Deepen Your Practice by Becoming a Gatekeeper or Timer

meditation above

Serving as a gatekeeper or meditation timer is a lovely way to both deepen your own practice and support the sangha of fellow practitioners. These roles are vitally important to the function of our center, because they make group meditation possible.

Shastri Sharon Keegan will provide training in timing and gatekeeping Sunday, Feb. 7, 12:30-2:30, and we encourage anyone who is interested to attend. More details.

Wondering why people choose to serve as gatekeeper or timer, and what it’s like? Here’s what some members had to say:

Why do you serve as a gatekeeper or timer, and what’s it like?

“It’s an opportunity to be of service to the sangha and to support peoples’ practices. It also serves as a motivator to hold myself a little more accountable to the technique. . .something about sitting up there in front of everyone.” Ben Skolnik

“Holding the space as timer/gatekeeper is humbling and gratifying. Any opportunity to give in this way is a celebration for all of us on the journey!” Paula Bass

“The reason I serve as gatekeeper and a timer is because I value and appreciate the Burlington Shambhala Center’s open generosity of offering public sits most days of the week. This availability is what opened the doors of meditation to me and provided me the access to experience and discover the immeasurable benefits of sitting practice. Being a gatekeeper or timer is another way of committing to one’s own practice and to the life of our sangha.” Sharon Kelly

“I like to greet people. I also enjoy protecting the container so other people meditating can be assured of safety and tranquility. I can still meditate as gatekeeper yet I feel as though I’m ‘involved in the action’ and of benefit to the sangha. It’s good for everyone to have a place to ‘settle’ before joining the other practitioners who may be in blissful samadhi.  Also, I like to see if I can open and close the door without making any sound at all.” Eric Higley

“It can be stressful since it is a heightened sense of awareness since you are maintaining the container for others as well as doing your own practice. It is a profound practice in itself to watch one’s mind while being mindful of the care of others.” Joyce Oetjen

“It’s a wonderful way to work with fear and fearlessness.” Yannick Chassereau

“It strengthens my practice and feels good to be of service. As timer, you need to be on time and get things set up properly. You get to make the shrine room orderly and inviting. You can alternate sitting and walking periods in a way that works for you. You grow in appreciation of everyone else’s practice.” Anya Hunter