Open Door is an Insight Meditation community based in Portland, Maine. We welcome all people of every cultural and religious background, sexual orientation, gender identity, color, age and physical ability. All practitioner levels are welcome.
We gather* to deepen our meditation practice and support a strong, thriving and open meditation community in Southern Maine. We look forward to welcoming you.
This community is guided by Chas DiCapua and supported by The Steering Circle. We are currently welcoming new volunteers to help us. Learn more here.
We welcome all sponsors and benefactors. If you are interested in sponsoring Open Door, please Contact us for more information.
*Due to COVID, we are currently meeting over Zoom. Our goal is to resume in-person gatherings when it is safe to do so.
OUR GUIDING TEACHER
Chas DiCapua is the guiding teacher for Open Door, leading our weekly gatherings and retreats. Chas has been practicing Buddhist meditation, primarily in the Theravada or early Buddhist tradition, for over 30 years. His practice and study include the IMS/Spirit Rock teacher training program and over two years in silent, intensive meditation retreat.
Spending time in and learning from nature has been, and continues to be, an important vehicle for Chas, fostering understanding and compassion, which has been strengthened, in part, by multiple solo wilderness retreats.
While supporting students in formal meditation practice and intensive retreats, Chas encourages the use of what life has to offer, including relationships, as a way to cultivate the Noble Eightfold Path.
Expanding the practice from the personal to the collective has become increasingly important as he brings the practices of truth, clear seeing and compassion to the collective challenges of systemic racism, patriarchy, heterocentric bias, and climate change for himself and his students.
We are deeply grateful to our founding teachers for their ongoing support of our community.
Susa Talan is a dharma leader who founded ODMC along with teacher Alexis Santos. She has been studying and practicing Insight Meditation since 2006 and is a long-time student of Sayadaw U Tejaniya with whom she ordained temporarily in 2010. Susa is currently in a 2-year Community Dharma Mentoring program with Narayan Helen Liebenson. She offers one-on-one mentoring as well as workshops on mindfulness and meditation in a variety of settings. She is also an artist and illustrator: susatalan.com and continues as a regular guest teacher at ODMC.
Alexis Santos cofounded ODMC, along with Susa Talan. He has been in the field of meditation and mindfulness since 2001. Alexis' primary teacher has been Sayadaw U Tejaniya, from the Burmese Theravada tradition, and with whom he was ordained as a Buddhist monk from 2003 - 2005. Alexis completed the Spirit Rock/IMS four-year teacher training program with Jack Kornfield and others, including mentors Joseph Goldstein and Carol Wilson. You can learn more about Alexis and his teaching schedule on his website: alexissantos.io. Alexis will continue to guest teach at ODMC.
Phoenix Soleil is a teacher and practitioner of the Insight Meditation tradition. She is currently working as a retreat support associate at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. She is also a trainer and practitioner of Nonviolent Communication (NVC), a form of compassionate communication that assists in attuning to our feelings and values for more successful interactions. She has led trainings in communication, racial justice, and meditation for organizations such as Google, Kellogg Foundation, UC Berkeley, Insight Meditation Society and Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute. The most important ingredients in her trainings are fun, passion, and intimacy. For more on her, visit her website: www.phoenixsoleil.mystrikingly.com