Basket Dana

History & Purpose


Rooted in the living transmission of Theravada Buddhism, the purpose of the Durango Dharma Center is personal and collective liberation. We practice together to cultivate awakened minds and compassionate hearts. Building a culture of generosity and responsiveness, we aspire to cultivate the seeds of awakening for all beings.


Our highest aspiration is to offer the skillful means that unveil the innate, intuitive wisdom from which liberation blossoms.

Our intention is to practice:

  • Stewardship: Our effort and commitment is to align our decisions and actions to our vision, mission and values.
  • Belonging: Grounded in our commitment to diversity and equity, we actively create a culture of belonging. We are dedicated to raising our awareness of dominant culture and cultivating our unawareness of subdominant culture, creating a community of belonging for folks of all identities, including race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, class, religion, and more.
  • Courage: We take risks to speak honestly, reveal vulnerabilities and create authentic dialogue.
  • Personal Accountability: We keep our relationships clear by practicing self-awareness and ownership of our feelings, agendas and judgments and revealing them as much as we are able to further our connectedness.
  • Support: We stay present to our own and others’ suffering. We are willing to respond to perceived and articulated needs.
  • Sila: We cultivate non-harming through our speech, actions, minds and bodies.​


Our community of practitioners (sangha) started in the early 1990s when a small group of dedicated practitioners began gathering in each other’s living rooms to practice insight meditation (vipassana). By 1999, the group, then known as the Durango Sangha, had outgrown the living rooms and began to meet in rented spaces, starting with the Rocky Mountain Retreat Center.

In 2005, the group was renamed the Durango Dharma Center. Over the years, the organization expanded several times, necessitating moves into larger spaces until purchasing a permanent home at 1800 East Third Avenue. After a complete renovation, the Durango Dharma Center opened its doors in January, 2016. This beautiful space was made possible by the generosity, hard work, and talent of many volunteers and donors.

“The task in practice is to realize the difference between the mind and the activity of the mind. It is that simple.”

-Ajahn Tate