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Times & Dates | Frequently Asked Questions | Meet the Teachers


Join us for our new Weekly Meditation at the library!


In cooperation with local teachers, we will offer a led meditation twice a week at the following times:


Mondays @ 6:00 – 6:45 PM


Wednesdays @ 12:15 – 1 PM


Check our Events Calendar for cancellations or room changes.


See our May - August 2017 Schedule to see who's leading each sit. Please note that this schedule is subject to change.


Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of meditation can I expect?


+ This program is a collaboration between the library and local practitioners. The format of the meditation will change based on the teacher. See descriptions below.


Do I need to have prior experience? Do I need to register?


+ No. These sessions will be drop-in, and appropriate for all levels of experience. Our volunteers have introduced many new people to the practice of meditation.


Should I eat before I come?


+ We recommend not eating a large or heavy meal just before meditation.


Do I need special clothing?


+ Comfortable, non-restrictive clothing is best. You will be sitting or walking for up to 45 minutes.


Will I be meditating on a cushion or in a chair?


+ At the moment, the library is only able to offer chairs for meditation. Feel free to bring your own cushion – but this is not necessary.


About the Volunteer Teachers

The Portsmouth Buddhist Center, located on Pleasant Street, offers introductory and regular meditation and Buddhism classes by donation. As ordained members of the Triratna Buddhist Order, teachers from the center, including Dh. Suddhayu, Dh. Candradasa, and Dh. Rijupatha have been practicing and teaching meditation for decades. They will teach two ancient practices: the mindfulness of breathing, and the cultivation of loving-kindness. Both practices are utilized to develop concentration, tranquility and positive emotion.


Avi Magidoff belongs to the 43rd generation of the LinJi Meditation School, and has been a student of Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh for more than two decades. He practices acupuncture in Portsmouth, teaching mindfulness, meditation and acupuncture in North America, Europe and Asia. Avi says: “In each session we practice sitting meditation as well as walking meditation for calming the mind as well as developing, concentrating and observing our habitual patterns so as to gain insight and free ourselves of those patterns. We shall then extend the space created within ourselves to daily life through telephone meditation, eating meditation, etc.”


Cathy Okhuysen will lead contemporary and traditional chants from different traditions as a way to center and focus before and during meditation. Cathy has offered contemplative singing in a variety of public spaces, sacred places and retreats settings.


Suzanne Woodland has been leading meditation at her workplace for 10 years and has led meditation at the Aryaloka Buddhist Center in Newmarket and the Portsmouth Buddhist Center. Her emphasis is on the breathing body as the object of mindful attention, tender awareness. You will be invited to arrive in, explore and make peace with the breathing body and what arises in that process of being present.


Liz Korabek-Emerson is a certified mindfulness instructor, experiential workshop leader and a member of the Brunswick-Portland Shambhala Meditation Center. She is committed to helping people to become more resilient through the practice of mindfulness. Drawing from contemporary science and the wisdom traditions, her programs are designed to be creative, accessible and practical. She will offer a simple mindfulness practice focusing on the breath, walking meditation and contemplation.


Jerry Mayfield teaches Sahaja Yoga, a unique method of meditation developed by H.H. Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi and based on an experience called Self Realization that can occur within each human being. Through this process an inner transformation takes place by which one becomes balanced and integrated mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. Sahaja Yoga does not require physical exercise and no previous experience is necessary. For eighteen years Mayfield has shared Sahaja Yoga in universities, libraries, prisons, drug and alcohol rehabilitation facilities, community centers, street fairs and a mid-town Manhattan elevator stuck between floors. He regularly leads classes for Adult Education in Maine.


Martha (Omshanti) Gleason teaches in the Ananda tradition, a form of yogic meditation. Ananda’s primary goal is to help people achieve Self-realization, a state of consciousness that comes through shedding all outward self-definitions.

Trish Magyari is an experienced meditation and mindfulness teacher who is trained in mindfulness-based stress release and compassion-based counseling, currently working on a book about mindfulness meditation and traumatic stress. She led a weekly drop-in group in Baltimore for ten years, and has taught in many secular settings including schools, universities, hospitals and book stores.


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Portsmouth Public Library
175 Parrott Ave | Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03801
Tel: 603-427-1540 - Fax: 603-433-0981
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