The Vimala Sangha is composed of two Buddhist groups sharing one teaching philosophy—one based in Tiburon, CA (Vimala Sangha Tiburon) led by Dharma teacher Lew Richmond, and one based in Mill Valley, CA (Vimala Sangha Mill Valley) led by Dharma teacher Ed Sattizahn. The practice style of Vimala Sangha especially supports dedicated lay Buddhist practitioners, and draws inspiration (as well as its name) from Vimalakirti, the “householder Buddha” of Buddhist scripture whose wisdom was said to surpass that of all the Buddha’s other great disciples.
The Vimala Sangha is in the lineage and teaching style of Zen Master Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. Both Ed and Lew studied with Suzuki Roshi during his lifetime, and view The Vimala Sangha as an expression of Suzuki’s vision of a universal meditation Buddhism free from sectarian limitations and influences. Vimala Sangha’s forms of practice and methods of inquiry are inspired by Suzuki Roshi’s founding vision, are illuminated by the ground of American society and culture, and are respectful of all teachings and schools of Buddhism.
We also honor the value of kindness as primary to all Buddhism, and at the end of every meditation period, we recite this loving kindness verse:
May all beings be filled with Loving Kindness,
May all beings be free from suffering,
May all beings be happy and at peace.