Sangha is about sitting in practice with others who can see through your delusions, your layers, the stories you have been telling yourself, who can reach past your ego and share wisdom in helping you to move to that same place of wisdom. Sangha is about you sharing your wisdom and cutting through the layers of others and supporting them to see their own authenticity without judgement or expectation.
In western terms coming together as a community or sangha takes many forms. We often see support groups such as youth groups, church groups, school groups or business networks. Other more specific sangha examples are alcoholics anonymous, cancer networks and various charity organisations. Without diluting the original intention of what Buddha had in mind, Sangha in Western society is the core connection of people coming together for purpose of making up the whole their own lives.
In short I see Sangha is sitting with like-minded people who see through your bullshit and call you out on it. These friends keep you accountable for remaining truthful while you keep them accountable for their truth. Sangha could be considered the place of meeting authenticity within one’s self. The coming home; the bringing together of oneness; the making whole of the individual through community without the societal expectations of conforming.
Through Yoga I like to think I am creating Sangha. It is one of the reasons I do my best to keep my classes affordable. I dream of an inclusive class where we all practice our own individual asanas, we connect with our own bodies and move in a way that embodies our own authenticity. In yoga we connect with ourselves, in Sangha we connect with others while staying true to ourselves.
A View on Buddhism, viewed 11/05/2015 http://viewonbuddhism.org/sangha_monks_nuns.html
O’Brien, B, Taking Refuge: Becoming a Buddhist n.d. viewed 11/05/2015 http://buddhism.about.com/od/takingrefuge/a/takingrefuge.htm