Triangle Insight Meditation Community
September 2021 Newsletter

Not causing harm requires staying awake.
Part of being awake is slowing down enough to notice what we say and do. The more we witness our emotional chain reactions and understand how they work, the easier it is to refrain. It becomes a way of life to stay awake, slow down, and notice.

Pema Chodron
Our home is the Episcopal Center at Duke
505 Alexander Ave. | Durham, NC 27705 (when safe to gather in person)  

Morning meditation: Monday and Thursday
Wednesday meditation with Dharma Talk, or as Insight Dialogue (below)
Wednesday Evenings
6:30 - 8:00 pm (Insight Dialogue: 6:30 - 8 pm)

Sept. 01 - Ron Vereen
Sept. 08 - Scott Bryce
Sept. 15 - Francesca Morfesis (Guest Teacher)
Sept. 22 - Phyllis Hicks (Insight Dialogue)
Sept. 29 - Jeanne van Gemert (Guest Teacher)

October 06 - Ron Vereen
October 13 - Scott Bryce
October 20 - Sarah Bryce (Guest Teacher)
October 27 - Phyllis Hicks (Insight Dialogue)

Monday and Thursday Morning Meditation
7:00 - 7:45 AM (click here for more info)

Zoom locations to be emailed.
Dalai Lama Teaching on Zoom
2/8/ 2021. Dharamasala, HP, India
Zoom Email Subscriptions
If you would like to receive an invitation to one or both Zoom meditations, please subscribe on our Schedule webpage, or tell us the Zoom list(s) you would like to join.

To receive this monthly newsletter, please complete the newsletter subscription on our Newsletters webpage, or send your request to the info email above.

If you would like to change any part of your subscription(s), please email us and we will make this change for you.
The Practice of Insight Dialogue at Triangle Insight
Insight Dialogue is an interpersonal meditation practice and is offered at Triangle Insight once monthly, usually on the fourth Wednesday of the month. It brings the mindfulness and tranquility of silent meditation directly into our experience with other people. 

The new website for Insight Dialogue is an excellent resource for learning more about the practice:

The evening begins with silent meditation practice, followed by gentle mindful movement, and then shifting into dyad practice where interpersonal mindfulness is explored with a partner in response to a contemplation that is offered. The dyad practice is optional so that anyone who chooses to remain in silent practice may do so, rather than shifting into dyad practice. One can investigate the guidance of the contemplation internally, noticing the moment by moment unfolding of internal experience. Note that the ID practice goes from 6:30 to 8:00 pm while meeting on Zoom. When it is possible to resume in-person meetings the time will return to 8:30 pm, to allow for more spaciousness and time for questions. We hope you will be able to join us.
Reference Notes for Wednesday Dharma Talks

Triangle Insight Meditation teachers invite us to consider these notes to the references they used for their Dharma talks. Please click on links below to see teacher notes for the current month.

August 04 – Ron Vereen
August 11 – Scott Bryce
August 18 - Emily Burke
The Thinning of Self:
Aligning Dharma Practice with Its True Destination

A Daylong Benefit for Triangle Insight
with Rodney Smith

Saturday, October 16th, 10 am - 5:30 pm EDT
From Rodney Smith:
"We can so easily lose our orientation of dharma practice when we empower the sense-of-self to act on freedom’s behalf. However, when we use our practice to thin the sense-of-self by both understanding and diminishing its prominence, we stay honest to the dharma's true intent. 

This daylong will encourage a simple realignment of our intentions and practices to that end, and will consist of dharma talks, silent and guided meditations, Qigong (lead by Ellen, Rodney’s spouse) and Q & A. As a benefit for Triangle Insight all dana will go to this organization for the purchase of much needed audio/visual equipment.
Please give generously." 

Join us for this virtual day of practice with Rodney Smith, Founding Teacher of the Seattle Insight Meditation Society (SIMS) and a Core Teacher at the Forest Refuge. Rodney's gracious offer that all donations go to Triangle Insight will help cover the costs of upgrading our Zoom technology as we anticipate a shift to providing both a virtual and an in-person option once we return to the Episcopal Center.

This event is being offered free of charge and will be by registration only with a limit of 100 participants per our current Zoom plan. If registration appears to be approaching this limit as we move closer to the time of the event, we will make a one time upgrade to accommodate all who wish to attend.

If you would like to register now you may do so by clicking on this link.

If you would like to donate now you may do so by clicking here.

Once registered you will receive access to the event landing page that will have the details of the schedule for the day along with the Zoom link to join the event and further directions on how to donate. If you are unable to attend you will still have an opportunity to donate. And thank you in advance for giving generously!
Community Engagement
This space is open for items to engage our Buddhist values and spirit in volunteer activities, and to share with each other such compassionate endeavors in our community and beyond. Please see below to suggest items.
This month the TIMC Newsletter editorial committee adds current information for two Durham organizations featured last month; both invite volunteer help and donation for upcoming activities, as the spirit moves in each of us.
Fed Up in the South, September News, Schedule

On their website: "Find us at the Lakewood Shopping Center (2000 Chapel Hill Rd., Durham NC) every other Friday from 11 am to 1 pm."

Calendar for Food Distribution Days to finish 2021
Back-to-school event: August 21st.
September 10, 24;
October 8, 22;
November 5, 19;
December 3, 17, 31

FED UP is a community program in Durham for food distribution and opportunities to low-wage workers, the BIPOC community and Durham residents without transportation. FED UP joins the Carolina Jews for Justice, Triangle Poor People’s Campaign, and Raise Up/Fight for 15.
For Information about volunteering at upcoming Fed Up activities, contact Karen Zeigler at 919-819-2073.
Financial Support is available for Training Programs and Workshops in Racial Justice and Diversity. Please contact us to apply:
IF YOU HAVE A GROUP, EVENT or ACTIVITY to share in this section, please send an email to the, including main details and relevant links.
Please use these links to visit the website for this information
Welcome Committee and TEAM INFO
Sangha means spiritual community, and it is treasured because without it awakening cannot be sustained.
____ Jack Kornfield, After the Ecstasy, the Laundry  

The Welcoming Committee wishes to foster the experience of belonging to a diverse, tolerant community connected through mindfulness practice, where all feel welcome and safe. We seek to link all members and newcomers to ongoing activities and to ensure the Zoom connection is available. You are welcome to Visit our Webpage!
Spiritual Friends: Kalyana Mitta & Racial Affinity Groups
Having admirable people as friends, companions, and colleagues is actually the whole of the holy life. - The Buddha
Kalyana Mitta
In her article, Taking Refuge in the Triple Gem, Christina Feldman says of sangha, “To learn how to speak truthfully, to listen without defensiveness, to learn how to offer and receive kindness, to let go of our personal story and listen deeply to our universal story, are all lessons of wise community.” Our Spiritual Friends Groups provide a trusting, supportive space for this rich relational practice.
A beautiful aspect of this process is that as the heart of the dharma is enriched in our own lives, we are contributing to the spiritual journey of others, and the third jewel of sangha illuminates the path that we travel together. As Christina Feldman notes, “We cannot seek our own awakening; we can only take part in the awakening of all beings.”

Current KM Group Openings
Openings are available in these KM groups: Insight Dialogue and Raleigh.

Waiting Lists are available for Chapel Hill-Carrboro and Secular Dharma.
The KM-RA Coordinating Team of Sarah Tillis, Beth Lauderdale, and Tamara Share expresses deep gratitude for the dedication of our sangha.

May our Kalyana Mitta and Racial Affinity groups be of great benefit to all.
If you would like more information, want to join a group, be on a waiting list or start a new group, please contact Sarah Tillis, KM Coordinator:
Racial Affinity
Known as RAGs, Racial Affinity groups allow people to deepen self-awareness around issues of race in small, racially homogeneous groups. As we face our long history of systemic racism and violence against people of color, RAGs provide a safe space where members can integrate the dharma into their exploration of racial belonging and racial habits of harm.

At present the RAG coordinator position is vacant and we are actively looking for someone from the TIMC community to fill this role. If you would like to learn more about this volunteer position and to apply, please contact the board at
Sangha Support: Caring Circles
A TIM Sangha Initiative connecting and strengthening the bonds of our shared practice.
Caring Circles offers the Triangle Insight Meditation Sangha a simple framework for requesting and providing services to cope with the uncertainties and needs of everyday life. In this time of the coronavirus pandemic, knowing there is a helping network for sharing and receiving is a great joy and safe haven.  
Currently, two TIM Sangha members coordinate service requests with other TIM members who are ready to volunteer their assistance as a form of dana service. 
To request aid, contact Mary Mudd, one of the Caring Circle coordinators, or
send an email to Caring Circles, or use Caring Circles Request for Assistance  (optional form)

In your initial communication, please let us know if the request is of a sensitive nature. The coordinator will make special arrangements with you. 
Financial Support 
Scholarships for Training Programs and Workshops in Racial Justice and Diversity
Our goal:
To help individuals and our community deepen the understanding of how unexamined views of race can limit the mind and human systems.

A Scholarship Fund for this purpose exists through donations from the TIMC General Fund and the generosity of several Triangle Insight members.

If Triangle Insight sangha members would like to receive scholarship support for training with OARNC, White Awake, or other programs addressing racial injustice, please email the Board at
We invite the community to join this initiative by contributing directly to this scholarship fund.

  • For your convenience, you may use the dedicated PayPal portal,

Or visit our website

Board Meetings

Cynthia, Leah, Martin and Ron convened an open board meeting on August 21, 2021, on Zoom. Two participants from the sangha were also present. The minutes will be forthcoming, but here's a brief summary:

-- A decision was made to continue meeting virtually due to the new COVID delta variant, to be reviewed again at the September 21st open board meeting. Sam Laurent at the Episcopal Center has assured us that our time slot will remain open for us once we are comfortable returning to in person meetings.

-- Ron updated the process of Triangle Insight obtaining its own Zoom account with multiple licenses, so that no one person has to use their personal account nor be solely responsible for hosting our Zoom meetings. With 5 or more licenses, TI would be able to receive a non-profit discount. Ron will expand on Martin's tech upgrade report from last meeting by contacting a Zoom representative to discuss to resources for technical upgrades needed for hybrid meetings as well as to set up the separate TI Zoom account.

-- There was further discussion on the Rodney Smith daylong fundraiser for Triangle Insight on October 16th, with plans to set up an event in Constant Contact so that registration and donation buttons can be included in the announcement to appear in the September newsletter, where further details will be available.

-- Cynthia will take the lead in exploring the creation of a Community Connections Committee to help evaluate and coordinate volunteer initiatives in the community that could benefit from our support. This is an effort along the lines of our earlier Shramadana Initiative, which encouraged work and participation freely given, as acts of dana.

-- The board continues to search for someone to take on the role of the Racial Affinity Group Coordinatorl. A description of the role will be developed. If interested, please contact us at

-- The board board discussed having a rotating leadership for agenda formation and meetings, and Cynthia has volunteered for this role for the next meeting.

The next open board meeting will be held on Zoom, Sunday, Sept 19, 1-3 p.m.
Newsletter Submission Pointers
To submit items for the monthly newsletter, please review these general pointers and consult the Newsletter Submission Guidelines for important details.

  • At least two weeks prior to the month in which you wish your announcement to appear, submit new items to
  • Include in your request a short statement of your relationship to TIMC.
  • New requests submitted in the last week of any month may not be accepted if time is a factor in preparing a final copy.
  • Changes to existing entries may be incorporated if submitted early in the last week of any month.
  • Entries that have not been updated since COVID may be removed. All authors are encouraged to update their newsletter entries and to resubmit, including TIM committees and groups.
  • Keep the text crisp and short, but include important details and attachments. Instead of longer texts, refer the reader to websites for additional information.
  • Indicate how many months you want your entry to be published, and
  • Stay in touch with updates if any specific details change. You are responsible for calling in changes and end dates for ongoing classes, groups or other continuing entries.
  • Special circumstances may require adjustment of the deadlines indicated here; early submission is a best practice and helps the newsletter editors determine where, how and if the item submitted shall be published (please see #1 in the Guidelines).

Please contact us through, and include "Newsletter" on the subject line. We will help you get your item published.
The Triangle Insight Board is looking for interested sangha participants to join us in building our community. Please consider helping us with
– Newsletter – Website – RAG coordinator vacancy
Racial Affinity Group Coordinator
The RAG coordinator position currently is vacant and the Board is actively looking for someone from the TIMC community to fill this role. If you would like to learn more about this volunteer position and to apply, please contact the board at

Communications Network
Are you interested in shaping the future of Triangle Insight's communication portals? Please consider volunteering your time to build a Communications Network committee. Open to input and development.

Newsletter Editorial Committee
To all interested sangha members, we are forming a Newsletter Editorial Committee and hope you will contact us to volunteer or ask for additional information . Please email noting Editorial Committee in the subject line

Plans are in the works for refreshing the website with advice from. a professional website designer. This is awaiting further discussion and development by the Board, If you are interested in working on planning the website, send us an email:

Thank you!
You are welcome to contact me directly with any comments or suggestions to improve the newsletter and website.

In humor and good intention,
Leah Rutchick,

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