Consultation about building a Buddhist center — need your kind help

I am thinking about initiating a Buddhist center.

The core vision is to create a center that:

  • Follows the Theravada Thai Forest’s strict tradition’s philosophy
  • Follows a big part of the Vinaya (the non-repetitive, non-discriminative).
  • Secular. No worship, no statues, no devas, no chanting, etc.
  • Daily training routine of studying, working, and practicing
  • Open freely to the public at almost any time
  • Accepts everyone altogether: straight, LGBTQ, black, white, woman, man, etc.
  • Close to a metropolitan

Which aims to be a hybridization of a Monastery and a Center. One that takes seriously education and practice while maintaining its availability to all people at all times.


  1. What do you think about the idea? Do you have any hard questions to tackle me with?
  2. Do you think there should also be a residential place? It is not an easy call because a residential place requires much more finances, space, accommodation, a kitchen, bathrooms, infrastructure, the ability to resolve conflicts between residents, approvals, and, generally, much more work. The advantage is, of course, that it allows people to come for two weeks, to deepen much more their practice (which is the main goal of the center), and to allow a continuous stream of volunteers to help in the center.
  3. Two things are needed for this to happen: Initial resources and Continuous resources. The initial main resources are land and construction, or already-made buildings. The continuous resources are electricity, taxes, and insurance. Everything is, of course, dependent on the answer to question 2.
    1. For the initial resources, I thought about crowdfunding, but unfortunately, I don’t believe that it will be possible to generate enough finances like that. I thought about approaching municipalities with this idea and having them invest in it. I also thought about approaching big charities or big donors to get the initial resources from them. Moreover, I thought about approaching landowners and asking them to use the land or buy it cheaply. What do you think about those ideas? Do you have another approach for that?
    2. For continuous resources, I thought about utilizing crowdfunding and platforms like Patreon. It may work, but it has a lot of fluctuations, which can create uncertainty about the future of the center at any given time. I don’t want the center to consume money from people, but maybe there can be some business model for it to keep it financially stable. What do you think? Do you have any ideas?
  4. As I currently live in Spain (relocated three months ago) and see the lack of a center like this here and the need for it, I aim to construct one here. What do you think about that? Do you have suggestions for other places, maybe more suitable for this?

I would love to hear what you think, and I would love to be approached by people who can help!

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I’m so happy to hear of your noble intentions.
While reading your post I could only think about Vipassana Meditation as taught by S.N. Goenka. He had the same idea but 50 years earlier. :wink:
There are two meditation centers in Spain: one near Barcelona and the other close to Madrid.
I believe this are similar to what you dream of. Please consider attending a 10 day retreat. This courses are done in complete silence and isolated from the external world and all distractions.
The courses are completely free, financed by donations from earlier students that feel grateful for what they learned and who wish others have the same opportunity. Once you have completed a 10 day course you are considered an “old student” and you can visit any center in the world (currently around 200) for any length of time and help the wheel of Dhamma to keep turning.
I’m certain that this organization checks all the boxes you mentioned and they have already solved somewhat these problems.
Thanks for your volition.

More information at:

But be very careful, because people sometimes lose their mind quite literally after these retreats. Ten days of pure meditation can be very dangerous, especially if the organisators have no idea what they are doing (and they often do).


There’s also this project in Spain that’s being built up: Home | Sarana Vihara

It’s initiated by a nun who originally ordained as a Sayalay in the Burmese tradition and is now a Samaneri.


Thank you very much for you reply. I will dig deeper into it. Great response.

Interesting. What do you mean “lose their minds”?

Great. Thank you very much for the refer! Will check it out.
Any comments about my presented idea?

Depression, psychosis, other psychiatrical troubles.
At least one known case of suicide.

Welcome. Such a compassionate idea. Financing is the big question and I’m pondering it too. A meditation center in the U.S. is a distant “dream” for me. So far, the ideal would be like those old-fashioned, single story motels all in a row and made of concrete for noise insulation. Each one would have its own door to exit outside, a small table for a tea kettle and a bathroom. One room, one yogi. Centrally controlled climate for comfort. Doesn’t have to be a large room, maybe 10 x 9 plus the bathroom. One single bed.

Out of the way of major traffic, airports, raceways (yes :sweat_smile:) and donkeys (don’t ask) :joy: in a state that is tolerant of difference.

The outside walkway would be covered and there would be sand walk ways for meditation.
Some rooms to be long -term retreat rooms (6 months to 3 years), ideally one strip of rooms apart from the shorter term yogis ( 2 weeks to a couple of months). This would be a women’s only meditation center, including trans women, monastic women, regardless of religion, language, ethnicity, etc. Instruction for the beginning yogis. Women need a place like this. Everyone on at least 8 precepts. Financial support would be imperative for initial and long term operation. There would be a need for a lay steward to handle the finances. Charge would be sliding scale for lay persons and without charge for monastics (Buddhist, Catholic, whatever) Will be open for donations someday :slight_smile: :pray:t2: :heart:
Best wishes for your plans, may they meet with fortunate circumstances.