East Bay Meditation Center Newsletter
In This Issue
Deep Refuge in Spiritual Friendship
Beyond Meditation
EBMC People Portraits
Behind the Scenes

Featured Event
Save the Date!
January 15, 2015


For the first time ever: Angela Davis and 
Jon Kabat-Zinn  
in conversation! 

A benefit for EBMC


Please join us for an evening of challenging, thoughtful, and engaging dialogue between two visionary public intellectuals about mindfulness, justice and freedom.


January 15, 2015


Scottish Rite Center

1547 Lakeside Drive, Oakland


Angela Davis
is an activist scholar and writer. Her work as an educator - both at the university level and in the larger public sphere - has always emphasized the importance of building communities of struggle for economic, racial, and gender equality. She is Distinguished Professor Emerita of History of Consciousness and Feminist Studies at UC Santa Cruz, and the author of nine books including Are Prisons Obsolete, Abolition Democracy, and most recently, The Meaning of Freedom.


Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn
is Professor of Medicine Emeritus and founder of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), and of the Stress Reduction Clinic, and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. His books include
Full Catastrophe Living; Wherever You Go, There You Are; Coming to Our Senses; Mindfulness for Beginners; and with co-editor Mark Williams, Mindfulness: Diverse Perspectives on Its Meaning, Origins, and Applications.

Tickets are on sale at 
www. mindfulfreedom. eventbrite.com





We need folks to help serve on the Host Committee for this event.

Please join us at the  
first meeting of the
Host Committee on  
Monday, Nov 17 from
at EBMC.
If you would like to participate, please contact

Quick Links

Deep Refuge in Spiritual Friendship

a network of EBMC Practice Communities

by Max Airborne

"To have spiritual associates, spiritual companions, spiritual friendships, is the whole of the Holy life."  ~Buddha


"It is possible that the next Buddha will not take the form of an individual. The next Buddha may take the form of a community -- a community practicing understanding and loving kindness, a community practicing mindful living. This may be the most important thing we can do for the survival of the Earth." ~Thich Nhat Hanh  


EBMC's Deep Refuge groups are thriving! The Deep Refuge Program was created to support the many individuals and diverse communities of the East Bay Meditation Center to deepen their spiritual path in their lived experiences. Deep Refuge communities are intended to provide a safe, intimate, and community-led space in which folks can explore what relevance wisdom teachings from different lineages and traditions have in their lives.


Deep Refuge groups can have many different themes or organizing principles, such as a particular area of study, a common interest, a shared identity, or a shared neighborhood.


EBMC's Eco Initative and
Mindfulness of What We Throw Away

by Mushim, EBMC community coordinator


The event generated 14 full bags of compost, 4 full bins of recycling, and *0* bags/bins of trash. Really, hardly anything goes to landfill anymore. I experimented with bin positioning during the course of the evening, too.

-Manish Desai, environmental health scientist at UC Berkeley, and EBMC Eco-Team volunteer, reporting on the Buddha Bingo dinner, EBMC fundraiser, Dec. 2013


Environmental sustainability, "going green," is an essential part of East Bay Meditation Center's mission. At the Center, we try to model and embody a non-toxic and "small carbon footprint" way of being in community on the Earth. We try to be conservative yet sensible with use of heating and air conditioning, and urge folks to use the well-labeled bins for recycling, composting and landfill trash that are set up in the kitchen area. We use rechargeable batteries in the microphones and rechargeable battery candles on the altar.

There's much more to EBMC's eco-mindfulness... find out! 


[Note: We want to replace our old refrigerator with an
Energy Star-rated big refrigerator. If you have one you'd 
like to donate, please contact us. Thank you.]



EBMC People Portraits
From Minneapolis to Oakland:  
            Heart Opened to Compassion

                              by Eli J. Grobel


My name is Eli J. Grobel, and I recently visited the beautiful Sangha that is EBMC. I have been searching for a community in which I can grow, learn and be an agent for social change that practices the Dharma. In speaking with my mentor in Minneapolis, she recommended I visit EBMC. I flew across the country to Oakland to connect with Sangha, and through the compassion of others, I definitely achieved this goal.


I stayed in Oakland from September 11-17, 2014. I was received by Center director Brenda Salgado, a warm being who welcomed me with open arms. While I was in Oakland I attended multiple programs and volunteered at EBMC as a Temple Keeper with Doe Restrepo Macias, a kind and gentle soul. I also helped paint Room 2 with Kazu Haga, a heart-and-mind warrior for social justice...  read on and get to know Eli; he hopes to return! 


Thanks to volunteers Eli and Kazu, EBMC's Compassion Room got a fresh coat of paint in September. At EBMC, volunteers are doing hundreds of tasks, from weekly cleaning by our Temple Keeping team to fundraising to coordinating regular meditation groups and to designing a new website! All volunteer positions are leadership development positions; training and ongoing support is provided by staff. Join us! For more information, see


Behind the Scenes

Embracing Transition:
      The Alphabet Sangha Coordinators

by Deb Schneider, Alphabet Co-Coordinator


Sangha is all about walking a spiritual path in community. It's a condensed example of the concept of interconnectedness so important in Buddhism. We are all the same in so many ways, and we all need each other to evolve as human beings. Alphabet Sangha offers us the opportunity to live this Buddhist teaching.


We come to the EBMC Alphabet Sangha acknowledging the presence of a rich long history that owes many bows to our founding and sustaining teachers (past and present): Larry Yang, John Mifsud, J. Doyle, Lien Shutt, Shahara Godfrey, Arinna Weisman, as well as many others combined with all the volunteer coordinators before us--they paved the way and were instrumental in creating the community we all feel when we attend the weekly sits. We seem to be growing weekly, and just a few weeks ago celebrated our sangha by having a picnic by Lake Merritt, showing our joint Oakland and Sangha pride.

Recently, the Alphabet Sangha embarked on and embraced a change in coordinators: in August, Andy Jones stepped down after giving generously of his time and ideas and supporting the sangha for over two years! In classic Andy fashion... 
 follow this link and discover what Andy did!
(left to right) Kip, Ramon, Andy and Carlos

EBMC's Mission Statement

Founded to provide a welcoming environment for people of color, members of the LGBTQI community, people with disabilities, and other underrepresented communities, the East Bay Meditation Center welcomes everyone seeking to end suffering and cultivate happiness. Our mission is to foster liberation, personal and interpersonal healing, social action, and inclusive community building. We offer mindfulness practices and teachings on wisdom and compassion from Buddhist and other spiritual traditions. Rooted in our commitment to diversity, we operate with transparent democratic governance, generosity-based economics, and environmental sustainability.

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