Reflecting on Ten Years

It is late evening and I am alone in the Dharma Hall at PIMC. The Buddha and Quan Yin sit serenely upon their altars. A gentle light from the streetlights slants in through the windows. The only sounds arise from occasional cars traveling on Duke Street.

I sit pondering the ten years that have passed since we purchased this old church and converted it to the Portland Insight Meditation Center. Countless hours of mindful effort have created this beautiful vibrant place where lives intersect and are transformed. Hundreds of people have come through the front doors seeking a spiritual path, which would allow them to manifest their happiness, compassion, love and wisdom. Some stayed briefly and others remain to this day.

Guided by a the teachings of the Buddha there have been countless hours of silent meditation, classes, small groups, potlucks, gardening and social service.

The vision of a Dharma center that would serve us from cradle to grave is becoming a reality. Our children's program is flourishing. We have celebrated births, and honored our loved ones after they passed. There has been laughter, tears, grief, joy and spacious equanimity. The Dharma hall has contained baby blessings, weddings and memorials. We honor the truth of impermanence
that shines brightly within and before us.

The rock-polisher of community has ground off some of the sharp edges of our personalities. The elegant teachings of the Buddha have matured the qualities of wisdom, love, forgiveness, patience, and compassion that are the highest manifestations of human life.

What began as the seed of an idea transported from Asia has grown roots and wings here on the corner of 66th and Duke streets. We look forward to another ten years, and beyond into successive generations of people who will find a spiritual home at PIMC and
the Eight fold Path.

PIMC would not be what it is today without the generous participation of hundreds of people. I am profoundly grateful to each person who has contributed ideas, financial support, creativity, ideas, and volunteer work in making PIMC a reality.

I am humbled by the privilege of my role in this adventure. I look forward to more years together as we continue this mysterious unfolding and ripening of the Dharma in America.

Robert Beatty.
January 2014