Online Sangha

This morning I was delighted to learn (from a comment on a blog post) that our Breath in the Heart Meditation would be shared online as part of Plumline's Monday morning Sangha.  In fact, it is going on as I write.  

Although Buddhist studies have not been a part of my background, and I have had no training in mindfulness meditation, I am always struck by how much my meditations seem to resonate with those traditions.  As I've said before, the deepest truths can be arrived at and expressed through many different paths.  

I enjoyed visiting the Plumline website.  Plumline describes itself as "Building online Sangha in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh".  For those who don't know, "Sangha", roughly translated, means spiritual community.  A community of like-minded practitioners is felt to be essential to support on-going spiritual practice in Buddhism.    

Those interested in Buddhism may want to visit Plumline.  Thich Nhat Hanh, from whom they derive their inspiration, has written one of my all-time favorite poems - "Call Me by My True Names".  (See Thich Nhat Hanh speaking on mindfulness on YouTube.)

I've come to feel our podcasts are like a giant group meditation.  We don't see and meet each other for the most part, but we truly are meditating together -- thousands of us.  I've hoped to provide some support for that experience in this blog and on our Meditation Oasis website. Perhaps there are yet other ways that we can create community for those who are interested. I've thought of different ways -- an online course, a chat group, a conference call.  I'm not sure what will actually manifest, and would be interested in your ideas.

On Podcasting Meditation

Usually when I lead guided meditations, it's in person. Podcasting has been a very different kind of experience. In person, I see everyone's faces, I have a sense of "where they're at" with meditation, and I can feel the energy of the group and how it's responding during the meditation. There's an immediate kind of feedback mechanism. The meditations are created by the consciousness of the group.

When I record a meditation for a podcast, I know its also being created by the group, and yet I don't really know who is "out there". It's been great receiving emails, and they've helped me know what people are responding to and hoping for in future podcasts. One woman, for example, wanted some direction about coping with grief, and I plan to focus on that in a future podcast.

I'd love to hear from you -- you can leave comments here if you wish. Ultimately I know, however, that even if I don't hear from another person, we are meditating together in what, for me, is a most unexpected and delightful way. Thanks for visiting and thanks for listening!