Category: News (page 1 of 6)

SIM Community Meeting

Please join us for a meeting of the SIM community on Thursday night, March 1. After our regular sit we will have a break with refreshments, followed by presentations from the SIM Board and Senior Faculty regarding what we’ve accomplished in the last year and areas where we plan to direct attention and effort in the year ahead. We have scheduled ample time for community questions and comments, and are looking forward to seeing and hearing from all of you.

Nurturing Sangha Over Dinner

Nurturing Sangha Over Dinner is something new that we’ll be trying out for a few months and we’ll see if it is something we want to continue. We’ll meet monthly on the second Thursday from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm, before the regular dharma talk and sit. This is an informal gathering. Please bring your dinner and something extra to share, if you would like. We can continue to get to know one another and talk about how SIM can support us in our practice.

*The first Nurturing Sangha Over Dinner meeting occurred Jan 11 where SIM’s Board of Directors shared some plans on how the west end of the SDC lobby might be changed to better suit our needs.

Envisioning Update

The three main sections of SDC building

The Sacramento Dharma Center envisioning process is continuing with a focus on plans for the west end lobby. At the request of the SDC Board, the SIM Board has developed recommendations for creating new meeting rooms that could be used concurrently to support the anticipated growth in membership and activities of all three sanghas living together in the SDC building.
We would like to share these recommendations with interested members of the SIM community on January 11th at 6:15 pm, before our regularly scheduled Thursday night sit. Members of the SIM Board will be there to discuss the plans. In preparation for this meeting, you might wish to read through the Board’s recommendations (click here). We hope to see you on January 11th.


Not too late to support SIM

December 26, 2017

Dear SIM Supporter,

If you’ve already made a year-end donation to SIM, we send you our heartfelt appreciation!

If you’re still finishing up your year-end donations, please consider supporting SIM with a year-end or monthly donation for 2018! It’s easy to donate at or by sending a check to SIM at 3111 Wissemann Drive, Sacramento, CA 95826. Your generosity is the key to our success in providing ongoing support for our community and those practicing in the Vipassana/Insight tradition.

May your New Year be healthy, peaceful and happy!

Sara Denzler, Treasurer
on behalf of SIM’s Board of Directors

A message from Kamala Masters

December 15, 2017

Dear members of the SIM community,

I recently returned from a wonderful retreat with Guy Armstrong and Kamala Masters. Kamala’s love and extraordinary generosity were palpable throughout, and provided a strong support to our practice. On the last day of the retreat she made a personal donation to feed all of the yogis breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Kamala has been one of our Senior Teachers since SIM’s founding 15 years ago. She cares deeply about our organization and all the members of this sangha. When the retreat was over I asked her permission to share the fact that she has been a regular monthly donor to SIM since the program began earlier this year. She readily agreed, and offered these thoughts about why she gives to Sacramento Insight Meditation:

“The practice of generosity has been an important mindfulness practice for my life. Giving of myself—compassion, understanding and patience as well as material and financial resources—helps me to ‘let go’ and ‘let be’ more easily. I do this for the sake of others, and also for my own heart’s release, for the sake of deeper and deeper peace.”

Kamala encourages everyone to join her in support of SIM. I hope that you will hold this in your hearts as you consider your options for year-end generosity.

With metta, and all best wishes during this holiday season,

Cathy Vigran
Vice President, Board of Directors
Sacramento Insight Meditation

Senior Teacher Steve Armstrong in Sacramento Region

December 9, 2017

Dear Friends,

We have an extraordinary opportunity in 2018 to practice with senior teacher Steve Armstrong here in the Sacramento region. First, Steve will be leading SIM’s January daylong retreat. It will be held at the Sacramento Dharma Center on Saturday January 27, 2018, from 8:30 am – 4:00 pm. Registration is open now.  Please see this flyer for more details (Retreat Flyer .PDF).

Second, Steve will lead SIM’s annual residential retreat from September 7-14, 2018. This will be held at the Community of the Great Commission camp and retreat center near Foresthill, CA. More details and registration will be available early next year.

Steve’s theme for both events will be “Awareness, Insight and Liberation.” He will be using the January 27 daylong as both a stand-alone one day retreat and as preliminary groundwork (to prepare) for those planning attending the residential retreat. All who attend the January daylong will receive priority registration for the September weeklong retreat. These are Steve’s only teachings in California in 2018, so interest promises to be great.

Rich Howard
Retreat Manager
SIM Community Mentor

Update on Permanent Altar

The SDC Permanent Altar Committee has been working for months to develop a series of recommendations regarding the design and composition of a permanent altar for the SDC Dharma Hall and for the statues that would sit atop it. The Committee is comprised of senior practitioners from Sacramento Buddhist Meditation Group (SBMG), Sacramento Insight Meditation (SIM), Valley Streams Zen Sangha (VSZS) and the Sacramento Dharma Center (SDC).

After looking at hundreds of Buddha statues, the Committee recently recommended the purchase of a Theravadan, Burmese Buddha from a gallery in Vermont. The Committee agreed to bring the Vermont Buddha to Sacramento for the express purposes of it being viewed by the Boards and community members of each sangha, and to make a decision about its purchase. The decision needed to be made within a short time window dictated by the terms of a potential purchase agreement.

Members of the Committee subsequently and unanimously decided not to purchase, and to return, the Vermont Buddha to its owner. The primary reason for this decision was being informed that the SBMG Board of Directors voted it was not prepared to make a decision at this time.

The Committee has now decided to expand and balance Committee membership by having a total of six (6) members, consisting of one (1) woman and one (1) man representative from each sangha. The newly reconstituted Committee will revisit its mission and plan for the next step in this important project that will shape the feeling and use of the main Dharma Hall for many years to come.

SIM’s Annual Potluck

We are looking forward to seeing all of you at our Annual Holiday Event Thursday evening, December 14th at our Sacramento Dharma Center at 3111 Wissemann Dr, Sacramento, CA 95826. Please go the calendar page for details and to RSVP for yourself and guest(s).

As in the past two years, we will enjoy together our vegetarian potluck dinner and, afterwards, contributions of “personal dana”.  Do you have a favorite poem or reading, whether one you’ve written or one you just love?  Do you play a musical instrument, paint, sing, write, dance?  Do you have a special travel experience with photos you might share a few of?  We would love you to offer your passion, skill, or art to our group.

“Personal dana” performances/contributions can be no more than 3 to 5 minutes long.  You must pre-register in order to assure yourself a space.  “Personal dana” contributions do not have to be strictly Buddhist in nature, just whatever comes from your heart. This is a great way to get to know and enjoy each other.  It is also a generous act to share yourself with our sangha community in this way. We have room for only about a dozen performances in all, so please respond soon.

Your generosity helps SIM thrive!

Dear SIM Friends,

We hope this letter finds you well. As we approach the end of the year, we want to share what is happening at Sacramento Insight Meditation – changes this year, and how we can come together as a community to help our sangha grow and flourish in the year ahead.

The past year has been a time of growth and accomplishments, as well as significant adjustments for SIM. We moved to the beautiful new Sacramento Dharma Center, improved our website and moved many essential functions online, streamlined our operations and brought new clarity to analyzing our finances, while adjusting to increased expenses and strengthening relationships with our new SDC neighbors. The Board has been working hard to support these changes and lay the groundwork for continued development.

We have great hopes for the future. We want to strengthen our community with new opportunities for practice, including new initiatives for study and mutual support emerging from within the sangha. We seek to develop a stable income base to meet our new monthly obligations, while growing financially so we can offer new programs and reach out to new teachers. Our goal is to fulfill our mission of offering the best support possible to those in Sacramento practicing in the insight/vipassana tradition.

We need your help to accomplish these goals. Our projected operational budget for 2018 is approximately $56,000 – this is the funding needed to provide dana to our teachers and presenters, pay our rent, meet ongoing expenses such as insurance and financial and website support, as well as have funds to develop new programs.
As you plan your year-end giving, please consider supporting SIM by:
• Making a one-time year-end contribution. Any amount will help and be appreciated;
• Signing up for a monthly, automatic on-line contribution to SIM. It is simple, helps stabilize our finances and is the key to our financial success in the long run.

You can make a donation of any kind at dana/ . If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our Board members at .
We hope you will consider regularly supporting Sacramento Insight Meditation. Thank you in advance for your generosity. We look forward to practicing with you in the coming year.

Sara E. Denzler
Treasurer, SIM Board of Directors

A Special Event: State of the Sangha & Thank You

November 2 will be a special evening to review the considerable accomplishments we’ve made as an organization on our one-year anniversary in the Sacramento Dharma Center. Members of the SIM Board will share their perspectives on the State of the Sangha and plans for 2018 and beyond.

We’ll celebrate all that we’ve achieved in moving to a new physical home, building relationships with the other sanghas who are now our neighbors, and rising to meet the financial challenges that accompanied our move. We are pleased to be able to present a positive year-end report and to share our plans for 2018. We’ll look forward to hearing community members share their observations about the last year as well as new ideas for improvement and change.

An important part of the evening will be an expression of gratitude for the indispensable help from all our volunteers during this year of transition and for all our members for being part of this community and providing essential financial support.

We also want to announce some significant changes in the operation of our Board. This includes several new officers as well as a new President who is scheduled to serve a full two-year term beginning in March of 2018.

We’ll sit, have cake and tea, then have presentations, discussion and questions and answers. This will be a very special evening, and we look forward to seeing and hearing from each of you. Event details are on the calendar.

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