The Canmore Theravada Buddhist Community (CTBC) grew out of what was originally called the Bow Valley Sangha meditation group. Sanghamitta (Mary Dumka) started this Theravada Forest Tradition mediation group in 1994, and has hosted it weekly and then twice weekly since that time.
In 2016, the group's name was changed to the CTBC Meditation Group because we learned that "sangha" refers to monastic communities, or to the group of enlightened beings, but not to lay meditation groups.
The CTBC organization itself, run by a volunteer board, was created in 2014 because Sanghamitta wished to see the teachings of this tradition continue to be easily available in the Bow Valley. To this end, she has offered her home to become a vihara (monastic residence) for Theravada monastics, under the auspices of the CTBC. This became a reality June 1, 2020. For six months Ajahn Subharo was in residence. From April 20, 2022 until July 14, 2022 Ayya Brahmavara was in residence. Ayya Ahimsa will join us as our Resident Nun on December 11, 2022.
CTBC's main goal is to spread the Dhamma, the teachings of the Buddha, by providing a space to practice meditation and to hear the teachings. The teachings are often best provided by Buddhist monastics: nuns and monks. They have a dedicated practice, so can teach us from their direct experience rather than from theoretical knowledge. To this end, CTBC's long term goal, to be realized December 2011, is to provide a living space for Buddhist monastics. As a community, we will support them in their practice and they will provide us with teachings.