Category: News (page 2 of 5)

Building Sangha: Service with SIM

One of the most fundamental practices in building sangha/community is through service, both within/for the sangha and for the larger communities. Below are three opportunities that will not only provide service, but will also build sangha for those who participate.

Supporting Sangha

Have you arrived “early” for a Thursday sitting and/or a Saturday one day retreat? Have you seen the dharma hall empty, or is it fully set up, ready for the activities of the day? Do you know how it transforms from a generic space to SIM? (hint–not through devas or magic) To “become SIM,” volunteers are needed.

Set-Up Volunteers

John and Carol Meininger have retired from set-up crew after 10 years.  We are very grateful for all that they did — and we also now need to fill the gap.
Many thanks to Ian McLeod and Alan Gottlieb for volunteering for events in May and early June.  It was very much appreciated!

Now: Regular or Occasional Set-up

If you are able to  become a “regular ” set-up volunteer, that would be great. We need “regular” volunteers for the first Thursdays and fourth Thursdays of the month. If you aren’t able to commit to a “regular” schedule, but are able and willing to help on a one-time basis, on one (or more) of the dates below, that help will  be gratefully accepted. No experience necessary; training will be provided.  Note that set-up starts an hour before a meeting or daylong, and that the set-up crew also handles closing up at the end.  Please contact Margaret Buss at if you are interested in helping.

Below are dates and times in June and July when volunteers are needed:

  • Thursday June 22 at 5 pm (before the monthly meditation instruction) — need one
  • Saturday  June 24 at 9 am — Daylong Retreat with Heather Sundberg  —  need two or three (note retreat ends at 5pm)
  • Thursday July 6 at 6 pm — need two
  • Thursday July 27 at 5 pm — need one

Click here if you’re interested in volunteering in any way.

Diane’s Invitation June 27th

SIM Community Mentor Diane Wilde and Woody Garcia are giving a talk at Insight Central Valley in Modesto, CA on June 27th and Diane would love to have SIM sangha members attend.

Talk topic – Freedom: Inside and Out

Diane Wilde and recently released former inmate “Woody” Garcia, will talk about Buddhist practice in California prisons and the impact it is making on inmates and volunteers alike. Diane will read a few stories from her book, “Unlikely Lessons; Practicing Virtuous Conduct in California Prisons”. Woody will speak of his own Buddhist practice and what his life was like “inside”and his new life as a free man on the “outside.”

Residential Retreat Registration Opens

Registration is now open and a deposit by June 15th will secure your space at this retreat. This is for SIM’s 13th Annual 10 Day Residential Retreat, with SIM Founding Teacher Dennis Warren and Mentors Diane Wilde and Rich Howard. The retreat theme is “A Life of Deep Satisfaction Born of Peace“.  For details, click here.

Family Sangha cancelled for Mother’s Day

Family Sangha this Sunday, May 14 has been canceled due to Mother’s Day. Enjoy the day!

Are you missing something?

The Dharma Center’s Lost and Found is growing rapidly.  If you are missing water bottles, cups, caps, scarves, gloves, etc., please check the Lost and Found cabinets, located in the office in the front hall immediately to your right as you walk out of the kitchen.

New Tai Chi Class

SIM is sponsoring a six week class, instructed by Sabitre Rodriguez. This Tai Chi class is for beginning and experienced students covering the Yang Foundation 8 form. It meets at the Sacramento Dharma Center Tuesday evenings from 6:30 PM to 7:45 PM starting May 9th. For details and to register to the class, visit SIM’s calendar page.

SIM Accepts Direct Deposits for Dana

SIM recognizes that financial dana via credit card or PayPal does not suit everyone and the option to donate to SIM via direct deposit may be of interest to some people. If this describes you, please submit your contact information below and we’ll follow-up with details on how to set up your donation using direct deposit.

Audio Dharma Has Been Tagged

We’ve recently tagged SIM’s audio dharma posts so you can readily access previous dharma talks by the presenter’s name. You can view the tag list on the bottom right side of most web pages in the side bar. These tags are also listed below and we hope you’ll enjoy this new feature.

Monthly Donor Program – we’re 1/3 of the way

Thank you all who have stepped up to support SIM through our monthly donor program! As of March 31st, we have 13 people providing a total of $1092 monthly, so we’re a third of the way to reaching our goal of $3,000 per month. If you haven’t contributed yet and feel moved to, we encourage you to sign up online this month to help support SIM’s monthly expenses and ongoing activities!

We Launch Our On-Line Monthly Donation Program

The first several months in our beautiful new home at the Sacramento Dharma Center have been a time of great excitement and satisfaction as we expand SIM’s ability to be a resource for vipassana/insight practitioners like you. We offer regular meditation instruction, teachings, retreats, and opportunities to develop a deeper sense of community.

Along with that excitement comes the practical need to meet our ongoing financial obligations. SIM’s operating expenses, primarily rent that we now pay to the SDC, have increased dramatically. Annual fixed, recurring expenses are estimated at $36,000, or $3,000 per month. At the current rate of giving, SIM is only covering 50% of our monthly expenses.

To support our SIM community, we are asking you and other SIM members to enroll in a monthly donation program to help stabilize our financial future. Donations directly to SIM are crucial, as contributions to the SDC do not reduce SIM’s ongoing expenses. Monthly donations to SIM will help cover our fixed, recurring costs, such as rent and insurance, as well as provide funds for program development. If 60 people give $50 per month we will meet our $3,000 per month goal. Contributions of any size are welcome; we hope that you will be as generous as possible.

Support for our teachers, mentors and visiting presenters will continue to be provided through dana received during teaching events.
It is now easy to make a recurring or one-time donation on SIM’s website using PayPal or a credit card by following the link labeled “dana” at If you have questions about SIM’s financial situation or about donating, please contact Dennis Warren.

We appreciate your generosity and the generosity of everyone who contributes to SIM financially or through volunteer efforts. Both forms of generosity make SIM’s operations and future possible. We look forward to working and practicing together to create SIM’s future in the months and years ahead.

SIM Board of Directors
James Barnes     Barbara Briscoe     Barbara Colton     Sara Denzler     Renee Kunz     Catherine Vigran     Dennis Warren

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