Courses & Workshops

To register for all courses and workshops, please visit the calendar

Common Ground offers both multiple-week courses and one-time workshops. Topics vary by quarter. All Common Ground programs are offered freely in the spirit of generosity. To learn more about supporting the center and our teachers, click here.


Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation with Mark Nunberg

Six Tuesdays, March 5 – April 9, 7:30-9:00 p.m.

Mindfulness meditation leads to insight into the nature of our hearts and minds, revealing an inherent clarity, openness, and ease. This course includes exploration of the intention behind practice, an introduction to insight (vipassana) meditation techniques, instructions for working with common obstacles, an overview of the practice of lovingkindness, and a discussion on how mindfulness can be part of one’s daily life.

Click here to register

Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation Workshop with Gail Iverson

Saturday, March 30, 9:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.  Register Here


Buddhist Studies Program

The Buddhist Studies Program is designed for people who have attended three or more mindfulness meditation retreats and have a commitment to daily meditation practice. The course includes dharma talks, small and large group discussions, and guided sitting time. Participants will be expected to use the teachings as a focus of their meditation and daily life practice. Led by Mark Nunberg.  Find current class information including handouts and articles here.

Current class: Understanding the Wholesome and Unwholesome Roots in our Heart

Four Mondays, March 25 – April 15, 7:30 – 9:00 p.m.  Register Here


Mindful Self-Compassion with Jean Haley & Jane Rauenhorst

Eight Wednesdays, April 3 – May 22, 1:30 – 4:00 p.m. & Half-day Retreat, Saturday May 11, 1:30 – 5:00 p.m. Register Here WAITLIST ONLY

This eight-week class is designed to help participants cultivate self-compassion skills for daily life. Based on the program developed by Christopher Germer and Kristen Neff, Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) builds on a foundation of mindfulness, kindness, and a sense of our shared humanity to help us meet the difficulties in our lives with compassion.




Noble Eightfold Path Workshop Series with Ramesh Sairam: Right Intention (2nd in the series)

Saturday, March 30th, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Register Here  ** Please note this has been rescheduled from February 16th **

This series of 8 workshops will be an opportunity to study the components of the Noble Eightfold Path in some detail, with a focus on their application in our daily lives. The workshops will be spread through the calendar year 2019, with one held every 6-7 weeks. We will follow the traditional sequence of the teachings, starting with Right view, followed by Right intention, Right speech, Right conduct, Right livelihood, Right effort, Right mindfulness, and Right concentration.

These workshops will be suitable for those who have engaged in Vipassana meditation practice for at least 6 – 12 months and have done some reading of the core teachings, such as the 4 Noble Truths and Noble Eightfold path (detailed study is not a requisite). While it may be helpful to attend all the workshops as part of a comprehensive study of the Eightfold Path, this is not mandatory and practitioners may attend the workshops selectively.

Each workshop will include guided meditation, brief talks on the main topic, Q&A sessions and group discussions.

Ramesh has been part of the Common Ground sangha since 2006 and joined the Board of Directors in 2016. He is a Geriatric psychiatrist and has a deep professional interest in understanding the complex and dynamic interplay between our minds and bodies that often underlie many physical and mental health illnesses. His spiritual practice too is guided by the Buddha’s advice about the deep wisdom inherent in our bodies – “within this very fathom-long body, with its perceptions and inner sense, lies the world, the cause of the world, the cessation of the world and the path that leads to the cessation of the world.” He shares some of his experiences through workshops at Common Ground on mindfulness and chronic pain, and finding wisdom in our bodies.


Workshop With Shannon Gibney and Arleta Little: Writing as a Practice of Freedom

Sunday, March 10th, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Register Here

How can we hone our writing craft, so that the Creative can arise to its fullest potential, and hopefully be a force for positive transformation in our own lives as well as in others’? The great American poet Nikky Finney has written, “My job as a poet, as an artist, is to not look away.” How do we keep on looking at the things that hurt, scare, or confuse us, and translate this to the page? What, if anything, is the writer’s role in building a more just world with less suffering? How might we use writing to create more freedom in the world, and in ourselves?



Registration Policy

Common Ground is committed to giving priority for registration to members of some communities that have experienced historical oppression: people of color, trans, and non-binary. We hope this increases the likelihood of a sense of safety and belonging for members of these communities who often don’t see themselves represented in the community or in teaching roles. We recognize this policy benefits us all as we practice the Buddha’s teachings in an increasingly multicultural community and engage in the ongoing work needed to create a more equitable world. To learn more, contact Gabe Keller-Flores: 612-722-8260 or We welcome feedback on any aspect of this policy.