Abode Village View – Month of March

Abode Village View – Month of March

Update from the Abode Board – Sarfaraz Susan Dawdy

I came to be on the Abode Board of Directors because I wanted to support the change in direction that seemed to me to be necessary in order to serve The Message in Our Time — what called us into existence


 In my application to join the Abode Board of Directors, I said:

I am supportive of a/the new direction for the Abode and hope I might bring some clarity and impetus to moving boldly ahead. As much as I am deeply rooted in the teachings of our order— to the extent I understand and embody them— I believe in a creative future for the Abode that well might look, on the surface, nothing like the past.


I am moved by the current work of our Executive Director and our leadership team. They have penetrated to the depth of who we are, what we have to offer. We all will be hearing about the powerful and deep understanding that has resulted from work done during our winter furlough in our meeting on Thursday, March 21. Benchmarks have been researched that help us to “see ourself in another ourself in order to better able to be our self.” (Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan) We are outreaching in ways that create a presence amongst others as we find and create our place in today’s world. We are recognizing the rich resource we have to attract people and organizations —making it possible for others to see themselves in ourselves.

We are turning our face of service toward the call and cry of humanity. We will be able to welcome those who would find us and seek our service as we are no longer going to be too veiled by our esoteric language, which has served us well on the path as we focused on serving ourselves. We will simplify. It is the rich in spirit who can serve meekly.

We are changing our face by leading with our service orientation; while we may look more like a business than we have before, we may well better serve as an outreach of the Message. It is the Message in Our Time that transpires behind what appears.

I am deeply impressed and moved by the labor of our leadership team that is bringing us closer to a capacity to share. We are launching a ship with a deeper keel to turn our vessel into the wind—charting a new tack that serves the Message even better.

‘May your faith increase,’ Murshid’s teacher wished him, so that he could serve the Message against all odds. May ours increase so that we may serve ever more steadfastly in these new times.


“Make yourself different, but not too different.” Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan”



Update from the Executive Director – Al Bellenchia

Dear Friends,


The calendar tells us that, meteorologically, winter has ended. But Jack Frost still has not loosened its grip on Mt. Lebanon. Thankfully, despite the current conditions, spring is inevitable.  It will certainly be welcomed, embraced and celebrated when it does finally arrive.

Each year we face new opportunities and challenges, in addition to those of a more perpetual nature, and need to rise to meet them.  It is as much a pattern as the change of the seasons.

We still must close the gap that we face in our finances. This gap is significant, as it has been for many years. We have made much progress in paring expenses and growing program rental income, but this still does not yet met our need. We will continue to invest in the future of the Abode, prudently and deliberately.  We have made tremendous progress over the past three years and to not continue to invest would effectively consign the Abode to the mists of history.

We will be making some fundamental changes to how the Abode operates and fulfills its mission and purpose: To be a sanctuary for Sufis and Seekers and a diverse community dedicated to living the Message.  To wit:


  • We need to grow in new ways, consistent with our charter and mission, in order to achieve economic sustainability. Simply iterating what we have been in the past will not suffice for the future. We have recently completed a benchmarking and planning process and have identified opportunities to address our challenges.


  • We will be applying our core teachings and practices in new ways and in other forms that will resonate with a broader and more diverse audience who we need to attract to survive. This will require intentionality and commitment in our service to the Message, and to each other, as we evolve further.


  • We are reaching out to build relationships with organizations, groups and individuals who align with the Message, to call them to the Abode for events, retreats, meals and service. This is how we will continue to renew our community: by continually inviting new people here and serving their needs.


We will be holding a community conversation at 7:00 pm on Thursday, March 21 to discuss our plans and actions.  It will be held in Quddus, our Mediation Hall, and we also will Livestream. Details will follow.

We will be closing the Meditation Hall for a time in April, to prepare for and install new carpeting in the hallways and guest rooms. This is a long overdue renovation in our most important space, and part of our effort to provide the most comfortable experience we can to our visitors and guests. The work is tentatively set to occur from April 10-15 or thereabouts. As we finalize the timeline, we will share additional updates on the work schedule. Those who would like to volunteer to help move furniture and remove old carpeting will have an opportunity to do so. As we finalize the timeline, we will share additional updates on the work schedule

Finally, we need to fill several positions in the coming months, and will be posting opportunities on our web site and Basecamp in the near future. We will be looking for Front Desk, Kitchen/Cafe, Housekeeping, Program Support, Mountain and Maintenance staff. Our desire is to hire from within the community if at all possible.

As the month progresses, we will be re-opening and shifting, preparing for the flowering that is ahead.


“The deep roots never doubt spring will come.” – Marty Rubin


Yours in service,


Update from the Abode Inayati Center – Wahida Ashki

Dear Friends and Followers of the Path,


I’m writing to you today to let you know that I have made the difficult decision to withdraw as your Center leader making way for new opportunities for growth and development of our center through the energies of those of you more connected to our center life then I will be in the near future.  We continue to make plans for meaningful and interesting classes, for special events, for example, the meditation retreat which Yaqin will lead on March 16 and our Passover which you’ll hear more about soon. I wish you all blessings now and in the future.


With love,

Wahida Ashki

Abode Weekly Village View

Upcoming Week’s Events

Monday,  March 11

– Community Lunch – Razzaq Dining Hall – 12:30 pm


Tuesday,  March 12

– Community Breakfast – Razzaq Dining Hall – 8:00 am

– Yoga with Chris Holmes – Quddus Meditation Hall – 5:00-6:30 pm – The class is donation-based: $7-15, eggs, homemade stuff, hugs, herbs and herbal products, honey, big smiles, etc etc all accepted!

– Community Dinner – Razzaq Dining Hall – 6:00 pm


Wednesday,  March 13

– Community Lunch – Razzaq Dining Hall – 12:30 pm


Thursday, March 14

– Community Lunch – Razzaq Dining Hall – 12:30 pm

– Community Dinner – Razzaq Dining Hall – 6:00 pm

– Message Class with Atayna– Quddus Meditation Hall – 7:00 pm – This week’s message class is inspired by Hazrat Inayat Khan’s comment, “to the eye of the seer every leaf of the tree is a page of the holy book that contains divine revelation”. Using practices, readings and contemplation, our focus will be on expanding our relationship with nature and opening fully to what it communicates to us. “What I know of the divine sciences and Holy Scriptures, I learned in woods and fields. I have no other masters than the beeches and the oaks”. Saint Bernard of Clairvaux


Saturday, March 16

– Meditation Session on Light with Yaqin – Quddus Meditation Hall – 10:00 AM – Join us for the second of two Meditation Sessions on Light led by Yaqin Aubert. Register for the livestream at www.theabode.org/programs/644. Program begins promptly at 10:00 am and will conclude at 12:30 pm. Price for the livestream and in person event is a donation of $15.


Sunday, March 17

– Universal Worship with Aimée – Quddus Meditation Hall – 11:00 am

– Brunch – Razzaq Dining Hall – 12:30 pm

– Dances of Universal Peace – Razzaq Dining Hall – 1:30-3:00 pm



Upcoming Programs

Yoga with Chris Holmes | Tuesdays | 5:00-6:30 PM | Quddus Meditation Hall | Chris Holmes is a professional anatomist, yoga instructor, and bodyworker. He holds teacher certifications in Kripalu and Kundalini Yoga. The class is donation-based: $7-15, eggs, homemade stuff, hugs, herbs and herbal products, honey, big smiles, etc etc all accepted!


Sufi Message Class | Thursdays | 7:00 PM | Quddus Meditation Hall |  March 14 – Atayna, March 21 & 28 & April 18 – Nur, April 4 & 11 – Shakur, 


Meditation Session on Light with Yaqin | Saturday, March 16 | 10:00 AM-12:30 PM | Quddus Meditation Hall | Join us for the second of two Meditation Sessions on Light led by Yaqin Aubert. We will come together in practices with Light in the body, mind, heart and soul and experience how the realization of light effects our emotions and social situations. An exploration in practices with Light from the classical Sufis, Hazrat Inayat Khan, Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan, and Pir Zia Inayat Khan. Attendance of both sessions is suggested but not mandatory. These sessions will also be livestreamed from the Abode. Livestream information will be sent out before each session. Register for the livestream at www.theabode.org/programs/644. Program begins promptly at 10:00 am and will conclude at 12:30 pm. Price for the livestream and in person event is $15.


Community Conversation| Thursday, March 21 | 7:00 PM | Quddus Meditation Hall


Energy, Presence and Dialogue with Peter | Sunday, March 25 | 2:00-5:00 PM | Razzaq Library


Out of Egypt: A Passover Seder for Everybody led by Pir Netanel Miles-Yépez | Friday, April 19 | 6:00 PM | Razzaq Dining Hall | Pir Netanel Miles-Yépez will lead us for the Abode’s annual Passover Seder. The seder will be by donation.


Holy Weekend Open House | April 19-22 | Join the Abode as we welcome back Pir Netanel Miles-Yépez for an Open House full of activities dedicated to Passover, Easter, and Earth Day. Activities will include a Passover seder led by Pir Netanel, a documentary film screening, a talk on Sufism and Christianity, a cacao ceremony led by Yasha Wagner, and more! Open Houses at the Abode are by donation and you can join us for as much or as little of the weekend as you would like. For more information and registration please visit www.theabode.org/programs/647


Emerald Earth Retreat with Kainat Norton & Muinuddin Smith | May 3-5 | Come to the beauty of the Berkshires within the renewing energy of spring!  In this weekend retreat we will attune to the sacred manuscript of Nature, to seeing with the eyes of Sophia, the creative feminine, the sacred wisdom of the earth, and to alchemical and Ziraat teachings. All are welcome. For more information and registration please visit www.theabode.org/programs/627



Please check our calendar and programs pages for an extended look at upcoming events and happenings. We look forward to being with you soon at the Abode!