“EBMC was right there waiting for me to arrive.” – Danielle Duong Gratitude Story

We’re delighted to continue our 2020 Season of Gratitude with a story from Sangha member Danielle Duong! Danielle is part of the People of Color Sangha and a graduate of Practice in Transformative Action. Danielle shares an honest and vulnerable story about the impact of EBMC’s Practice in Transformative Action (PiTA) program.
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Thanks to generous Sangha members,

Two years ago, I found myself at the very bottom of my well of suffering. It was cold, dry, and dark. While my spirit felt depressed and dull at the time, something deep inside told me that I needed to find a different way. I was drowning myself in work to maintain the numbness of my pain from the emotional neglect in my marriage. Years of feeling abandoned by loved ones including myself had accumulated trauma deep in my body. I didn’t have the courage to see my reality as it was.


Something profoundly sacred called me to EBMC’s Practice in Transformative Action (PiTA) program. Our PiTA6 community created an environment where I could breathe deeply for the first time. I realized what I needed was a sense of safety, belonging, and connection. PiTA gave me a peaceful refuge where I could come and experience my whole self without judgment. The program helped me ground into the depth of my own being, where I began learning how to lean into my breath. By the end of the year, through the cultivation of spaciousness, silence, and stillness in my life, I put on glasses for the first time and could finally see my reality as it was. I started to feel into the inner knowing of my soul and listen to what she needed to walk the path of freedom. As I started to shed myself of old patterns and conditionings that no longer served this path, life started to shift in unexpected ways. I left my marriage and shortly after, I quit my full time job.


Being in PiTA cleared the way for a new becoming. The experience sparked a small fire that started to fan itself throughout my body. At this juncture, Mushim invited me into the Path of the Bodhisattva series where I stoked this fire by eagerly opening a number of doors to the Buddhadharma. While my parents raised me in a Buddhist tradition, I didn’t return home to the Three Jewels until I met my own suffering. EBMC was right there waiting for me to arrive. Mushim gave me one of the most precious gifts I’d ever received: my dharma name, Insight Arising Heartmind. This name, and more importantly, the vows and precepts that I committed to, have become my call-to-action, my north star, and my heart’s purpose in this lifetime. I feel an ocean of gratitude to EBMC, POC Sangha, and our beautiful spiritual teachers and resilient sangha. Your gift of healing through compassion and wisdom are abundantly generous and never ending.


With tenderness,
Danielle Duong