As we enter the third month of our temporary closure, it is increasingly apparent that the IMS community is eagerly awaiting the (safe) return of the meditators who infuse IMS with the energy and vitality that serves as fuel for awakening. We have previously published that we will continue to be closed through May and June. While plans for reopening are underway, our path forward is not yet evident, with state, federal and scientific recommendations as our guide. Still, as we wait in the present pause between the past and future of IMS, three insights have emerged:
- Our community is strong. Despite the uncertainty of the times, and the stress and suffering that is present for so many, IMS donors, yogis, teachers, volunteers and staff have rallied together to care for one another and our institution. Patience and compassion have been abundant, and our shared ethical commitments have given our community the resolve and the resilience to continue to serve the dharma and each other.
- Our community is connected. For many years, IMS appropriately resisted the trend to deliver content online. When the retreat center was open, we believed that the most effective way to serve yogis was by offering silent retreats on our campus. With the campus closed, we have carefully and selectively begun offering online retreats. Our community of yogis has rallied around this effort which has closely held to our mission and values. For more about our online retreats, click here.
- Our community is generous. Like all nonprofit institutions that rely on the generosity of supporters to achieve a mission, IMS is deeply concerned about the social and economic impact of an extended closure. Generous donations are coming in (thank you!) and it is also true that we will need a significant amount of additional support in the weeks and months ahead, and our community to rally together to create a sustainable path forward.
While we are closed, the IMS staff remains hard at work while mindfully adhering to all appropriate safety protocols recommended by the State of Massachusetts and the CDC. Campus maintenance projects are underway under the leadership of Facilities Manager James Sanner and Operations Director Peter Baker, including:
- Refinishing floors and adding new paint in the Retreat Center foyer and coat room.
- Remodeling floors, paint and furniture in the Retreat Center teacher-student meeting rooms.
- Replacing damaged floors in the dining room, hallways and walking rooms in the Forest Refuge.
- Upgrading the Retreat Center electrical system and campus septic systems.
Your additional support at this time enables us to fulfill three critical responsibilities while we remain closed:
- As mentioned above, maintaining and improving our campus to ensure we can welcome back yogis when it is safe to do so;
- Providing essential employment and healthcare coverage to our staff, and dana for our teachers;
- And, delivering online dharma content that really makes a difference during this crucial time.
We thank you for your steadfast commitment to IMS and hope you will consider donating now to help us weather this unexpected global crisis. All contributions, no matter the size, will help IMS as it continues its mission to strengthen peace, compassion, and generosity.
Your Friends at IMS