The Alphabet Sangha is a weekly meditation group for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Same-Gender Loving, and Two-Spirit communities. Because that's such a mouthful, we call ourselves the Alphabet Sangha. We gather for Buddhist meditation practice, Dharma teachings, and friendly, supportive community. Together we explore mindfulness and awareness for cultivating an open heart in our everyday lives.
We are a diverse, multicultural community, committed to social justice and to maintaining a Sangha that's welcoming to people of all races, ethnicities, classes, genders, abilities, sizes and ages.
We welcome people at all levels of practice. Simple beginning meditation instructions are always offered. If you have specific questions about meditation, a teacher is usually available to answer questions.
WHEN: We meet every Tuesday at 7 pm, usually til 8:30.
WHERE: We meet at and are sponsored by the East Bay Meditation Center (EBMC), 285 17th St. (@Harrison) in downtown Oakland. There is usually plenty of street parking, and the center is close to the 19th Street BART station.
COST: EBMC is supported by the generosity of the Dharma communities that make a home there. There is never a fee charged for any event at EBMC. The teachings and space are always offered freely, and you are invited to donate money or offer your support through participation in the community.
ACCESSIBILITY: EBMC is fully wheelchair accessible, with two accessible bathrooms. Chairs and cushions are provided, and you are free to bring whatever else you need to make yourself comfortable. Out of respect for people with environmental illnesses, please do not wear fragrance or scented products.
GROUP FORMAT: Some of our core teachers are based in the Theravadin tradition, and some in the Soto Zen tradition. We also have wonderful visiting teachers from a variety of Buddhist traditions. One or two teachers generally lead(s) the group, and sometimes there are peer-led sits with no teacher, facilitated by members of the Sangha.
The typical evening format:
Please try to arrive a little before 7 so we can begin together.
Newcomers at any level of meditation experience are always welcome!
VOLUNTEERS: Volunteers are an important part of the Sangha. Volunteers coordinate the group, and set up and clean up the space for our weekly meetings. If you'd like to participate, drop us a line!
QUESTIONS? Look around the site. And feel free to email us.