Our Sunday-evening meetings are typically an hour and a half to allow ample time for group sharing, guided meditation, and recovery-focused literature reading and discussion.
We will invite you to check in and share about your week, and/or what brought you to tonight's meeting. Or, you can always just say your name and pass. We ask members to limit the length of their shares to allow for everyone to have a chance to speak, which depending on group size might mean 2 or 3 sentences, or 3 to 5 minutes. We are open, supportive, and here to listen.
We will spend the next 10 - 20 minutes sitting comfortably and quietly for meditation, guided by one of our meeting facilitators, or using a recording from an professional meditation teacher, available through paid and free apps like Insight Timer.
Meditation is a practice in which an individual uses a techniques such as mindfulness, breathing, and focusing the mind on a particular thought, object, or activity, to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state. Meditation is an important part of the Recovery Dharma program (which encourages developing a daily meditation practice).
We will take turns reading from a selected chapter in the Recovery Dharma book, or from recovery-related books and articles written by Buddhist teachers. Afterwards, we'll have an open discussion where meeting participants can share their reactions to the readings, the mediation, or whatever else may have come up for them during the meeting.
We will ask everyone to use "I statements" (no crosstalk) and speak to their own experiences, thoughts, and feelings.
We will pass around a basket for dana (the Buddhist term for generosity). Dana/donations are appreciated but never required.
We will share announcements regarding any special upcoming group, community, or global Recovery Dharma developments and programs.
Hard copies of the Recovery Dharma book are almost always available at our meetings, at a suggested donation of $5 (our cost of purchasing the books). Again, payment is not required and our book supply has been funded through member donations. We want you to have the book!
We close each meeting by reading the dedication of merit:
Refuge does not arise in a particular place, but in the space within the goodness of our hearts. When this space is imbued with wisdom, respect, and love, we call it sangha. We hope that the pain of addiction, trauma, and feeling “apart” actually leads us back toward the heart and that we might understand compassion, wisdom, and change ever more deeply. As we have learned from practice, great pain does not erase goodness, but in fact informs it.
May we make the best use of our practice, and whatever freedom arises from our efforts here today. May this be a cause and condition for less suffering and more safety in our world.
May we be happy
May we be peaceful
May we be free from suffering
May all beings be happy
May all beings be peaceful
May all beings be free from suffering
(Close with a bow)