Sangha Night

Sangha nights are now mostly in-person, with a zoom option.  Please read requirements carefully - they will be updated regularly.

Our Wednesday Sangha Nights are dedicated to supporting anyone wishing to experience and share the benefits of Buddhist practice. We are committed to strengthening the connection between personal practice and positive action in the world around us, and providing a welcoming and safe place for all those who want to participate. You are welcome here.

Our theme for 2023 is "Pathways to Awakening". 

Caminante, no hay camino, se hace camino al andar. Pathmaker, there is no path, the path is made by walking. (Antonio Machado)

There are as many paths to awakening as there are beings - it's up to us to start walking and let each step reveal itself, until, as some would say, we discover we were already where we wanted to be. Luckily the Buddha gave countless clear instructions to guide us. This year we'll look at some of them together. 

Most evenings are informal and interactive. Introductions are followed by meditation and after the tea break there's usually a talk, workshop or discussion. No particular experience is required, though if you have not meditated before we recommend first attending one of our introductory classes.  Suggested donation: $10–$5, or whatever you can afford. If you'd like a brief orientation please arrive before 7pm. 

Sangha Night Classes

What's Love got to do with it?
Wed, Aug 31, 2022

What's Love got to do with it?

Wednesdays in July and August, 7pm to 8:30 on zoom and in person

Pre-registration required

What does love have to do with the 4 noble truths, the 5 hindrances, the 5 or 10 precepts, the 10 fetters, the 6 or 10 perfections, the 8 Worldly Winds .... and other important teachings?  

The answer, of course, is everything, although we're talking here about unconditional love, or Metta/loving-kindness, and not the second hand emotion Tina Turner refers to. We're always in relationship, and the teachings would be meaningless if they didn't address how to relate from love, from the heart, and not simply from our own delusional search for security. 

In July and August we will continue our Deepening Practice theme by exploring key Buddhist Teachings and what they say or imply about love and relationship, with the four Brahma Viharas (Metta/Loving Kindness, Karuna/Compassion, Mudita/Sympathetic Joy, Uppeka/Equanimity) as a framework.  With short talks, discussion, and lots of meditation, together we'll see if we can create a container kind enough to allow a deeper wisdom. 

Resources, Suggestions and Challenge - on this page you'll find further reading, quote sources, suggestions and our Summer challenge. Updated each week.

Wednesdays in July and August, 7pm to 8:30pm. 

July 6: PadmataraDefining Love

July 13: Padmatara: Love and the 5 "hindrances

July 20 and 27: Danadasa

August 3: Mokshasi Love, Impermanence and Surrender

August 10: Viradhamma Infinite Love

August 17: Karunadevi Equanimity and the Broad Band of Awareness — All about love

August 24: Prasadachitta

August 31: Love puja with Brad

Registration - please register below so that we have your information in case of changes to the Sangha Night program or zoom link. You only need to do this once.  

Donations: Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page

If you would like to attend in person please check you can agree to our current safety requirements listed here. We will ask you to confirm when you arrive. 

We will still offer the zoom option each week. 

TO REGISTER

Enter the amount you wish to donate in the Event Donation box and click add to cart. Donations of any amount are very much appreciated but always optional - please feel free to enter 0 in the box, but if you do this please make sure to click 'pay later' on the payment page (otherwise the registration won't work). Drop us an email if you have any difficulty.

Please add info@sfbuddhistcenter.org to your address book so we can keep you up-to-date with any changes.*  

Recollecting the Buddha
Wed, Sep 28, 2022

Recollecting the Buddha

Wednesdays in September, 7pm to 8:30pm.  Please register below if this will be your first time at Sangha Night.

Our theme for 2022 is Deepening Practice. In September Paramabodhi is visiting from the UK, and will lead us in some recollections of the Buddha. 

Sep 7: Celebrating our change of chair, hosted by Viveka - see separate page for more information

Sep 14 to 21: Recollecting the Buddha, with Paramabodhi

Sep 14: Going Forth and quest for Enlightenment

Sep 21: Enlightenment and Turning the Wheel of Dharma

Sep 28: Teaching Years and Parinirvana 

Registration - please register below so that we have your information in case of changes to the Sangha Night program or zoom link. You only need to do this once.  

Donations: Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page

If you would like to attend in person please check you can agree to our current safety requirements listed here. We will ask you to confirm when you arrive. 

We will still offer the zoom option each week. 

TO REGISTER

Enter the amount you wish to donate in the Event Donation box and click add to cart. Donations of any amount are very much appreciated but always optional - please feel free to enter 0 in the box, but if you do this please make sure to click 'pay later' on the payment page (otherwise the registration won't work). Drop us an email if you have any difficulty.

Please add info@sfbuddhistcenter.org to your address book so we can keep you up-to-date with any changes.*  

Impermanence and Death
Wed, Oct 26, 2022
Wednesdays in October - 7pm to 9pm
Earlier this year we explored the four reminders, important Dharma teachings that remind us of the liberating potential of acknowledging impermanence, the preciousness of life, and the inevitability of death. This month we will go deeper into these important subjects, as Helen and Dayamudra lead us in an exploration that is both practical and dharmic. Please register below.
 
Please note: We will explicitly talk about and visualize death this month. It is likely to be an emotional time. Please be sure you’re up for it. Tissues will be provided. Bring a journal and pen for notes and reflection.
 

Oct 5: Dying Without Regret 

In the Words of Lou Reed,  “We’re gonna have a real good time together!"
To begin our month-long reflection on impermanence, we engage in a practice of embodied meditation and personal reflection on dying with grace. How can we embrace the wonder of each moment, preparing for a death with no regrets? What did the Buddha teach us?
 

Oct 12: Buddhist-inspired Practical Solutions to Living & Dying

An evening to engage with the practicalities of our impermanence: creating a network of support, updating an emergency contact list, and designing files to make life's transitions smoother. Practical solutions will be offered, along with guided periods of individual reflection and opportunities to meditate walking, sitting, and lying down, inspired by the Buddha.
 

Oct 19: Making our Dying Wishes Come True - For ourselves, our families & loved ones

Tonight Dayamudra and Helen explore death from both a Buddhist perspective and a family perspective. Special guest Vimalamoksha will also share the outcome of his two recent near-death experiences.
 

Oct 26: Fungi and the Bardo

With special guest Amy Rathbone
Fungi have long been considered the bridge between light and dark, half-alive and existing between animate and inanimate states. Tonight we take a look at the similarities of fungi in the transitioning state between life and death and how this relates to impermanence from both scientific and Buddhist perspectives. We also explore green/ eco burial alternatives.
 

Bonus Workshop: Saturday November 5, 1pm to 5pm

Let’s have a real good time filling out our Living Will / Advanced Care Directives together!
All materials provided —see link! 5 wishes workshop
 
Registration - please register below to receive the zoom link. You only need to do this once. If you plan to attend in person please check you can agree to our current safety requirements listed here
 
Donations: Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page
 
 
TO REGISTER 
Enter the amount you wish to donate in the Event Donation box and click add to cart. Donations of any amount are very much appreciated but always optional - please feel free to enter 0 in the box, but if you do this please make sure to click 'pay later' on the payment page (otherwise the registration won't work). Drop us an email if you have any difficulty.
Please add info@sfbuddhistcenter.org to your address book so we can keep you up-to-date with any changes. 
Deepening Practice through Ritual, in Buddhism and in Life (and Death)
Wed, Dec 21, 2022

 

Deepening Practice through Ritual and Honoring our Ancestors

Wednesdays in November and December, 7pm to 9pm. 

In November and December we have been looking at the meaning and role of Ritual and Honoring our Ancestors and Lineage, reflecting on the influence and inspiration of the generosity and wisdom of other beings, in our cultures, sanghas and buddhist traditions.

We began with a celebration of Day of the Dead, and continue with an exploration of buddhist ritual, spiritual rebirth, and the transcendental.

November wss Native American Heritage Month, and our November sangha night benefit raised $750 for Friendship House, an Indigenous led organization in the Mission.   

Read more here.

Nov 2: Celebrating Day of the Dead, Día de Muertos, with Mokshasi.

Nov 9: Sangha Day - celebrating the inspiration and aspirations of Sangha, lineage, and ancestors.  With various Sangha Members. 

Nov 16: Honoring our Ancestors, with Prasadachitta

Nov 23: no class

Nov 30: Spiritual rebirth, with Prasadachitta. The freedom that follows deeper understanding.

Dec 7: Samayashri - our new President, will lead this evening on a topic of her choice.

Dec 14: Prasadachitta will explore the importance of ritual in our tradition, perhaps with a puja. 

Dec 14: Winter Solstice with Danadasa

Dec 28: no class. See Winter Retreat  (now full with a waiting list.)

Registration

We do not currently require registration for our Sangha Night Classes, but please make sure you can agree to our safety requirements listed here if you plan to attend in person.  

For online attendance please join through the link below a few minutes before 7pm.

Zoom link:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84923542148?pwd=a0lxZTlTQmNuT05uZkZrTXJlU3lIQT09

Meeting ID: 849 2354 2148. Passcode: Sangha

Donations: Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page

The Buddha's Noble Eight Fold Path
Wed, Mar 29, 2023

Theme for 2023: Pathways to Awakening 

Wednesday Sangha Nights in 2023, 7pm to 9pm. 

The Buddha's Noble 8 fold Path

In February and March we will take a deep look at the Buddha's Noble 8 fold Path, one of the most widely known formulations of the spiritual path found within Buddhism.

Donations

All donations received for Sangha Nights in February will go to Oakland based Returning Citizens Association.  More information here.  How to donate.    

February 1 - Introduction to the Buddha's Noble Eightfold Path led by Danadasa

February 8 - Perfect Vision led by Danadasa

February 15 - Perfect Emotion led by Claudia

February 22 - Perfect Speech led by Acarasiddhi

March 1 - Perfect Action led by Acarasiddhi & Nanasiri

March 8 - Perfect Livelihood led by Medhahshri

March 15 - Perfect Effort led by Viradhamma

March 22 - The Promise of a Sacred World - Special Guest Nagapriya from Cuernavaca, Mexico, will talk about the topic of his new book

March 29 - Perfect Awareness and Perfect Samadhi led by Karunadevi

Registration

We do not currently require registration for our Sangha Night Classes, but please make sure you can agree to our safety requirements listed here if you plan to attend in person.  

For online attendance please join through the link below a few minutes before 7pm.

Zoom link:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84923542148?pwd=a0lxZTlTQmNuT05uZkZrTXJlU3lIQT09

Meeting ID: 849 2354 2148. Passcode: Sangha

Donations:

Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page

Pathways to Awakening
Wed, Jan 25, 2023

PATHWAYS TO AWAKENING

Wednesdays in 2023, 7pm to 9pm. 

Caminante, no hay camino, se hace camino al andar. Pathmaker, there is no path, the path is made by walking. (Antonio Machado)

There are as many paths to awakening as there are beings - it's up to us to start walking and let each step reveal itself, until, as some would say, we discover we were already where we wanted to be. Luckily the Buddha gave countless clear instructions to guide us. This year we'll look at some of them together. 

In January we'll begin our exploration with a series on the Anapanasati Sutta, the Buddha's meditation instructions, directing us to discover the nature of reality through gentle attention to our experience. 

Jan 4: Mokshasi will introduce the Sutta

Jan 11: Shunyamala will share her reflections on the second set of verses - feeling/vedana.  There will also be a Mitra Ceremony for Molly and Dylan - marking their personal commitment to practice. 

Jan 18: Prasadachitta will continue with the Heart-Mind/Citta set of verses.

Jan 25: Mokshasi will lead the last night of the series on Wisdom

Here is a link to a series of talks on this Sutta given by Viveka in 2003, still well worth a listen. And here is the Sutta from that same retreat.

Registration

We do not currently require registration for our Sangha Night Classes, but please make sure you can agree to our safety requirements listed here if you plan to attend in person.  

For online attendance please join through the link below a few minutes before 7pm.

Zoom link:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84923542148?pwd=a0lxZTlTQmNuT05uZkZrTXJlU3lIQT09

Meeting ID: 849 2354 2148. Passcode: Sangha

Donations: Please consider making a donation or joining our Dana program to help support our teaching. More information on this page