Donation Based Classes

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In keeping with the tradition of yoga and dharma teaching, I offer some classes free of a set charge or at a fee that is a low as possible (just covering operational costs of rent, heat light etc) so that all may have access to teachings regardless of financial situation. This is called “Dana” the practice of generosity/gratitude. This refers both the the experience of generosity/gratitude for the teachings on the part of both the teacher and the student, in part because the teacher always remains a student themselves in the ongoing practice of awakening to the fullness of our human potential for wisdom and compassion.

If they are in a position to do so, participants are invited to make a contribution towards supporting the continuing work of the teacher. The suggested range of donation here at Yoga hOMe Sligo is up to from €1—€10 per session, but all are encouraged to make a choice that fairly represents the reality of their situation, which may change over time and be more or less than the suggested amount. When a financial contribution is not possible, students are encourage to connect with the teacher to see if there are other ways in which Dana could be offered, such as setting up/clearing up the room or other activities which might support the offering of the teachings.

The practice of Dana is in fact an important part of our meditation and wisdom practice as it does involve questions of trust, truthfulness, equity, equanimity, gratitude, generosity and faith, not only on the part of the students, but also on the part of the teacher. It is also a way of weaving ourselves into the tradition; the teachings have been handed down in this way for over 2500 years and by participating in this system we are maintaining a connection with the original spirit of the Buddha’s teaching and also with the future of the dharma because it is through generosity and gratitude on the part of the students that a teacher can continue to offer future teachings.

I myself have benefited greatly from this practice and so I invite participants at Yoga hOMe Sligo to share in this long tradition of making these teachings available to all. My participation yearlong Intensive Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Training at Spirit Rock Center was only possible because 50% of my tuition was covered by the Dana contributions from a local community meditation group in the Bay Area. Without this supplement, I would not have been able to afford the training. So without Dana, I would not be in a position to offer teachings here at Yoga hOMe. The meditation and study group I attended weekly (and sometimes bi-weekly) in SanFrancisco, SF Insight was lead by two spirit Rock teachers and operated entirely on the system of Dana. The teaching at SF Insight has been invaluable to my understanding and practice.

Here’s how Spirit Rock Center explains the practice on their Website

Dana (pronounced “dah-na”) is a Pali word meaning generosity. Dating back to the time of the Buddha, there has existed an interdependence between those who offer the teachings and those who receive them.

According to the Buddha, generosity, or sharing what we have, is one of the central pillars of a spiritual life. In the act of giving, we develop our ability to let go, cultivate a spirit of caring, and acknowledge the inter-connectedness that we all share. It is a basis of wholesome karma. The Buddha created a system to develop this quality of open-handedness whereby those who share the teachings are dependent on those who receive them. Monks and nuns go on daily alms rounds with a begging bowl, relying on the generosity of lay people for support in continuing their teaching and spiritual life.

It is the practice of dana that has kept the Buddhist tradition alive for more than 2,600 years in Asia, where committed supporters have given generously to establish networks of monasteries and retreat centers providing for millions of teachers and practitioners. At Spirit Rock, we carry on this joyful tradition in the form of inviting donations from the community so that we can continue to offer the Dharma to future generations who will get to explore the path to waking up because of our efforts.
— https://www.spiritrock.org/2016/dana

The classes that are offered here at Yoga hOMe Sligo through Dana system are:

Embodying Practical Wisdom: Mindfulness and the Teachings of the Buddha (Monday)—minimum operational fee supplemented by optional teacher Dana

Chair Yoga(Tuesday and Thursday)—fully operated on optional teacher Dana