10-3-15 Sangha Update

SanghaPicnickers2015

photo by Ken Richard

Sangha Picnickers! What a pleasure to be with so many Bodhisattvas!

"If you have a supportive sangha, it’s easy to nourish your bodhicitta, the seeds of enlightenment. If you don’t have anyone who understands you, who encourages you in the practice of the living dharma, your desire to practice may wither. Your sangha—family, friends, and copractitioners—is the soil, and you are the seed. No matter how vigorous the seed is, if the soil does not provide nourishment, your seed will die. A good sangha is crucial for the practice. Please find a good sangha or help create one. " Thich Nhat Hanh

Dear Friends,

I hope you are well and happy. Thank you to all of you who were able to be with us for the picnic...for contributing your wonderful energy as well as luscious food and great company. It was such a pleasure to be able to get to know your families and pets and see everyone getting to know each other better, singing, running, jumping, kite flying, etc.We have very fertile soil in which to grow and bloom beautifully!  We are so lucky!

This is a reminder that the Clear Heart Sangha will be gathering on Sunday evening at 6 PM at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation the Lily Pads complex on North Road in Peace Dale. We will enjoy a sitting meditation, Eva offer her summary of the next chapter of the Heart of the Buddha's teaching: Discourse on the Great Forty. We will recite the Trainings and share the Dharma. I hope you will be able to be with us.

There will be a Generations Sangha meeting next Saturday at the Westminster Unitarian Church on Kenyon Ave in East Greenwich from 10 AM to 11;30.  It is a sangha for all ages...We meet all together and then we have a program for the children and one for the adults...coming back together for some singing...and from 11:30- noon we share some fellowship and some snacks. I hope that you will be able to be with us.

Please remember that there will be a Day of Mindfulness in West Hartford on Oct 31...for any of you who are able to join us....and if you know of anyone in that area, please let them know. You can get the info and the registration forms at joannefriday.com/calendar. Walking a Path With Heart in a Conflicted World: Featuring a Dharma Talk, a Q&A, and Sitting, Walking and Eating Meditation -Saturday, October 31, 2015. Registration – 9:30 a.m. / DOM – 10 a.m. to 4 pm-

Prayer Request and Update Our own Noelle King's son, Rod had to have emergency appendectomy surgery on the 20th of September. We had put him, Noelle and his wife Marisa  in our prayer circle....then within four days he was back in the hospital for a second surgery to repair a hernia. He is doing well and Noelle writes: "Thank you all for your good thoughts and sangha energy. Here is a heartwarming story from all of this. Rod's amazing and loving co-workers at United Way banded together and donated their own sick days to him so he could recover with pay and not worry about finances. Their kind generosity is inspiring. "

Good News!!! with all of the horrific news we get...I find it important to nourish all of the most wholesome seeds in my consciousness. One way that I find to do this, is to be aware of the wonderful people in the world who are doing great things to help us all. Here are two of them....

In the last update, I shared how hopeful I was feeling due to the Pope's visit....there was also a huge Global Citizen concert in Central Park the day after he left which attracted 60,000 people. There was no admission...to be admitted, you needed to accrue enough points by engaging in some social action on the global citizen.org site. Their main focus is to end extreme poverty in the world by 2030. You can learn more about Hugh Evans, the young man who organized this event below.  It is so encouraging to see these young people who are taking action to make the world a better place. You might enjoy this entertaining interview with him also....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0MXvKkMzsU I have also included more info below about the way they are encouraging young people to take action....if you are young at heart you might also be inspired....

Speaking of inspired, as most of you know...one of my sheroes is Malala, the 18 year old girl..who was shot in the head by the Taliban for promoting education for girls. She is the embodiment of practicing forgiveness and fearlessness. She was advocating for girls education since she was 11. In 2012 the Taliban shot her, she recovered and said that she then had a choice....and since she had faced death...and knew that death was not ready to take her, she would continue her campaign. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 when she was 17 years old...the youngest recipient ever....She began the Malala Foundation and for her 18th birthday opened a school in Lebanon for Syrian refugees. She said she needed to do that to show the world leaders with whom she communicates that if an 18 year old could do it....so could they! A truly remarkable young woman who can give us all hope and inspire us.  You might enjoy this interview with her  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXE7iMPELKU...it will give you a taste of her wisdom, humor..and ....she does card tricks!...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1O2B7Y-fiA  Enjoy!

with much love and a very full and grateful heart, Joanne

About Hugh Evans's projects....taken from Wikipedia The Oaktree Foundation In 2003 Evans, together with Nicolas Mackay established The Oaktree Foundation, an Australian-based non-government organisation that provides aid and development to countries in need across the Asia Pacific and African regions. Oaktree is run by young people aged 16 to 26, overseen by an advisory board, and has since grown into an effective vehicle for youth advocacy in Australia providing for education in developing countries. Evans was the inaugural chief executive officer, standing down in 2008, and continues with Oaktree in an advisory capacity. The Global Poverty Project Inspired by Al Gore's successful film An Inconvenient Truth, Evans and Simon Moss established the Global Poverty Project, a community education group that aims to increase awareness of, and action towards fighting extreme poverty. The Global Poverty Project was started in 2008 with a US$60,000 grant from the United Nations and an A$350,000 grant from AusAID. Included in Evans' activism for the Global Poverty Project is the Make Poverty History campaign and concerts in Australia.

from Wikipedia Malala Yousafzai S.St (Malālah Yūsafzay, Pashto: ‎ [məˈlaːlə jusəf ˈzəj];[1] born 12 July 1997) is a Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate.[4] She is known mainly for human rights advocacy for education and for women in her native Swat Valley in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwaprovince of northwest Pakistan, where the local Taliban had at times banned girls from attending school. Yousafzai's advocacy has since grown into an international movement. Her family runs a chain of schools in the region. In early 2009, when she was 11–12, Yousafzai wrote a blog under a pseudonym for the BBC detailing her life under Taliban occupation, their attempts to take control of the valley, and her views on promoting education for girls in the Swat Valley. The following summer, journalist Adam B. Ellick made a New York Times documentary[3] about her life as the Pakistani military intervened in the region. Yousafzai rose in prominence, giving interviews in print and on television, and she was nominated for the International Children's Peace Prize by South African activist Desmond Tutu. On the afternoon of 9 October 2012, Yousafzai boarded her school bus in the northwest Pakistani district of Swat. A gunman asked for her by name, then pointed a pistol at her and fired three shots. One bullet hit the left side of Yousafzai's forehead, travelled under her skin through the length of her face, and then went into her shoulder.[5] In the days immediately following the attack, she remained unconscious and in critical condition, but later her condition improved enough for her to be sent to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England, for intensive rehabilitation. On 12 October, a group of 50 Islamic clerics in Pakistan issued a fatwāagainst those who tried to kill her, but the Taliban reiterated their intent to kill Yousafzai and her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai. The assassination attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for Yousafzai. Deutsche Welle wrote in January 2013 that Yousafzai may have become "the most famous teenager in the world." United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown launched a UN petition in Yousafzai's name, demanding that all children worldwide be in school by the end of 2015; it helped lead to the ratification of Pakistan's first Right to Education Bill.

The 2013, 2014 and 2015 issues of Time magazine featured Yousafzai as one of "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". She was the winner of Pakistan's first National Youth Peace Prize, and the recipient of the 2013 Sakharov Prize. In July that year, she spoke at the headquarters of the United Nations to call for worldwide access to education, and in October the Government of Canada announced its intention that its parliament confer Honorary Canadian citizenship upon Yousafzai.  In February 2014, she was nominated for the World Children's Prize in Sweden. In May, Yousafzai was granted an honorary doctorate by the University of King's College in Halifax. Later in 2014, Yousafzai was announced as the co-recipient of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, along with Kailash Satyarthi, for her struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education. Aged 17 at the time, Yousafzai became the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate.