A Meditation Center in the Theravada Buddhist Tradition


Where & When

Members’ Homes: Around 1988, Joan Granger sent a letter to people in the Albuquerque area who were on the Insight Meditation Society mailing list, inviting them to join her in starting a vipassana sitting group. Five people came to the first meeting. Three of those continued to meet. They formed a sangha and met in Joan’s house on Sunday evenings. The sangha announced its meetings in the IMS newsletter. More people showed up. Meetings rotated among members’ homes. As many as 15 people might crowd into someone’s living room. The group usually sat and then listened to a taped dharma talk, took turns reading aloud from a book or had a discussion. The sangha met in members’ homes, on Sunday evenings, for approximately nine years.

Unitarian Church: In 1997, Eric Kolvig moved to Santa Fe and became the teacher for both the Santa Fe and Albuquerque sanghas. The group met Thursday evenings in a large room at the Unitarian Church.

Adelante: In January 1999, when the Unitarians needed to reclaim their meeting room during a remodeling project, sangha member Mike Kivitz, director of Adelante Development Center, graciously allowed the group to meet at the Adelante headquarters on Balloon Park Road. The sangha met there on Thursday nights for approximately two years.

Nahalot Shalom: In 2001, after the sangha outgrew the meeting room at Adelante, the group moved to Nahalot Shalom, a synagogue on Rio Grande Boulevard, and met there for nine months.

The Wat: In 2002, the monks at Wat Buddhasothorn, 145 Madison NE, generously allowed the sangha to use their temple for Thursday evening gatherings.

Bhava Yoga Studio: In November, 2009, the sangha added Sunday evening gatherings at Bhava Yoga Studio on Central Avenue.

Home of Our Own: In January, 2014, the sangha rented space at Rosemont Center, 200 Rosemont NE. All activities, including Thursday and Sunday evening gatherings, non-residential retreats, meetings, study groups, individual practice discussions and social gatherings came together in one place. The sangha also added weekday morning sits and weekend half-day sits.


Thursday evening gatherings began in 1997.

Sunday evening gatherings began in November, 2009. A sangha member who attended UNM could not attend on Thursday evenings because of classes and took the initiative to find a place to meet on Sunday.

Groups within the sangha have formed and dissolved. Groups include a diversity study group (date unknown), a women’s support group (early 2000s), Consensus Collective (2002-2003), a sutta study group (2004), a one-time “World Café” (2007), an engaged Buddhism study group (2010), a metta study group (2011), and a Dancing With Life group (2012). The sangha has held fundraising events beginning with the first documented sangha potluck and yard sale in 1998, the proceeds of which went to the teacher, Eric Kolvig. A silent auction in 1996 helped support visiting teachers. In 2010 and 2011, members hosted brunches to raise funds for the support of Kathryn Turnipseed, who was part of the Spirit Rock Meditation Center Community Dharma Leader Program.


Eric Kolvig

Eric Kolvig

Eric Kolvig: During the years 1997 through 1999, Eric was the resident teacher for the Santa Fe and Albuquerque sanghas and joined the sangha on Thursday evenings about twice a month. From 2005 through 2010, he traveled to Albuquerque about once a month to give a dharma talk.

Shaila Catherine: Shaila was resident teacher for the Santa Fe and Albuquerque sanghas from September 2001 through July 2003. She joined the sangha on Thursday evenings about twice a month.

 Name Change

In December, 2016, the board voted to change our name from Albuquerque Vipassana Sangha to Albuquerque Insight Meditation Center.

Non-Profit Corporation

In June 1999, Albuquerque Vipassana Sangha received its official Certificate of Incorporation from the State of New Mexico. In June 2000, the organization received tax-exempt status from the IRS. Contributions to Albuquerque Vipassana Sangha are tax deductible.

Web Site


Home Page 3-6-13

The sangha web site was created by Wynette Richards in January or February 1997. The web address, for nearly four years, was the unwieldy http://www.cs.unm.edu/~richards/sangha. The UNM Computer Science Department graciously let the group run the website from their server. The group did so until February 2009. In September 2000, the group got its own domain name, abqsangha.org. In March 2013, the group launched a new web site designed by Maxcreative LLC. The domain name was changed to abqinsight.org in 2017.