to Skillfully and Compassionately Address Race
- March 2016 – Community Conversation: Connecting the 5 Precepts to our Work of Undoing Racism with Shelly Graf and Nora Murphy
- January 2016 – Board approves new Principles and Practices statement: Responding Directly to the suffering in our world with compassion: We are devoted to walking alongside each other with interest and compassion as we wake up to the unequal, and yet interrelated, experiences of privilege and oppression in our relationships, institutions, and communities. We understand that this wise and fearless opening to the real pain and confusion in our world is a difficult and necessary process in addressing the roots of suffering.
- January 2016 – Antiracism Study and Dialogue Circle (ASDIC) 10-week course at Common Ground for 29 staff, teachers, and leaders
- January 2016 – Santikaro leads Community Conversation on Socially Engaged Practice: Towards Dhamma-Centered Living
- November 2015 – scottie hall and Shelly Graf lead Community Conversation on Sexism and Patriarchy
- October 2015 – We Make the Road by Walking: A Workshop for Activists, Artists, and Community Builders led by Louis Alemayehu, Simone Rendon and Beatriz Lusicano
- Summer 2015 – Portion of donations from weekly practice groups for a week is donated to support the black churches that were burned. Some of the money is also given to Neighborhoods Organizing for Change. Femi Akinnagbe and Louis Alemayehu subsequently lead mindfulness training for NOC.
- August 2015 – Gabe Keller gives talk on Race, Sex, and Misery (as three topics not usually covered in Dharma talks)
- August 2015 – Arinna Weisman offered a weekend of programs including an extremely well-attended daylong workshop for white folks and a community conversation for everyone co-facilitated by Meski Mebatsion.
- July 2015 – Community Conversation on Classism led by Nils Heyman
- June 2015 – Board decides to schedule in an ongoing way time to learn and discuss issues concerning race, difference, privilege, and accessibility within our hearts and the world.
- June 2015 – Community Conversation on Microaggressions, Facilitated by Nicole Taras, Meski Mebatsion, Louis Alemayehu, Lance Hegland, and Galen Smith.
- March 2015 – Terri Karis leads a three-week class: Understanding our (Racial) Selves: Racial Moments as Spiritual Practice
- February 2015 – Inclusivity Advisory Group is formed
- Jan. 2015 – Santikaro facilitates community conversation on the interdependence of social and personal transformation
- Nov. 2014 – Nils Heyman speaks for two nights on Waking Up – Learning to See What We Don’t See
- Nov. 2014 – Gabe Keller and Stacy McClendon are elected to CG Board of Directors
- July 2014 – Board has a facilitated conversation led by Jean Choe regarding issues of Inclusivity, Accessibility and Privilege
- June 2014 – David Loy and Santikaro speak on the intersection of Dharma Practice and Social/Political Engagement
- April 2014 – Workshop with Alex Haley, Tommy Lee Woon and Aya Kasai: Touching the Heart of Truth and Reconciliation – A Workshop to Honor Nelson Mandela
- March 2014 – Facilitators of the Inclusivity Circle receive training from Jna Shelomith on how to lead difficult conversations
- December 2013 – Larry Yang gives public talk
- July 2013 – Gabe Keller (CG first Intern) creating a web page of resources for community members who wish to educate themselves around these issues.
- July 2013 – LGBTQ community group Dharma Core begins meeting at CG.
- June 2013 – The Queer Health and Well-Being community group begins
- April 2013 – Larry Yang gave public talk and led Community Conversation on Community
- December 2012 – Unraveling Privilege Community Group begins
- November 2012 – People of Color Community Group begins
- November 2012 – Mark revises Principles and Practices to begin to reflect community values around inclusivity
- December 2011 – First Inclusivity Circle
- Fall 2011 – The ethics of service discussions with CG Teachers and leaders
- Fall 2011 – Conversations with Tom and Jamie about inviting Larry Yang to teach at CG.
- Spring 2011 – Invitation to Gina Sharpe to lead discussion around issues of inclusivity
- 2010? – Gay Men’s Community Group begins
- March 2009 – Regular program begins for children, pre teens and teens. The center becomes more accessible to families with children and people with different physical abilities.
- 2007-2008 – CG absorbed in renovating new building
- Fall 2006 – Conversations about how purchasing the Templar building would support a more inclusive community.
- 2005? – Rita Gross begins offering her class on Buddhism and Gender
- 2005/06 – First Inclusivity Circle Discussion
- 2004 or 2005 – Patrice Koelsch and Wendy Morris invited to initiate a community discussion