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Nashville Governing Council Meeting Minutes

Our governing council meets once a month to hold the business and community activities of the group. Each meeting is open to all.

GC Minutes March 17
17 Mar, 2019

General Council meeting 3/17

Members present:

Joe, Katye, Shelbi, Brandon, Court, Leslie, Rick, Andrea Furlong, Andrea Mai, Danielle, Mary Anne, June, Amy, Tyler, Paul, Jill, Leann, Jon, Stacey

  1. Budget

Current rent is $500

We have $11,000 in savings

Landlord discovered furnace wasn’t working. We have had no heat for a few months. The landlord gave us a space heater. The owner will not repair the furnace this year.

Some in the group wanted to renegotiate the terms of the lease given this.

Ask for refund for part of rent?

Check “General Facilities Maintenance” part of lease

Is this against Metro codes?


Tell landlord our issue? See if they can reduce rent for the months we haven’t had heat?

The point was made that our rent is so low that we may not have a lot of room to negotiate

Do we need to update electrical circuits? We can’t plug a lot of space heaters in at once

** Shelbi offered to talk to landlord with Joe

Is landlord trustworthy?

Is there a financial hardship for not fixing the heat issue?

Could we use yoga blankets?

** We can kindly set an expectation for facilities maintenance. Water fountains, toilet clogged, paper towels not dispensing, abandoned cars in lot have been issues. The abandoned cars were removed

** Read lease before talking to landlord

Are we dealing with two entities: owner and management company

  1. Motion was formed to separate from the legal Shambhala charter

We made a step last month to create space to explore implications of this motion and the arc and what’s been happening with Shambhala USA

Three options seem to be:

  1. leave
  2. stay
  3. postpone to see what happens (wait)

Do we remove ourselves and form a 501(3)c religious organization?

Our intent is to follow the Shambhala teachings

The letter is us writing to the interim board

Writing the letter happened before the motion to separate. It hasn’t been sent yet. Then the Kusung letter came out. Then the motion was made to separate

Can this statement be made within a Shambhala charter or do we have to step out?

Ask the group: Why are we considering leaving? What are the repercussions? Other groups are going through this too. The possibility that groups that leave could reform as an interconnected mandala

Danielle shared that the DC Shambhala is not in a regular Shambhala charter. They created their own non-profit and are a Shambhala center. DC is an independent legal center. They can provide the teachings.

One center (Southshore) left Shambhala USA

One shastri renounced her role — she formed another group

There is a legal dissolution fee

** Research more to understand the structure of DC Shambhala

Andrea Mai — the decision to leave or stay shouldn’t be influenced by what will happen to our money in savings

Amy — if we leave, what happens to the teachings?

We lose access to the curriculum and we couldn’t teach or lead courses here

Leslie — must be a member of Shambhala USA to attend larger events

Leslie — addendum to letter

Adjust letter, send, see response

Kalupa council has dissolved

The Court has dissolved

SMR lets people out of samaya bond who wants to be

Jill — if we stay with Shambhala, do we financially support SMR? No

Danielle — we don’t know about the future

Motion: to declare independence from Shambhala USA

*** Vote: 17-2 to stay

All present voted

Shelbi raised these important questions to ask based on what we've chosen to do

  • Risks
  • Doubts
  • Commitment
  • Participation

Rick — do we submit letter?

** Motion made to amend letter and voice concerns

Brandon — we should share group’s decision to stay — gives us power

Voting to stay is not complicity

Tyler — we need to get the letter out soon

June — expressed concern for those opposed to staying. We need to embrace them

The ability to hold two things at the same time

This letter is our commitment to participate

Leslie — lineage vs. legal/financial

We get caught in wanting to make samsara work for us, to be comfortable

Can we hold two things at once?

We can’t escape harming others

Tyler — functional (relative) vs. ultimate reality aren’t reconcilable

Jon — letter needs to go public

Short version should be available on our website

Removes the barriers to victims who want to come to our group

Court — it was important to make a statement — the community is the statement

Enlightened Society

SMR’s version of enlightened society is not what enlightened society will look like

Always be aware of our doubts and risks

Need time to work out issues of trust

Tyler — Develop a core team for resolving differences among membership

Suggestion box that is safe

Grievance process

** Post amended letter stating our stances

Could have a picnic gathering to discuss more about membership before April 15

It was noted that serious discussions would be better had in our meditations space

Nonviolent communication healing circle — Leslie

** Finish letter within two weeks

Joe, Andrea Mai, and Shelbi

Put it on our website and social media

Post on Shambhala network

Further action

1) Shelbi and Joe talk to landlord about lack of heat and facilities maintenance expectations

Read lease first

2) Amend letter and finish within two weeks. Joe, Andrea Mai, and Shelbi offered to work on this.

Send letter. Post on our website and social media. Post on Shambhala network

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off Nolensville Road

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