9-29-16 Sangha Update


All things are connected like the blood that unites us, We did not weave the web of life. We are merely a strand in it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.  - Chief Seattle
“In a real sense all life is inter-related. All men are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be...
This is the inter-related structure of reality.”
Dr. Martin Luther King
A human being is part of the whole, called by us “universe,” limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a prison, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons close to us.
Our task must be to free ourselves from our prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all humanity and the whole of nature in its beauty.
Dear Friends,
I hope you are well, enjoying the coming on of autumn and widening your circle of compassion. . 
It is very freeing to be able to recognize our state of interconnection with everyone and everything, in the midst of this political season, it is easy to get pulled into a dualistic way of thinking - painting everyone as them or us. It is important to not allow others...no matter what their beliefs, to strengthen the seeds of hatred and anger in us. 
This is a reminder that there will be a gathering this coming Sunday at 6 PM at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of South County. Clare has sent us this...."This Sunday, we will continue our study and practice of the teachings in Creating True Peace. We will start up with a description of the Five Touchings of the Earth. This is an essential practice within our tradition so we will be focusing on that entirely this Sunday start at 6 pm. Looking forward to seeing everyone there.
Also, I continue to accept names of people who want to carpool to Blue Cliff for the retreat taking place October 21
With joy,
We are living in challenging times. I have a friend in Charlotte, NC who's biracial son is a policeman who has been getting rocks thrown at him. (Please hold all those involved in your prayers.) At the same time that racism is being demonstrated in our country and riots are resulting from ages of injustice, we had the opening of the National Museum of African American History. https://nmaahc.si.edu  (wonderful website) to help raise our  awareness.  We are all being called upon to wake up and deepen our understanding, and look at ourselves and to see how we might be of help. 
It looks like there is a wonderful opportunity to do that coming up as an online 3 part course that you might like to check out. I have included the info below. This information was shared by our friend from the Boston Sangha, Janey Gilman (thank you Janey!)
There is also a series of lectures being offered again this year for the Honors Colloquium at URI with the focus being Inequality. The lectures are at 7 PM on Tuesdays. You can check the website for more info at http://web.uri.edu/hc/
The Senexet Retreat - Being an Island of Peace in a Stormy Sea: Practices for creating peace in a chaotic world  will be happening from Oct 14-16. A wonderful time and place to deepen our practice and be peace. You can find information and registration forms at joannefriday.com/calendar
The Contemplative Studies Initiative at Brown University proudly introduces it's Fall 2016 Lecture Series:  "Mindfulness, Science and Society."  Please join us for these exciting lectures and please advertise them to your classes and your mailing lists. These are, in most cases, once in a lifetime opportunities to hear these distinguished scholars and researchers.  
Please continue to hold our own dear Adria in your prayers and in your hearts . We were so happy to hear that the surgery was a success...it seems that it was the best possible outcome, but the recovery will be a long process.You can send her love at adria@uri.edu. If you can help please contact Clare at clare2sartori@gmail.com
If you would like to be a part of the Clear Heart googlegroup so that you can correspond directly with other Sangha members, please contact Cindy at westnest5@verizon.net
So we are confronted with many wonderful opportunities to deepen our practice, our understanding and become more and more able to be peace. We are so blessed!
I hope you will be able to take part in one or more of the above...and enjoy every moment until then.
with love and the deep peace of three conscious breaths for you,
"Dear friends,  in conversations and sharing with many of my sangha siblings over the years, I hear the yearning to be agents for justice and equality for everyone. Some of us feel quite stumped at the amount of pain we feel concerning negative stereotypes. And while we may want to be part of the solution we recognize that our own privilege is a stumbling block. 
So I'm writing to let you know that the organization, White Awake, will hold an on-line seminar that looks wonderful. The organizers of WA are aligned with our sangha aspirations and some of them practice in our tradition. Also they are marvelous presenters and the on-line materials are terrific. you might enjoy googling you way around the website & getting a sense of their work. Smiles, Janey  "