Namaste and welcome to the Alegría Dharma Center online! Soon, we hope to welcome you here in person to practice mindfulness and meditation, and to study the teachings of the Buddha. In the meantime, please explore our website to learn more about our vision for this beautiful land overlooking mangroves, mountains, and the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.
“When watching after yourself, you watch after others. When watching after others, you watch after yourself.” — The Buddha
Today, as we are faced with unsustainable population growth, wars, a global struggle for resources, mass migrations, devastating climate change, and increasing income inequality, it is time to find new modes of living that are more mindful, kinder, and that tread more gently on the planet. We must be mindful of our impermanence and our interconnectedness with the earth and all living beings. We are not here forever. Thus we should live with an aware heart and share this space with love, joy, and gratitude to the nature that sustains us. And when we depart, we should leave behind a beauty and abundance that others may enjoy in turn. Buddha emphasized Sangha as a noble means of living; it is the applied middle path. Our modern lifestyles in many of today’s societies are so individual-focused. Alegría is an effort to honor the Buddhist principles of Sangha (community), Ahimsa (non-violence), Samma Kammanta (right action), and Samma Ajiva (right livelihood) through the development of a model Dharma community.
“I envision Alegría as a meditation retreat center and Dharma-living community that nurtures contemplation, revitalization, and growth. Alegría is a peaceful haven where we can support and serve one another - a place where, nestled in the beauty and purity of nature, one can let go of anxieties, stress, fear, and worries, and instead cultivate mindfulness and a tender heart.”
- Venerable Metteyya Sakyputta, our spiritual leader
Alegría welcomes all to contribute, participate, and thrive in living under the five precepts of Buddhism: 1) Abstain from killing living beings, 2) Abstain from taking that which is not given, 3) Abstain from sexual misconduct, 4) Abstain from false speech, 5) Abstain from intoxicating substances that confuse the mind (alcohol and drugs).
This is a haven where people of all ages, from youth to retired seniors, can come to find peace, meditate, improve their wellbeing, learn, and then share the benefits and joy of their efforts through community-focused living.
Meet Our Sangha
Oceans, deserts, mountains, jungles - all environments have special energies.
Indeed we envision a series of meditation centers around the world that harness the natural forces in these rejuvenating spaces. Alegría will be the first of these havens, where you are invited to join our Sangha and delight in the extraordinary beauty of the Pacific Ocean and the surrounding tropical forests and hills of Playa Buena Vista.
Alegría is located in the region of Guanacaste, Costa Rica, on the Nicoya Peninsula. The property overlooks the Pacific Ocean and is surrounded by government-protected mangroves and natural wilderness. These delicate but wild ecosystems host thousands of exotic birds and animals, including four species of sea turtles. From our open meditation and yoga platform, you can watch the sunrise year-round, and in the evening you can walk along the curved beach to see the sunset over the water and bordering cliffs.
Alegría has breathtaking views and awe-inspiring wildlife. In the morning you’ll awake to the sounds of howler monkeys on the property, and hummingbirds will greet you on our café platform. As you sip your fresh, locally grown coffee you may even catch a glimpse of humpback whales in the distance. During late summer and early fall you can witness baby turtles hatch and begin their great journey to the ocean. The natural beauty of Alegría will bring you nothing short of its name – pure joy – inspiration, and serenity.
“As a mother would risk her life to protect her only child, Even so should one cultivate a limitless heart towards all beings” - The Buddha
Metta is an ancient Pali word (the language of the Buddha) meaning loving kindness, friendliness, goodwill towards all beings.
Metta is the guiding principle for all the Metta Family projects including Alegría.
As Alegría becomes self-sufficient and sustainable, its revenues will begin to fund our humanitarian projects in Nepal. The Lumbini Social Service Foundation (LSSF) pioneers schools in rural areas where children would otherwise have no hope of obtaining an education. To break the perpetual cycles of poverty, malnutrition, and discrimination, it also focuses on girls’ and women’s education and empowerment through its girls’ school and women’s liberation center, Karuna Girls School. LSSF also manages a crane sanctuary and environmental conservation project. Finally, LSSF will soon pioneer a comprehensive rural health system to serve 1.6+ million Nepalese with little or no access to medical services, including a hospital and a nursing school. Alegría and all who visit will be supporters and members of this greater Metta family and its compassionate work in the birthplace of the Buddha.