Ommmm: How To Set Up A Meditation Group

While many of us enjoy meditating alone, meditating with others can enhance our spiritual growth significantly.

In addition to helping people learn how to meditate, a meditation group can bring a tremendous amount of healing to everyone who attends.

To start, all you need are two people. You can download a free group starter kit here to help you.

Here are 10 easy steps to starting a meditation group.

meditation group

How To Start Your Own Meditation Club

1. Hold a meeting. 

Tell your friends and family that you are starting to meditate and that you’d like to form a meditation group. If they’re interested, invite them to join you.

Related: Why Meditate? The Minimalist’s Guide To Meditation

What I do is mention it casually in conversation when someone asks me what I’ve been doing lately. I tell them how I’ve been meditating and the benefits I’ve gotten so far, and they’re welcome to join me.

I’ve been quite surprised at how many people respond, even people from religious denominations I wouldn’t normally expect.

2. Find a place.

Once you have several members, you can start by meeting at one of the member’s house, and as your group grows, you can easily find another place, such as a spiritual bookstore.

There are also many churches that rent out rooms, and their fees are often minimal. Always strive to remain self-supporting. This will ensure that you remain autonomous, and don’t have to answer to any outside organizations.

You can fund your group by passing a basket during your meeting and asking members to make a small (optional) contribution—a dollar or two.

3. Schedule it.

Next, you need to decide when to meet. Keep in mind that you’ll never find a time that’s convenient for everyone.

Related: The Brutal Basics Of Time Management

Many groups meet on a weekday in the early evening starting somewhere between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. This time works well for people who work during the day because it gives them a chance to go home, have dinner, and then go to the meeting.

Other groups prefer to meet on the weekend early in the day, which allows for other activities the rest of the day.

4. Register your group.

Registering your group with the Mindfulness Meditation Institute will connect you with a worldwide network of spiritual seekers just like you. You’ll also receive many other benefits to support your group.

You can register your group on the website at Group Registration.

5. Lead your meeting.

The format in the Starter Kit will lead you through a typical meeting.

There are three important elements of an effective mindfulness meditation session: relaxation meditation, concentration meditation, and mindfulness meditation.

You can either guide your members through the meditation using the scripts provided or you can use the Quick Start to Mindfulness Meditation CD.

Related: 10 Things Every Good Leader Knows

6. Stay focused.

To help you stay focused on your primary purpose—to learn and practice mindfulness meditation—it’s  recommended to have a preamble, which includes your guiding principles.

The groups I’ve seen stay focused are the ones that read their preamble at the beginning of every meeting.

7. Be inclusive.

Use a beginning level format so that everyone has a chance to learn the basics of the practice. Once your members gain some experience, you can have two meetings—one for beginners, and the other for experienced members.

You may want to schedule them back to back, because some members will want to attend both.

8. Stay with one form of meditation.

At least in the beginning, stay with one form of meditation to learn and transmit the practice of meditation.

Related: 9 (Of Many) Amazing Benefits Of Yoga

The main thing to keep in mind is that you want to both teach and practice mindfulness meditation, so always include some form of instruction along with at least 30 minutes of meditation.

9. Recruit new members. 

To keep your meditation group strong and healthy, you need to recruit new members. There are many ways to do this, including word-of-mouth, social media, and community calendars.

10. Practice at least once a week.

You don’t have to meet only once a week. In fact, the more often you meet, the better.

The main thing to keep in mind is that you want to both teach and practice mindfulness meditation, so always include some form of instruction along with at least 30 minutes of meditation.

This will enable your members to experience the power of the mindfulness meditation practice.

The Takeaway

You don’t have to be a mindfulness meditation master to start a meditation group. In fact, part of the joy of forming a group is watching each other learn and grow as everyone’s practice deepens and evolves.

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charlesCharles A. Francis is the author of Mindfulness Meditation Made Simple: Your Guide to Finding True Inner Peace, as well as the co-founder and director of the Mindfulness Meditation Institute. In addition to teaching mindfulness meditation to individuals, he helps organizations develop mindfulness training programs for their staff to help them realize the cost-saving benefits of the mindfulness practice. He also leads workshops and mindfulness meditation retreats.

Image by andreeleclerc



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