Welcome to Dharma Chautauqua, Omaha, Nebraska, USA


About Dharma Chautauqua:
time and location | recommended reading | download flier |

Welcome to Dharma Chautauqua! 

This group explores the liberating and transformative practice of Vipassana (insight) meditation. We are pretty relaxed and informal. The primary emphasis is on teaching each other to cultivate Mindfulness in our everyday lives. Participation in this group is free and open to all people.

The 90-minute session is broken down into three segments:

  1. Introduction, Meditation Reading, and Meditation,
  2. Dharma Presentation (about 30 minutes),
  3. Group Sharing.

During the first segment we introduce ourselves,  and one of us reads aloud a short meditation reading (often about mindfulness and/or the mechanics of mindful practice).  We then practice 30 minutes of Vipassana (Insight) meditation. How-to instructions are given during the first 1-5 minutes of the meditation.  We alternate weekly between practices of sitting, standing, and walking meditation.

This is an excellent place for beginners to learn basic skills and establish good meditation habits.  It is also an opportunity for seasoned meditators to get in some practice while sharing experience with others and enjoying a Dharma study.

In the second segment we have the Dharma presentation (about 30 minutes).  Often the inquiry is about mindfulness, basic Buddhist meditation practices, or Buddhist/Western positive psychology.  Any group member can present and determine the content of the Dharma presentation (with some advance notice, i.e. at the next meeting). Presentations may include material from any of the wisdom traditions and/or psychological/spiritual wellness strategies.  We also frequently invite guest speakers from the spiritual community to talk about how their contemplative practice has improved their quality of life.

The third segment is a time for group sharing.  We seek to provide a safe refuge for people to share, in complete confidence, any challenges or positive growth they are experiencing.

Will participation in this group interfere with the spiritual path I'm currently on?  
Not at all. There is not any specific belief system here.  Our intention is to help each other find clarity and the then determine for ourselves the way that is most beneficial. 

Will participation in this group help me in my recovery program?  
Absolutely! Mindfulness helps everyone!  It also can be greatly beneficial regarding any path a person could choose to walk upon.  Our objective is to provide acceptance and support for all people regardless of their situation in life or personal history.  We introduce ourselves by name only, and avoid attaching labels to ourselves.

Time & Location:
Dharma Chautaqua gathering is held on

  • Thursdays 6:00-7:30pm
  • First Unitarian Church, 3114 Harney St, Omaha Nebraska USA
    (enter through side door)

The style of Buddhist meditation most often presented here is called Vipassana, meaning "to see clearly".  It comes from the  Anapanasati Sutra and is probably what the Buddha taught to his students. Two good, very readable books covering the Anapanasati are Larry Rosenberg, Breath by Breath, and  Thich Nhat Hanh, Breathe, You are Alive

Recommended Reading:
Here is a reading list of good, introductory books. Topics and readings for this group may be drawn from these and other sources.
Jon Kabat-Zinn, Wherever You Go, There You Are
Bhante Gunaratana, Mindfulness in Plain English
Bhante Gunaratana, Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness
Larry Rosenberg, Breath by Breath
Larry Rosenberg, Three Steps to Awakening
Thich Nhat Hanh, Miracle of Mindfulness
Thich Nhat Hanh, You Are Here
Thich Nhat Hanh, The Heart of Buddha's Teaching

Tara Brach, Radical Acceptance
Tara Brach, True Refuge
Hugh G Byrne, The Here and Now Habit
Rick Hanson, Hardwiring Happiness
Thich Nhat Hanh, Buddha Mind, Buddha Body

John Buksbazen, Zen Meditation in Plain English
Steve Hagen, Meditation Now or Never
Steve Hagen, Buddhism Plain & Simple
Steve Hagen, Buddhism is Not What You Think
Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner's MInd
Kosho Uchiyama, Opening the Hand of Thought

Downloadable Materials:
Dharma Chautauqua Flier
(feel free to print and post wherever you deem appropriate)