Welcome

Spring flowers, and meditation bell set in foreground

Welcome to Flagstaff Insight Meditation Community (FIMC).

We are dedicated to fostering a welcoming refuge for all people to explore meditation, mindful living, and the teachings of the Buddha. We are committed to cultivating an appreciation of the value of diversity and to acknowledging the need to recognize and dissolve barriers that separate us from each other. We open our doors and hearts to all social identities including, but not limited to, all races, classes, sexual orientations, gender identities, ages, abilities, cultures, and ethnicities.

Read More About FIMC


FIMC only meeting online currently
Due to COVID-19 concerns, the FIMC Board has decided to move our public offerings to an online format using Zoom. More Information about Zoom

Weekly Offerings

Next Monday

On Monday, January 5th, at 7PM (MST), there will be a virtual Dharma talk followed by a sitting meditation. Please stay for an optional discussion afterwards, beginning around 8:10PM.

Join Monday Sit

Zoom Meeting ID#: 246 725 464
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Monday's virtual meeting will open up at 6:30pm. Need to dial in? Learn How.

Next Wednesday

On Wednesday, January 5th, at 6:30PM (MST), there will be an online discussion group.

Join Wednesday Sit

Zoom Meeting ID#: 957 7492 7457
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Wednesday's virtual meeting will open up at 6pm. Need to dial in? Learn How.

Tea and Teapots

Next Thursday

On Thursday, January 5th, at 6PM (MST), there will be a virtual Dharma talk followed by a sitting meditation.

Join Thursday Sit

Zoom Meeting ID#: 804 836 431
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Thursday's virtual meeting will open up at 5:30pm. Need to dial in? Learn How.

On Thursday, January 5th, at 6PM, there will be a Dharma talk followed by a sitting meditation. Please see Activities & Location for more details and location information.



Unfamiliar with the Zoom Platform; need help articles; find installer links? Please see FIMC's dedicated page for More Information about the platform and a great list of resources including how to Dial in.

Find out more information about Zoom Video Conferencing


Announcements

Mindful Hike November 7th

Gaining Spiritual Insights from Nature
A day-long mindfulness hike

At a certain point you say to the woods, to the sea, to the mountains, the world, Now I am ready. Now I will stop and be wholly attentive. You empty yourself and wait, listening. – Annie Dillard

Saturday, November 7th, 2020
10:30am - 4:00pm
Weather Permitting

Register By: October 31st, 2020

In some Buddhist schools practitioners have learned about the Dharma through listening deeply to the natural world. On this one-day hiking retreat, we will explore connecting on a deeper level with nature through the art of receptive mindfulness. The hiking will be interspersed with sitting meditation as well as mindfulness exercises that will connect us more deeply to the environment. There will also be time for discussion. In these explorations we have the opportunity to touch our deepest wisdom and activate a natural compassion for ourselves and the world. The retreat is designed for beginners and experienced practitioners alike.

Fitness level for this retreat: It is necessary to be physically fit enough to hike on rocky uneven ground at high elevation for an entire day to join this hike. Participants should also be prepared for inclement weather such as wind, rain, or cold temperatures as well as for sunny weather.

See original announcement.

Upcoming Weekend Retreat

Moving into Being Moved:
An Experiential Insight Meditation Retreat Online
with Brian Lesage

November 21 & 22, 2020
Saturday & Sunday
ONLINE

Register Here by November 9th

During these uncertain and challenging times, a spiritual practice offers the opportunity to be moved by the circumstances around us in a way that we can respond from a wise compassion that is grounded in a deep equanimity.

In this weekend retreat, we will be exploring the conditions that support the unfolding of compassion balanced by equanimity in a step-by-step manner. This will be a silent retreat with guided meditations and time for discussion each day. Each day will be interspersed with time on Zoom and time away from the screen. Suitable for beginning and experienced mediators.

For details about this home retreat, read the guidelines for the retreat here

Registration is Required - Click Here to Register by November 9th

If applicants exceed the available space 2 weeks prior to the retreat, a lottery will be used to select retreatants. Those not selected will be placed on a waiting list. If an applicant is not selected in the lottery after applying for a retreat, the probability of getting accepted increases with each subsequent retreat they apply for.

See original announcement.

Voting and Our Practice

In this time of great fear, it is important that we think of the long-term challenges—and possibilities—of the entire globe. Photographs of our world from space clearly show that there are no real boundaries on our blue planet. Therefore, all of us must take care of it and work to prevent climate change and other destructive forces. This pandemic serves as a warning that only by coming together with a coordinated, global response will we meet the unprecedented magnitude of the challenges we face.”
- The Dalai Lama

 

Dear Friends,

We understand that some of you may prefer to keep politics and spiritual life separate. We wish to be clear that we are not supporting any specific candidates, ballot measures, or political parties. At the same time, we also recognize that our choices at the ballot box can be a way of expressing our deeply held values that can have a profound impact on the future of our country, and this year those choices may be more important than ever. 

Some of you may have seen a letter circulated by 100+ Buddhist teachers around the country, which can be found on the Insight Meditation Community of Washington's website: https://imcw.org/Blog/buddhists-help-get-out-the-vote It includes the quote above and reads in part: 

This is a truly critical time in American society. We are in the midst of a global pandemic, financial collapse, climate change emergency, and approaching a November election that threatens to exclude many eligible voters. As Buddhist teachers and leaders, we recognize that every vote and voice needs to be heard to help guide the next years of our society wisely.

A mutual caring community is one of the central teachings of the Buddha. In these times so marked by divisiveness and a lack of compassionate leadership, many of you have wondered how you and your whole community can help move us in this direction.”

Here are some resources for registering and voting in Arizona:

• The deadline to register to vote in the state primary election is this Monday, July 6. You can find more info on how to register here: https://www.azcleanelections.gov/register-to-vote

• You can check your voter registration status here: https://my.arizona.vote/PortalList.aspx

• PEVL is Arizona's Permanent Early Voter List. Anyone can join it. By joining, your ballot will be automatically mailed to you, making it really easy to mail back or drop it off in person. The deadline to request a ballot by mail for the August 4, 2020 Primary Election is July 24, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. Learn more here: https://www.azcleanelections.gov/how-to-vote/early-voting/ballot-by-mail

• The primary election is on August 4 and the general election is November 3. You can find more information on how to vote here: https://azsos.gov/elections

• You can find more election informations for Coconino County here: https://www.coconino.az.gov/195/Elections

If you feel moved to do more to help with these efforts, you can volunteer to help register voters, get out the vote, or be a poll worker. Links to get you started with these opportunities are included in the collaborative letter, which again can be found here: https://imcw.org/Blog/buddhists-help-get-out-the-vote

May you be well. May our work together bring freedom and happiness to all beings.

See original announcement.

Confronting Racism

We continue to be confronted with the historical legacy of racism that is interwoven into the very fabric of our society. Names such as George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery have now been added to the seemingly endless list of unarmed black people murdered by police. Our hearts are heavy with a mixture of feelings such as grief and outrage and compassion.

At the heart of our practice is a desire to see clearly. At this time, we are being called to face the realities of discrimination that black, indigenous, and other people of color face daily in our country and around the world. We acknowledge that as an organization, FIMC has failed to adequately address issues of diversity, inclusion, and equity. We are at the beginning of our journey to investigate how we can be present with these issues, and be of better service to both our sangha family, and to people of color in our wider community. This work will not be easy, but we are committed to it as an essential part of opening the pathway to freedom.

It is said the Buddha’s teachings turn upright what has been overturned. In light of this, we commit to this principle of righting wrongs by learning to decenter whiteness and to deepen our listening.
-Brian Lesage, FIMC Guiding Teacher

We encourage white members of our community to explore how their hearts and minds have been overturned by habitual tendencies rooted in racism and bias.

In that light, we invite you to read two essays written by Buddhist practitioners of color, which offer two perspectives on the intersection between racial justice and our practice:

A central principle of Buddhist ethics is that we practice not for ourselves but for the benefit of all; therefore, the conditioning that perpetuates racial suffering and separation is to be known and uprooted through our practice and our actions. We all have a part to play in the symphony of racial healing."
-Ruth King, African American psycologist & meditation teacher

One way FIMC plans to move forward is by making diversity, inclusion, and equity a top priority. We will educate ourselves on how we can do this skillfully, commit to concrete actions as soon as possible, and announce these actions to our community. If you would like to join us and get involved with these first steps, please contact us at contact@flagstaffinsight.org

May our work together bring freedom and happiness to all beings everywhere without exception.

May all of us turn upright what has been overturned to dispel the tyranny of racism.

Flagstaff Insight Meditation Community (FIMC) Board of Directors:
Allen Atkins
Laura LaBranche
Brian Lesage
Leslie McLean
Tasha Miller Griffith
Janine Schipper
Chris Taesali

contact@flagstaffinsight.org
www.flagstaffinsight.org

Opportunities to Help

For those in our sangha who are at home and looking for meaningful ways to connect and contribute during these challenging times, we would like to offer a few suggestions.

To our healthcare providers and other essential workers, who are working harder than ever, we would like to offer our deep appreciation and thanks.

Opportunities to help

  • FIMC is looking for volunteers to assist in hosting Zoom meetings. If you are able to help support the tech side of this, please contact Chris at contact@flagstaffinsight.org
  • If you are willing to give a short dana talk at an online sit (no technical ability required) please contact Tasha at contact@flagstaffinsight.org
  • Dharma Relief, a Buddhist organization formed to provide protective gear for medical workers, is seeking both donations and help with coordinating local distribution of masks. For more information please visit https://dharmarelief.org/
  • Reaching out to neighbors, friends, and local organizations such as food banks and animal shelters are also wonderful ways help

We hope that this time of disruption can also be an opportunity to deepen our practice, to appreciate our interconnectedness, and to offer our service. We are continuing to gather online every Monday and Thursday evenings, and we have a new gathering on Wednesdays. Everyone is welcome to join us, which now includes anyone with internet or phone access, no matter their physical location. Details of how to connect to each gathering are posted on the main page at http://flagstaffinsight.org/

Wishing you health, safety, and peace,

The FIMC board

FIMC Virtual Online Meeting Passwords

Starting today, all future online public meetings hosted by FIMC will use passwords.

Passwords are now enabled for our next Monday meeting on April 20th, 2020 and all other public offerings. Password information is provided in this email and on our website homepage so that participants can easily find the resources needed to join each meeting.

We kindly ask that you familiarize yourself with the information below to help us navigate our implementation of passwords.

Why is FIMC choosing to enable passwords?

It has come to our attention that there are individuals that have been Zoom bombing public meetings and sharing unwanted content via video, screen, chat, etc. Therefore, to reduce the chances of this happening to one of our meetings, FIMC has implemented several protections and is now enabling passwords for all our public offerings.

Please do not share our meeting passwords online.

FIMC asks that if anyone wants to share our offerings online—via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, forums, other websites, etc—we ask they only share the direct link to our website for instructions on connecting, where the meeting information (including password) can be found and not the passwords themselves.

 
Why shouldn't we share passwords on other sites?

By sharing passwords on other platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, forums), our risk significantly increases.

Why can FIMC share the passwords on its website?

We have implemented code on our website (and in this email) to reduce the chances that hackers/robots can scan our pages to extract this information. This code is designed to require an individual to actually read the password—with the intention of preventing robots extracting this information automatically via code or scripting.

Will the passwords change?

Each weekly meeting has it's own unique password—Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday—and these passwords will not change week to week at this time. We will notify our community via email and website if passwords change in the future.

Having trouble reading the passwords below or on our website?

Please reach out to help@flagstaffinsight.org for assistance.

See original announcement.

Caring for Our Community: FIMC Temporarily Meeting Online Only

Dear friends,
 
As a way of embodying Wise Action that is informed by care and compassion, the FIMC Board has decided to move our public offerings to an online format for now. We are not cancelling our offerings, rather we are offering a new format for our community to continue to connect during these changing times.

We will begin to meet online starting Monday, March 16th at 7:00pm (MST/PDT). Please visit the FIMC Website for more information on how to participate on Mondays and Thursdays.

It is important that we do what we can to support the overall health and well-being of our community, including those in vulnerable populations and our health care system. In light of this, the FIMC physical location will be closed until further notice.

It is especially important and valuable at this time to come together to practice in community, in whatever form is available. This can even be a wonderful practice opportunity to switch from an individual or small group perspective into a collective perspective of what is best for the whole. Our spiritual practice at its core is meant to support us in meeting such uncertain times with wisdom, compassion, and equanimity. In this moment in which 'social distancing' is encouraged to maintain our physical well-being, we can continue to come together as a community to explore and support each other in the practice of the Dharma by gathering online.
 
FORMAT and PLATFORM
 
FIMC will be hosting our weekly online sits (meetings) using the Zoom platform, which is FREE to participants, and allows them to connect via computer, phone app, or dial in by long distance phone call. Links and information for each meeting will be posted on our website. We plan to offer time in advance of each sit's regular starting time to help assist those with challenges connecting. We welcome participants to start the process of joining a meeting early if they are unfamiliar with the platform, or new to participating in online meeting spaces.  
 
SUPPORT

For our first online meeting, Monday March 16th, we will be opening up the meeting 1 hour early at 6pm (subsequently 30 minutes early), with a regular start time of 7pm for the Monday sit. This is to provide enough time for community members who are new to this format to join the meeting, and for support to have sufficient time to help anyone having trouble connecting. After attempting to join the meeting, if you continue to have trouble connecting, please contact us at:

help@flagstaffinsight.org or send us a message via our FIMC Facebook page.

     - Please include your phone number if you would like someone to call you.

MORE INFORMATION

For anyone seeking more information on the novel coronavirus, or to clarify our perspective on this decision, please see the following resources:


Sincerely,
The FIMC Board

 

See original announcement.

Announcement Archives

Upcoming Activities

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Find out more information about Zoom Video Conferencing

Unfamiliar with the Zoom Platform; need help articles; find installer links? Please see FIMC's dedicated Zoom page for More Information about the platform and a great list of resources.


Embossed decorative art of buddha