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

Post-Retreat Meditation Practice Encouragement

There is something special about the ending of a silent retreat. Whether it feels as if it’s the best retreat we’ve sat, the most difficult, or in-between. Perhaps it’s the sense of leaving the intensive, protected atmosphere for practicing the Dharma and wondering how to incorporate it into the usual routine of our daily lives.      If you’re new to practice, then you have a wonderful foundation on which to build. If you’ve been practicing for a while, then the retreat may have been a resetting of your practice. What now?

Prayer and the Dharma

For the last two months, my now 7-month-old child has woken me up around 4:20 a.m. I’m lucky if I get five hours of sleep a night. I am exhausted.  All of the effects of low sleep are painfully apparent. I’ll put the box of Cheerios in the refrigerator or forget to put my daughter’s shoes on before we go out for a morning walk. Trying to complete a 10-minute work task may take 30 minutes because I follow every impulse to get a snack, text a friend, step outside, or find a new exciting song on Spotify. But the most harmful effect is that I am more irritable. I struggle to be gentle, kind, and non-reactive in some of the most important relationships in my life....

The Invisible Majority

The vast majority of American Buddhists are of Asian heritage, yet they are too often ignored, mispresented, and even looked down upon. Chenxing Han offers five ways we can start to heal the great divide in American Buddhism....

Living in Overwhelming Times

Living within a pandemic is often a struggle, one forced on us by living out of synch with the rhythm of life. For those not working in “essential” jobs, we remember having regular appointments like tea with a friend on Wednesday, and breakfast on Sunday with a family member or a haircut every six weeks or so. With those everyday anchors gone, we are unmoored, yet stuck at home. Sometimes we don’t even know what day it is. For a species so dependent on contact for our sanity, the isolation, the absence of a social life, gives us fewer opportunities to calibrate our behavior....

The Power of Equanimity

At this momentous time in our nation’s history, “equanimity” probably does not describe what most of us are striving for right now. On the contrary, many of us are striving for justice, for healing—some of us, for survival. Is the peace and balance of meditation taking us in the wrong direction? Not in my understanding. In my experience, equanimity has great power—especially at times like these....