Giving service

Dhamma Bhumi

What is the purpose of Dhamma service? Certainly not to receive board and lodging, nor to pass the time in a comfortable environment, nor to escape from the responsibilities of daily life. Dhamma workers know this well.

Lily at Dhamma Bhumi

The above words are from a talk given by Goenkaji at Dhamma Bhumi on Dhamma service. The giving of Dhamma Service, whether in a course or in some other way to help in the spread of Dhamma, is one of the most valuable experiences a student of Vipassana can have. Not only is it rewarding to know that you have helped others to taste the Nectar of Dhamma, but it also is a wonderful source of growth and strength in your own development in meditation practice.

Without the voluntary assistance of old students who feel a volition to give to others a little of what they have received from their participation in Vipassana courses, the courses cannot be arranged and conducted, and the Centres cannot grow or be maintained. Goenkaji has spoken often on the purpose of Dhamma service and teaches that it is an integral part of an old student’s growth and development on this Path. Giving Dhamma service in accordance with the Code of Conduct for Dhamma Workers strengthens a student of Vipassana for living a Dhamma life in the outside world.

How to register

If you can volunteer any amount of your time or your skills, from staying at a centre to serve one or more 10 day courses to an occasional few hours, on or off Centre, please complete an application form that can be accessed from each centre”s course schedule. For some centres, click the ‘Apply’ link next to the course listing. On the following page click ‘Old student’, and on the next page you can select to serve. For other schedule pages, click ‘Yes’ in the ‘Servers needed’ column.

CALM online course application and registration

CALM, the application and registration system, is being installed in a growing number of Centres and countries in Europe, Australia and Asia. There is an international CALM Trust, and a number of committees and work groups have been set up. Decisions are taken by consensus and the committees and work groups execute the work.

CALM is developed and maintained entirely by volunteers. As a result of Calm”s wider acceptance and its increased use there is also a growing need for skilled servers to support it in a variety of ways, from user training & support to programming to system maintenance & testing. View the Dhamma Service page of the Calm web site to see what kind of Dhamma service opportunities are available.

Dhamma servers’ workshops

These one-day workshops provide training for those wishing to serve on courses at Dhamma Bhumi. The program includes:

  • introduction to how the kitchen works
  • lunch preparation
  • centre tour and role of course managers
  • fire hazard reduction.

2014 schedule

  • 9 March
  • 22 June
  • 21 September
  • 7 December


9:00am   Group sitting
10:00am Tea and introductions
10:30am General introductions and centre guidelines
10:45am Role of course manager and centre tour; lunch preparation
12 noon  Lunch
12:45pm  Clean up and kitchen instructions
1:30pm  Group sitting
2:30pm  Kitchen instructions
5:00pm Workshop close

For more information and to register for the workshop, please email or call 02 4787 3600.

Past participants’ comments

“It is a good start to serve and minimises the fear of serving. Servers will not feel lost especially when kitchen gets busy and the coordinator is not around to lend a hand.”

“Informative. It makes me feel confident in serving in future.”

“Very reassuring. Covers so many aspects of serving such as tips on time-saving that allow servers more time to meditate. Tour of the site was really informative for me.”