All levels of meditators are welcome to attend meetings (including those with no previous experience); however, we encourage people to “bring your own practice.”

There are lots of different meditation practices. We encourage everyone to find something that works for them. As a Buddhist community not centered around a specific lineage, we have a wealth of resources to draw from – and a lot to learn from each other. There are many expressions of the Dharma (Buddha’s Teachings). While some people may benefit from sampling a range of practices, others prefer a more systematic, focused approach. Both seem to have their pros (repertoire of “antidotes” vs. more depth ) and cons (confusion vs. narrow view). However, we believe there’s great value in, eventually, choosing a practice and sticking with it for some time. The idea is to develop a strong foundation. Then it may be easier to venture out and explore while still being able to return “home.”

SEBC has chosen the breath as a common object of meditation – although there are many different ways of practicing with the breath too (e.g. focusing on the breath at the tip of the nose, expanding/contracting midsection, rising/falling abdomen; counting breaths from 1-10; saying “in” on the in-breath, “out” on the out-breath, etc). Some people focus exclusively on the breath and develop concentration; others notice a more expansive quality of the breath, using it for support (like an “anchor”) while tracking the changing objects of awareness – perhaps developing calm in the process. We think it’s useful to strike a balance and investigate our experience. In addition, we practice loving-kindness (mettā) together, which helps to settle the mind, generate positive intention, and develop the heart (compassion). 

We hope that you’ll use your discernment as to which practice/s work/s best for you. Remind you, we’re a practice group led by fellow meditators (“facilitators”) rather than teachers (although occasionally we host guest teachers). Consider us spiritual friends (kalyāṇa-mittatā).

To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.

-Henry David Thoreau