This blog contains announcements, insights and articles from the Insight Meditation Community of Washington


IMCW All-Sangha Picnic

Help us kick off our re-opening to in-person events with an All-Sangha Picnic! Come spend some relaxed down time and lunch with sangha members from across the DMV. We’ll introduce you to our board members and teachers, but there will be no formal program.

Training the Squirrel-Chasing Mind

Sometimes training the mind in meditation is compared to training a dog to “stay.” While there’s some appeal to this image, I’m not sure that it holds up when examined closely. Yes, there is the quality of coming back to the breath that is similar to a dog coming back to its master. But does the mind really respond like a pet?

Fierce Compassion for All Beings

“All beings fear danger, life is dear to all. When a person considers this, he does not kill or cause to kill.” (Dhammapada, 129.)  The first precept in Buddhism and the heart of the Dharma path is the practice of non-violence (ahimsa). It is the vow to not destroy, cause to be destroyed, or sanction the destruction of any living being. Through accepting this precept, we recognize our relationship to all life and realize that harming, or causing harm, to any living creature harms oneself....

Working with Breath when the Breath is Difficult

When I was first studying meditation, whenever I would encounter the instructions to focus on the breath, I would think, "why would I want to do that?" I have always had respiratory issues. From asthma, to year-round allergies, to bouts of chronic bronchitis, the breath has never been a sanctuary for me, it's been a source of frustration and pain. So when I would hear people talk about finding bliss by focusing on the breath, I would feel discouraged at best, and jealous at worst. It took a while for me to just allow myself to use other focal points....