The Community page is where sangha members can post self-organizing sangha participant activities such as hikes, picnics, outings, etc.  These activities are not initiated nor officially sponsored by Upaya Sangha of Tucson LLC.

If you would like to post an event, please send an email to Sensei Al Genkai Kaszniak with the title, event description, date of the event, where to meet, how to contact you, etc.


Bill Thompson’s Art & Poetry

Click here to see Bill Thompson’s art and read his poetry.


New Announcements:


International Migrants Day Celebrated at Tucson Evergreen Cemetery Candlelight Vigil, Dec. 18, 4:00 pm

Southern Arizona humanitarian, religious and Native American leaders will host a public sundown candlelight vigil beginning at 4 p.m. on International Migrants Day, Dec. 18 at the Tucson cemetery where the remains of hundreds of migrants discovered in the Sonoran Desert in Southern Arizona have been buried after attempts to identify many of them were exhausted. Pima County Medical Examiner Dr. Gregory Hess and leaders with Tucson Samaritans, the Colibrí Center for Human Rights, No More Deaths, Humane Borders, Derechos Humanos,Tucson-area churches, synagogues and mosques and the Tohono O’odham Nation and Pascua Yaqui Tribe will offer remembrances and prayers during the vigil at Evergreen Cemetery, 3015 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ. “Our vigil is both a remembrance and a reminder of the horrific toll on people desperately seeking a better life or asylum in this country,” said Rev. John Fife, retired Minister of Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson and co-founder of the humanitarian groups Tucson Samaritans and No More Deaths. “This season of hope and love for all the world’s religions reminds us that humane, common-sense immigration reform, not militaristic cruelty, is urgently needed to end this humanitarian catastrophe.” During the service, participants will light 123 candles while reciting the names, if known, of 123 migrants whose remains were discovered in Southern Arizona so far in 2018. “We will come together as a community to remember and say the names of just some of those lost due to a heavily militarized border,” said Robin Reineke, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Tucson-based Colibrí Center for Human Rights. “They are unique, irreplaceable human lives, and we refuse to forget them.” Desconocido, Spanish for unknown, will be recited for each unidentified migrant. “A cross will be planted in memory of all the unidentified migrants,” said artist Alvaro Enciso whose Tucson Samaritan project “Where Dreams Die” includes the planting of crosses where remains are found. The remains of more than 2,700 migrants have been recovered since 2001 in Arizona’s Sonoran Desert within the jurisdictional area of the Pima County Office of Medical Examiner. Contact: Alvaro Enciso, (520) 269-5354,


Upaya Hiking Club
Our Sangha is forming a hiking club. We will meet on the 3rd Sunday morning of each month, October through April. The hikes will last about 2 hours, with about 30 minutes dedicated to silent walking, or seated meditation if we find a nice spot to sit. Please check the Upaya calendar or contact Dawn Messer at or text 520-975-4839 for location and exact meeting time.

New Mindfulness Class

Sundays 8 to 9am

Tucson Community Meditation Center

Facilitator: Tim Clark

Mindfullness – A Different Reality

A young girl approaches a fork in the road. Not knowing which path to take she asks a monk sitting nearby for help. The monk asks her where she is going. She replies she doesn’t know. The monk tells her, “Then it doesn’t matter”.

The focus of this class is to discover how all the meditation, mindfulness and present moment pieces fit together, and how to use that knowledge to set up the conditions to know where to go. We will start with twenty minutes of meditation. In the remaining time, we will discuss such things as Mindfulness and Living in the Present Moment; are they the same or are they different? What does living in the Present Moment mean and where does it lead? We will also talk about the power of habit, its ties to Karma and its effect on free will. There will be lots of pictures and a few exercises designed to watch your mind in action.


Help Needed with Organization Tasks

I am looking for someone to help me with various organization tasks. Probably one day a week for four hours. You should speak PC and be XCELlent at Word. The location is near B’Way and Greasewood.

A typical task would be to help me organize a program to teach mindfulness to those with ADHD, MTBI’s and other attention deficit conditions. This would be from a meditation standpoint, not clinical. Also, organizing speaking engagements plus some data entry.

Occasionally lunch will be included.

Tim Clark 664 4090 <>


Finding Goodness in Everyone:  Volunteer Opportunity at Tucson State Prison

My name is Marge Houy, and am currently teaching a new 10-session course in the minimum security unit at the Tucson State Prison on S. Wilmot Road.  Because it has been so well received by the participants and prison staff, I am seeking additional volunteers so that the course can be offered to more inmates.  The course, called The Path of Freedom, was developed by a former federal prison inmate and teaches participants emotional intelligence skills, including self-awareness, self-control and social awareness.

This course is different from others taught in prisons because it also includes meditation training, which is the bedrock for learning the other skills.  This course is currently being taught in prisons and jails in other states including Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Washington State, and Arizona.  I have taught this course in Massachusetts and now in Arizona.  It is hard to describe how appreciative the participants are for the course materials and how personally gratifying it is to work with this under-served population.

I am interested in meeting with anyone who may be interested in learning more about the content of the course, the teacher training process, the nature of ongoing support provided to teachers.  More information about the Path of Freedom course can be found on the Prison Mindfulness Institute’s website at  Please note that there is a $295 tuition fee for the 6-week on-line training with scholarships available for up to half the cost.


Please RSVP to


New Book Club Forming for 2018

This book club will start in 2018 with the topic focus on: “Shamanism, Zen Buddhism, and Deep Ecology – The Early Writings of Roshi Joan Halifax”. (It may take the entire year to complete this topic!)

The initial book club meeting will be March 17 and will cover chapter one of Roshi Joan’s book, The Fruitful Darkness, at Rincon Market at 12:30 to 2 pm. Also more info will be emailed to those who have “signed up” but others are welcome to join this social/educational monthly event.

Interested persons can contact Val Mustain <>.

The recommended reading list for 2018 will be Roshi Joan’s 3 books related to shamanism in this order:

The Fruitful Darkness
Shaman: The Wounded Healer
Shamanic Voices: A Survey of Visionary Narratives

All 3 books are still available on Amazon. (One or more may be out of print, but available used).


Interested in More Regular Longer Sitting Opportunities?

If you are interested in more regular longer (e.g., half-day or full-day) meditation opportunities, and have the space to host a sitting session in your home, please contact Val Mustain <>