23 DAYS TO THE START OF THE RETREAT
So far we have issued 60 tickets and raised well over £1500 for the India Project. Well done !
The event is sponsored by
- Amida Shu: http://www.amidashu.org/ and
- ITZI Conference: https://www.facebook.com/ITZIconference
as from yesterday, there is also a new group at La Ville au Roi (Eleusis) that you can join: https://eleusis.ning.com/group/global-sangha
to gather materials related to the event and to promote the ideal of Global Sangha.
PROGRAMME INFORMATION UPDATES
Attached is the latest draft of the programme. We have started to add descriptions of presentations. If you are a presenter you may wish to send me material to add to this section so that retreat attenders know what your event is all about.
There are three dozen presenters and more than sixty events in the retreat. If you are a presenter and would like to discuss with me how to make your item more interactive and engaging or if you have anxieties about using zoom or you have any other concerns about your item, do get in touch with me. I will reach out to some individuals to make sure all is well, but any presenter is welcome to contact me for a chat. We want to make the retreat flow in a pleasing way that involves everybody and makes the best possible impression, inspiring attenders to go forth and take global sangha into their lives and into the world.
The retreat includes ceremonies for
- taking refuge: the first step on the Buddhist path
- taking the 10 Mahayana precepts
- those entering the Amida Shu
- those entering the Amida Order
- the investiture of a new Dharma teacher.
All are welcome to take refuge. If you have other aspirations, please get in touch to discuss ways forward. All are welcome to attend the ceremonies as witnesses.
LARGER PURE LAND SUTRA RECITATION
7.00 Rome Thursday 10th and Friday 11th December
The Larger Pure Land Sutra Recitation Practice is a traditional Amida Sangha practice that has often been followed by those living in community, as part of a more monastic training schedule. The practice can, of course, be undertaken by anybody with an interest and can have great benefits.
The Larger Pure Land Sutra is considered the most important Pureland Buddhist text, the means by which we hear the most, out of all Shakyamuni’s teachings, about Amida Buddha. It follows the story of how Dharmakara, a well revered and prestigious ruler, in an undisclosed time and place, encounters a Buddha and is inspired to make vows that elevate him to ultimate Buddhahood, enabling ordinary beings to reach and find salvation in him, despite their ignorance, transgressions and dark karma. This sutra is where we hear the 48 great vows that Dharmakara took in order to manifest his Pure Land, Sukhavati, The Land of Bliss.
The practice is performed in two sessions, as the Sutra is divided into two main parts. We chant the words of the Sutra in synchrony and at a faster than usual pace, in order that the meaning is more absorbed into the deeper levels of the mind rather than filtered by the rational mind and therefore is inscribed into our hearts forever.
It usually takes about 30-40 minutes to complete half of the text and in this case, for the purpose of the Bodhi Retreat event, we will be doing the 2 sections on two consecutive mornings, beginning and ending the practice with a few minutes silence. We will ask that people keep their microphones muted so myself (Rev. Dayamay) and Rev. Jnanamati can concentrate on staying in synch with each other, which can be challenging on the Zoom platform. We think it is important to preserve the purity of this practice and, so, to minimize discussion or interruptions, which can be kept for other occasions. We look forward to seeing you there. Namo Amida Bu, Rev. Dayamay.
108 PODCASTS TRANSCRIBED
The whole series of 108 five minute podcasts has been transcribed. All have been also translated into Spanish and many into Italian, French, Dutch or German. The index is at
Carol Corey writes:
"I thought you'd be interested in this article by Roshi Robert Althouse about Dharmavidya's "Dark Side of the Mirror" -- the book that changed my life!
And Satya Robyn appeared in the winter edition of BuddhaDharma magazine, under their "Ask the Teachers' section. That article hasn't appeared online yet. I'll watch for it. Hope this is a trend."
The Dark Side of the Mirror: Forgetting the self in Dogen's Genjo Koan.
Dogen's writing emphasises that enlightenment is not something one can obtain, but is rather a state in which one naturally reflects the light of the Dharma into the world when one's ego has ceased to shine. A mirror is bright on one side because it is dark on the other.
Namo Amida Bu