Meditation Oasis in Downtown Longmont

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Est. Reading Time: 3 minutes

Five years ago, Cliff Clusin realised that his space at 10th and Kimbark Street, where people gathered for meditation, yoga and other contemplative pursuits was not working out too well.  With residential quarters above, the room was not effectively soundproofed and active five-year olds were not conducive to quiet, reflective periods.

When a realtor suggested an alternative place on Main Street, Clusin was not initially impressed, but soon changed his mind. 

The space used to be a hardware store, and there were still storage numbers formed by tiny nails on the floor.  Access was from the rear alley, is convenient for parking in the Municipal lots to the east.  Best of all, there was nothing above number 324 Main Street and the space was surprisingly quiet.

So a lease was signed, bathrooms were updated and a cosy kitchen for tea and snacks added. Two small, adjoining rooms are used for storage and for one-on-one sessions, and the large, high skylight in the main room provides plenty of natural, soft light. The Meditation Place was ready to go.

The Meditation Place, Photo: Lisa Trank

So what is The Meditation Place? 

Clusin describes it as a community space with a contemplative bent. And he describes meditation as “the landscape of the present moment”, and he guides newcomers to understand meditation as a natural activity that can be developed with care and practice.

It can also be rented for other events and activities, as well as the classes and sessions described on the website http://www.themeditationplace.org/.  In addition to the regular hour-long meditation sessions on Monday and Wednesday at 5:30, Clusin offers an introduction to meditation class for individuals or small groups. 

Introduction to Meditation, Photo: Lisa Trank

Other meditation classes are offered in various alternative traditions – Tibetan, Shambhala, Lotus Blossom – and newcomers are always very welcome, with instruction offered when required. Some classes are funded by donation, while others require a subscription.

In addition to classes in the more familiar eastern practices of yoga and t’ai chi, other methods to help with relaxation and mindfulness are available at The Meditation Place. The vibrations produced by Crystal Singing Bowls create an opportunity for relaxation and subtle shifts in the psyche, while private sessions in the Alexander Technique are another offering. The Shambhala Meditation Group even has a monthly book group meeting, as well as regular classes.

And how did Clusin, a self-described “natural born accountant” who has built a career working with various non-profit organizations, start to meditate and make it such a major part of his life? 

He was a runner in his youth and discovered meditation at the age of 21. He found that meditation was akin to the solitude and peace he experienced while running alone in the Colorado mountains.  He still maintains that the tranquility of being alone in nature brings similar benefits to those of meditation. 

Clusin regrets the reliance today on being in constant contact with others through the use of mobile devices and the Internet.  He likes to remind people of Frank Lloyd Wright, who said of technology in 1955 “If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger.”

Cliff Clusin at the Meditation Place, Photo: Lisa Trank

So can this peaceful oasis in the heart of a Longmont that is getting busier by the day help us all stay calm and stress-free? 

Cliff Clusin certainly believes so.  Although it may sound counter-intuitive,
Clusin knows from long experience that meditating in a small, supportive group is easier than struggling on one’s own, where household and family distractions are all too likely to creep into the mind. And he is happy to share his knowledge.

For more information about the Meditation Place at 324 Main Street (alley entrance), contact  Cliff at cliff@prairiemountain.org or (303)246-833, and check out the website at www.themeditationplace.org.


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