The East Bay Meditation Center (EBMC) is an independent center located in downtown Oakland, at 285 17th Street at Harrison, just 3 blocks from the 19th Street BART station. We offer meditation training and spiritual teachings from Buddhist and other wisdom traditions, with attention to social action, multiculturalism, and the diverse populations of the East Bay and beyond.
A detailed profile of EBMC appears on the website of the World Religions and Spirituality Project of Virginia Commonwealth University.
Our programs include meditation classes, daylong retreats, sitting groups, workshops, and classes.
EBMC seeks to offer its programs to the widest possible audience. We do this in two ways:
1. Some of our programs are specifically for People of Color, or the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex & Same-Gender Loving Communities. This provides a safe space for individuals who daily confront the effects of oppression, racism, or homophobia and heterosexism in their lives, and who therefore may choose to initially avoid mixed programs.
2. We offer all of our programs for no registration fee or cost to the participant (except fundraising programs). Instead, we invite all program participants to make voluntary gifts at the end of each event, to the level of their ability, for the teacher(s) of the event and to the East Bay Meditation Center. This allows us to offer our programs to all individuals, independent of economic means. Traditionally, this is known as the practice of "Dana" or Generosity, and is a part of many spiritual traditions.
Dana is the ancient Pali language word describing generosity arising effortlessly from deep gratitude. It is the first of the perfections (paramis or paramitas, virtues necessary for awakening) in both Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism. In Southeast Asia, the practice of dana, or generosity, is taught before the practice of meditation.
At EBMC, we seek to make the practice of Dana an individual and a collective social practice. By making individual voluntary gifts to support the teachers and the center, practitioners develop their generosity, which contributes to their spiritual awakening. By relying on the generosity of our community to sustain the center and its teachers, we create a community in which generosity becomes a social force.
EBMC teachers and workshop leaders are either members of the EBMC Teacher Sangha (the word “sangha” means community of spiritual practitioners), or visiting teachers.
The EBMC collaborates with, but has no formal affiliation with, other meditation centers in the Bay Area and beyond.
Out of respect for people with environmental illnesses, we request that everyone attending EBMC please not wear fragrance or scented products when attending events at EBMC. This includes clothing that has been laundered with fragranced detergent or softening products. We greatly appreciate your efforts to make EBMC accessible to those with MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivities). Please view our list of fragrance-free products and related resources that can assist you in keeping EBMC fragrance-free.
The East Bay Meditation Center is wheelchair accessible.
For larger image of the graphic below, please click here.
An edited video of "Mindfulness and the Possibility of Freedom: Angela Davis and Jon Kabat-Zinn in Dialogue," a benefit for the East Bay Meditation Center that was held on January 15, 2015, is now available!
Please go to http://davisandkabatzinnvideo.eventbrite.com.
"EBMC continues to be a ground and a place of nourishment, or, quoting Lawrence Ellis, a watering hole for spiritually-based social justice activists who are working hard to transform suffering in our society... We are clear that it takes all of our efforts to transform the many ways that oppression creates situations of "othering," so that we can make progress toward a liberated society of wisdom, and compassion in action."
To read the entire report, click here.
Please practice generosity and keep EBMC's operations running smoothly by Adopting a Bill! You can adopt all or part of one of our monthly bills by clicking below.
Four Sangha members are generously participating in this way of giving and we ask you to join them. Deep bows of gratitude to our generous Sangha!
Some of our bills include:
Insurance: $425 - ADOPTED
Phone: $50 - ADOPTED
Office Supplies: $175
Internet: $30 - ADOPTED
Program Supplies: $85
Web Hosting: $18 - ADOPTED
Database Hosting: $20 - ADOPTED
Security System: $45 - ADOPTED
Online Communication: $80
Bookkeeping system: $20 - ADOPTED
Payroll Service: $150
Click on the Donate Now button. Choose the “recurring donation” option and indicate which bill you’d like to pay in the “Event/Program Designation” line. It’s that easy!
There are a number of items we would love to have at EBMC that would make our home even more warm, efficient, and accommodating. Please view the Wish List page for more details.
Volunteering for EBMC is fun and inspiring, and a great way to deepen your spiritual practice. We have a variety of volunteer positions, some of which can be done anywhere with Internet access, and some of which require being on site at the meditation center, either on a regular basis or for a specific, time-limited project. Our generous, talented volunteers are an important part of the heart of our community, and are all leaders in helping to make EBMC a vibrant and sustainable community resource. For more information, check out our volunteer page.
A few of our wonderful volunteer painting crew. To volunteer for other special projects like this, email through our Contact Us page. For more information about other volunteer opportunities, visit our Volunteer page.