As a practice center, Olive Branch is also a source of books, tapes and meditation instruction.

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Olive Branch . . .

More about Judith & Greg . . .

It is very hard to do it alone. The Olive Branch Sangha gathers two times a week as a "meditation support group" for you. We sit together in meditation—sometimes guided, sometimes silent—and then have a discussion on practice-related topics such as meditation technique, mindfulness in daily living, Dharma principles, how to transform problems & suffering into wisdom, joy & compassion—and our own personal experiences along the Path.

Every Wednesday at 7:00 PM and every Sunday at 10:30 AM, the home & garden of Greg Smith & Judith Handelsman Smith becomes a Practice Center where meditation & mindfulness in ordinary living are taught by example & word. Everyone is a teacher and everyone is a student here. Although the prevailing flavor is Vipassana, you will meet an eclectic group of meditators with varying amounts of experience from many different traditions.

You are invited to join this exceptional gathering—to take refuge in our sangha, our meditation support group.

"Taking refuge in the Sangha is a very important practice. Sangham saranam gacchami—I take refuge in the Sangha—is not a declaration of faith; it is a matter of practice. Abandoned, alone, you get lost, you get carried away. That is why you come to a practice center, in order to take refuge in the Sangha. You allow the Sangha to embrace you. You allow the Sangha to transport you like a boat, so that you can cross the ocean of sorrow. If you have a Sangha to belong to, if you have a Sangha to embrace you and guide you in your practice, you are a happy person. So taking refuge in the Sangha is a very deep practice, especially for those of us who feel vulnerable, shaky, agitated, and unstable. I take refuge in the Sangha is a very urgent practice. Wherever you are, you have to find a Sangha to belong to. And if your Sangha does not have that quality that you expect, then you should make use of your energy and your time to help build the Sangha, and improve the quality of the Sangha."

--Thich Nhat Hanh

More about Thich Nhat Hanh



08/18/03 -- 02/08/07