Giving |
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Generosity gladdens the heart & opens the mind



“Even if a person throws the rinsings of a bowl or a cup into a village pool or pond, thinking, ‘May whatever animals live here feed on this,’ that would be a source of merit.”

– the Buddha (in the Anguttara Nikaya)

The Buddha taught that generosity (dana) is the first of the perfections of bodhisattvas. Generosity brings happiness at every stage of its expression. We experience joy in forming the intention to be generous, in the actual act of giving, and in remembering the fact that we have given. At Urban Dharma, although you might see that we request “suggested donations” for programs, we adhere to more than 2500 years of Buddhist tradition of offering our programs on a generosity/dana basis: no one is ever turned away for any of our programs due to lack of funds. Although financially daring for a center, this choice provides you an excellent vehicle for the practice of generosity, which may be expressed by monetary contributions and/or by volunteering. By giving a one-time donation, becoming a Sustaining Member or Temple Volunteer, or offering a Planned Gift, you help maintain Urban Dharma’s environment of openness, in which everyone has the opportunity to receive the Buddha’s life-transforming teachings. You also enable Urban Dharma Temple to keep its doors open six days a week to all who need sanctuary. Every donation is greatly appreciated and adds a grain of sand to the mandala that continuously unfolds as a sacred space created for the benefit of all beings. Sustaining Members are the financial lifeblood of Urban Dharma, providing reliable monthly income so we can continue to give the gift of Dharma to all. To learn more about becoming a Sustaining Member or Temple Volunteer, or about Planned Giving, scroll down below.


One-Time Donation

For your convenience, click the yellow Donate button below. The button will take you to the PayPal platform, you do not need a PayPal account to make this donation. This donation portal can be used for one-time or monthly donations for:

  1. General support Urban Dharma
  2. Participation in a specific program
  3. Dana to Dr. Lye directly
  4. Support for the More Curry, Less Worry program  

If you prefer to write us a check, that is great. In fact, this will maximize your giving since we do not have to pay any fees for accepting check donations. Make your check out to: Urban Dharma NC. Mail it to PO Box 19432 Asheville, NC 28815.

Sustaining Membership

Sustaining members pledge a fixed dollar amount to Urban Dharma each month. Urban Dharma relies on this monthly support not only for such day-to-day expenses as rent and utilities but also for such special program costs as travel, accommodations, and meal expenses for out-of-town teachers. We adhere to the 2500-year-old Buddhist tradition of offering our programs on a dana or generosity basis rather than charging a set fee.  All our “suggested donations” are just that – suggested. This practice lets participants decide for themselves the value of teachings received, make their offering, and practice generosity without regret. Yet over and above these occasional offerings, our ongoing work of teaching Dharma vitally depends upon the monthly gifts we receive from sustaining members. These gifts provide a secure foundation that allows us to plan our future programs and activities with more confidence. Benefits of Becoming a Sustaining Member Members-only special events, private gatherings with visiting teachers, benefactors e-newsletter, and more. Most of all, knowing that your pledged monthly donation will work towards keeping Urban Dharma, its programs, and offerings to the public open and available to the entire local as well as global community. If you are interested in becoming a sustaining member, please use the Donate button above to set up a recurring donation.

Volunteer Opportunities

Besides your financial support, we value and need your help in carrying out current projects and planning future ones. If you’d like to help out with any of the items listed or have something else to offer, email Please call or text Lawrence (Urban Dharma’s Volunteer Coordinator) at (203) 984-5111 if you would like to volunteer to keep the temple open.
Below are just some of the ways in which you can help sustain our mission:

  • Volunteer as a weekly temple staff
  • Help clean the temple
  • Help provide flower arrangements for the Temple
  • Donate tea candles
  • Assist with special events
  • Help design brochures and promotional items
  • Advertise our programs
  • Help with the production of informational materials for distribution
  • Help with audio and video production and distribution
  • Promote our mission and help with fundraising


Planned Giving

Is a wonderful way to make a lasting and meaningful contribution to supporting Urban Dharma in the long term. Your gift will ensure that we continue to contribute to our local community and beyond. Planned Giving creates a financial or estate plan in which you formally decide to give something of value to Urban Dharma at a future date. Your future gift can be cash, property, or other assets. Often, a lawyer and/or an accountant is involved in this. Please contact us at if you are interested in this form of giving.