Dana Sala Pavilion

A beautiful outdoor pavilion (or sala) will soon be arising at Dhammadharini Monastery in the Sonoma Mountain area of Penngrove in the San Francisco North Bay. 

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Our Dana Sala will be a covered open-air pavilion for making offerings, receiving blessings, and sharing Dhamma, as well as a shelter for walking, standing, and sitting meditation.  Until we have completely overcome the Coronavirus pandemic, the Dana Sala will be a safer space for the resident monastics to greet and speak with friends and visitors from our local community, share Dhamma, and practice meditation together.  Since our local weather is so mild, the Dana Sala will be able to be used almost all year round.

We were inspired by the example of Buddha Catu Parisa Bhikkhunis’ temple in Fairbanks Alaska, where a similar structure was put up last year. 

Supporters began to make donations dedicated for the Dana Sala last fall, and there was a wonderful outpouring of support during the 2020 Holiday Giving Season when the Dana Sala was one of the announced projects for both Giving Tuesday and our celebration of Sanghamitta Day last winter. One hundred and eight individuals and groups have participated, offering more than $40K in needed funds to build the Dana Sala.

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The new Dana Sala will be located outdoors in the monastery meditation garden, in the very space already greatly blessed by many senior and esteemed bhikkhu and bhikkhuni teachers during our Monastery Opening Blessings back in 2016 and again during last year’s outdoors Kathina celebration. 

To build our Dana Sala pavilion, we will be using a kit crafted by Forever Redwood, a local company dedicated to restoration forestry. The Dana Sala’s redwood deck will be built by another local company vetted and recommended by friends. Traditional Thai architectural elements are being donated by the

president of our Dhammadharini Support Foundation, Srisakul (Susie) Kliks, whose birthday giving last autumn was dedicated to our Dana Sala Project. A long-time friend who helped us out greatly in the beginning with our Aranya Bodhi Hermitage, licensed contractor John Radebold, is helping to oversee the project.

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There are still opportunities to join in the merits of creating and offering our Dana Sala pavilion together: for able bodied volunteers,  for creative landscaping experts,  and for monetary supporters —

  • an all-weather altar and rūpas representing the great transmission that has brought the Bhikkhunis’ lineage to us. (Buddha rupas/statues have been pledged)

  • installing electric fan, lights and outlets

  • landscaping the walkway from the monastery meditation hall to the Dana Sala

  • landscaping a permanent Bodhi Tree location adjacent to the Dana Sala

  • moving our meditation garden guest yurt from its present location and replacing our old, dilapidated garden shed with a larger shed, beautiful enough to complement the Dana Sala, and giving visual and sound privacy between our Dana Sala and the nearest neighbor.

Thanks to your support, all of this will become an excellent outside space for making offerings, receiving blessings, listening to the Dhamma, and for meditation. We may even be able to begin offering daylong retreats again for our local friends outdoors, and we know our monastery residents and visitors will appreciate the outdoor meditation opportunities this conducive space will provide. Our Dana Sala pavilion will be a boon for Dhammadharini’s residents, together with our local community and visitors for many years to come. Welcome to contact Dhammadharini if you would like to be a part of offering our Dhamma Sala pavilion.

Offering an outdoor Dana Sala pavilion at Dhammadharini Monastery for our community

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