St. Louis Shambhala FAQs

St. Louis Shambhala Mission Statement

The St. Louis Shambhala Meditation Group extends an invitation to all individuals,regardless of faith or background, to explore through meditation and practice how to live a life of happiness and compassion. Together we will work toward discovering our fundamental nature of basic goodness, and our inherent sense of wisdom, so that we can learn to live a loving life and cultivate an enlightened society where we can practice patience, generosity, and kindness.

Where does the St. Louis Shambhala meet?

The St. Louis Shambhala Meditation Group meets at: St. Louis Wellness Center  425 Marshall Ave.   St. Louis, MO 63119.

There is a parking lot for the building on Glen St, feel free to park there.  The entryway to the Shambhala group will be through the back door near the parking lot.  There will be a Shambhala sign taped to the door.

Do I have to be a Buddhist to attend?

No, we welcome people of all faiths.

What programs do you offer?

We offer open meditation times, which can include shamatha (peaceful abiding) sitting meditation, walking meditation, shamatha yoga, contemplations, reading from Shambhalian texts, listening to teachings via audio or DVD, and exploring the teachings and our personal experience with meditation through group discussions.  All are invited to participate or to sit quietly for these discussions.

Extended beginning and advanced teachings, with live instructors, are announced as they are scheduled.

 Can I just show up or do I have to call first?

You do not need to call first, however, if you are unfamiliar with Shambhala meditation, we ask that you arrive 15 minutes early.

What should I wear?

It is recommended that you wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing, suitable for sitting low to the ground. Since room and body temperature can vary, it is a good idea to wear layers, and as shoes are not worn in the meditation room, you may want to bring socks.

 If you are doing a day-long training or a nyinthun, you may want to bring a lunch.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­What items should I bring?

We provide zafus (meditation cushions), zabutons (sitting mats), sitting benches, and chairs for those who require a higher seat. You are welcome to bring in your own personal cushion or bench if that is your preference.

There is room for personal items, including hangers for coats and a shoe rack outside the meditation room, however, we recommend you leave all valuables in the car as they will be unattended inside the center.

All cell phones should be turned off and left outside the meditation room.

Tea and water are always available. If you have any special dietary needs, please bring with you.

The St. Louis Shambhala Meditation Group donation box is located outside the meditation room.  Please consider leaving a donation to help support the center.  Membership information and forms for donation receipts are nearby.

Do I have to sit for the full length of time?

No.  Sitting meditation usually lasts for 20-30 minutes, followed by a tea break or walking meditation time. If at any time you need to get up from the cushion during sitting meditation, you are welcome to do so, as long as you are mindful of other practitioners.

Is the building wheelchair accessible?

Yes, there is wheelchair access at the east side of the building, there is handicapped parking available, and the bathroom is wheelchair accessible as well.

Do you offer meditation programs for children?

We do not offer specific programs for children at this time. If you are an experienced practitioner and would like your adolescent child to join you, that is at your discretion.  lf you are new to meditation, we recommend that you get a sense of it for yourself first, then decide if it would benefit your adolescent.

How much does it cost to to attend a sitting and to become a member?

St. Louis Shambhala is funded by the generosity of those who come to practice with us. The recommended donation is $5 per sitting or $25 monthly.

To become a member, we suggest 25$ monthly and 300$ yearly.

We do not want to exclude anyone from participation or from becoming a member, due to financial restrictions.  If you have questions or you cannot afford the recommended donation, please contact our Group Coordinator, Linda Markowitz at shambhala.stlouis@gmail.com.

If you do not want to become a member, please feel free to attend sitting sessions as you wish.  St. Louis Shambhala is a 501c3 organization; therefore, all donations are tax deductible.  Please ask for details.

As a member, you will receive discounts on programs offered through St. Louis Shambhala as well as programs offered at other Shambhala Centers worldwide. You will be welcome to attend membership meetings to discuss the progress and development of the group and you will also have access to our lending library of literature and audio/dvd teachings.

Shambhala Quotes:

“If we are willing to take an unbiased look, we will find that, in spite of all our problems and confusion, all our emotional and psychological ups and downs, there is something basically good about our existence as human beings. Unless we can discover, that ground of goodness in our own lives, we cannot hope to improve the lives of others. If we are simply miserable and wretched beings, how can we possibly imagine, let alone realize an enlightened society?-Chogyam Trungpa

“In essence, the emphasis of the Buddhist path is to help us attain enlightenment, and the essence of the Shambhala path is to help us create and maintain a good society. When we put these two together, we have the Shambhalian Buddhist view of enlightened society.” -Sakyong Mipham

New to Shambhala?

Shambhala is an international community of urban meditation and rural retreat centers founded by the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and now led by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. Learn about our vision, lineage & community. More →

Ongoing Offerings

Our group offers a rich array of ongoing practices free to the public including weekly public sitting meditation hours and dharma talks. No prior meditation experience required to attend.  All are welcome. More →