A new ritual
A new ritual is developing here at Eleusis. Breakfast seems an excellent time of the day for a some lessons. Today's lesson was about the history of how Buddhism developed as a religion. My notes reflect a time line from 500 BC, the life of Shakyamuni Buddha, up to 1100 AC, the life of Honen.
In the afternoon we went to the woods. For several days we have had a retreat guest at Eleusis, 'the little man'. He spent all his time in the kitchen meditating in a very disciplined way. So we thought he deserved a special sacred place in the woods. So today we went out to find a good spot for him.We found a beautiful little zendo for him at the foot of the old oak near the retreat hut. The retreat hut is a small hut in the woods, where you can spent time in complete solitude. A perfect place for 'the little man'. As I was looking at him in his new 'home', suddenly, the light through the branches of the oak seems to shine brighter. “You are a real deva,” I thought when I looked at him.
Devas and sacred ground
I did not know about devas until I read about them in some Buddhist texts. A couple of days ago when I had my first lesson about Buddhist psychology and the five skandhas we talked about devas. Some devas are inhabitants of sacred places, a kind of good spirits who are filling a space with sacred energy.
Do you know the feeling when you enter a little church, a zendo, or a temple and automatically you become quiet and more gentle in the way you move? You immediately have this feeling you are entering sacred ground? I think a lot of us recognise this kind of experience. How come?
Of course, there are lots of possible reasons. But yes... devas... inhabitants of sacred places who influence and change the energy in buildings and places... I like that. I feel attracted to the devas. I am convinced that the woods of Eleusis have a lot of mysterious inhabitants.
I like this old oak near the retreat hut. I have written about him before. This oak is very special. He is standing there as the friendly old giant. I am quiet sure he is surrounded by invisible deva's. I can sense them. And the oak himself is creating a sacred atmosphere too.
It must be nice when you are completely alone and sitting on the ground near the hut and you suddenly discover the 'little man deva' - the only visible deva for the eye. I think this deva will give you a big smile on your face and who knows, he may open your eyes to the other devas around you too.
Oja, leuk Karin! Kom maar gauw een bezoek brengen aan de 'little man- deva' op Eleusis! Heel goed idee :-)
Elja Stoel said:
Ha Karin, dank voor je leuke reactie. En heb je devas ontmoet? David is om 20.00 aangekomen in Den Bosch. Grote verkeersopstopping rond Antwerpen. Hij heeft er 6 uur over gedaan... We zijn nu sinds 20 minuten in Valkenburg....
Karin Verhaest said:
Hi Elja! Your entry really inspired me, I notice I started looking for devas in all the places I came that day.. There is something very sweet also about this deva. I hope to visit him soon!