12-3-16 Sangha Update

sky-on-fire

The sky is above,
The earth is below
and the world is always turning toward the morning!
 
Thich Nhat Hanh and Gordon Bok
 
“However mean your life is, meet it and live it; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest. The fault-finder will find faults even in paradise. Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poorhouse. The setting sun is reflected from the windows of the almshouse as brightly as from the rich man's abode; the snow melts before its door as early in the spring. I do not see but a quiet mind may live as contentedly there, and have as cheering thoughts, as in a palace.” ― Henry David ThoreauWalden
“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage,
 you can't practice any other virtue consistently.” ― Maya Angelou
“Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness.
Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.”
 
Dear Friends,
 
I hope you are all well and happy and courageous....looking forward to tomorrow!
 
Speaking about tomorrow, we will be able to come together tomorrow evening at 6 PMat the UU Congregation of South County at the Lily Pads Complex in Peace Dale. Clare will facilitate a sitting meditation, we will continue to look at Thay's book on "Creating True Peace", we will share the Dharma and enjoy a recitation of the Five Mindfulness Trainings. I hope you will be able to be with us. 
 
Tomorrow will also be a Day of Prayer (info and a request for help below from Sister Hai An) for the native Americans at Standing Rock. So please hold them in your hearts .   If you would like to support them it seems the best way is https://www.generosity.com/community-fundraising/tipis-for-dharma-practitioners-at-standing-rock
We just returned from visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington.
It was incredibly moving. There are three underground levels chronicling the history - complicated and horrific - of man’s inhumanity to his fellow beings and three floors above ground documenting the extraordinary strength, talents and courage that have allowed so many African Americans to make unequaled contributions to our nation and our culture. It is also a heartbreaking chronicle of the tendency of human beings to be blinded by greed and put money before people. 
Being in our nation's capitol with all of the reminders of the values and  idealism upon which our country was founded, we were struck by how  all of the wheeling and  dealing of present day Washington, illustrated how greed blindness has become an epidemic  and I was saddened by how far we still have to go to recognize our true nature of interbeing.  When we put money before people we are creating a hell realm for us all. It reminds me of the Cree proverb.....
gkdm75h
These are all invitations to deepen our practice....to help wherever we can and water seeds of joy.
 
We have lots of opportunities to do just that....here are a couple....
SAVE THE DATE  - Saturday, January 7 , FOR A DAY OF MINDFULNESS FOCUSED ON FACILITATION AND SANGHA BUILDING. More info will be coming.
 
Next Saturday, Dec. 10 I have been invited to offer a Day of Mindfulness in Boston on "Freedom from Fear and Separation". I have included the information below. If you will be in Boston, or have friends who will, come join us!
 
I hope you will be able to be with us on tomorrow evening and until then, I am...
sending much love,
Joanne
 
INFO FOR DAY OF MINDFULNESS IN BOSTON
 
Dear Friends, please see the attached flyer with details about the December 10, 9:30-3:30.  Day of Mindfulness with Joanne Friday,  “Freedom From Fear and Separation." Everyone is welcome —  And maybe you have a friend who is curious about your practice!
 
Our November DOM just what we hoped for: a warm and joyous sharing of the dharma and building connections across sanghas when over 60 friends attended. We hope you’ll join us this Saturday.  Joanne writes: 
 
"We will be able to stop and enjoy meditation and a Dharma talk in the morning and body centered practice, and a sharing of the Dharma in the afternoon.  In order to expand our capacity to be with difficulties, Thich Nhat Hanh tells us we need to water lots of seeds of joy in our consciousness. We can do that together."
 
The registration fee of $20 supports the temple. However no one is required to pay anything to attend MPCGB DOMs. Kindly pre-register: bostonoldpath.org
 
Please dress warmly, wear comfortable clothes and bring a bag lunch along with your own cup or mug. Tea will be available.  Please note: no food or drink is allowed in the meditation hall.
 
Temple Vietnam is one mile from Forest Hills MBTA and the Arborway. On a map, notice that it is located between the Arboretum and Franklin Park.  Search 68 Bradeen Street Roslindale, MA 02131, in your navigation.  Drive inside the gate for plenty of parking or park at end of the street.
 
Please share this flyer with your sangha and friends. 
And let me know of any questions.  With my smile and a lotus for our sangha, Janey
 
FROM SISTER OCEAN REGARDING STANDING ROCK

my dear sangha family,

 
how wonderful it was to see you last month!  it was a highlight of my trip and i hope i won't have to wait 2 more years to see you again.  i'll certainly be in touch next time i'm around.

 
on sunday, december 4thchief arvol looking horse at the standing rock water protector encampment, has called for an interfaith day of prayer.  we will be participating from blue cliff monastery and i've made a commitment to fast in solidarity on that day.  The struggle for clean water and respecting native land rights is very dear to my heart.  would you consider participating?
 
i am happy to get to support the movement with my energy and i want to do more.  i have a dream of raising $1000 for the water protectors.  as a nun, i receive $50 a month for basic expenses.  i'm donating $100 to kick this off - 2 months pay!   would you consider donating to the encampment?  if you've already donated, would you consider another $5 or $10?  the winter has arrived and they are living outdoors, in the snow, to protect water for everyone.  every little bit helps.
 
 
  1. Share this Call to Prayer widely via Social Media, etc
  2. Come together with family, friends, sangha members on December 4th in prayer at ~ 10:00 am - noon (Mountain Time)/ Noon-2:00 PM EST.  Really hold those at Standing Rock in metta, meditation, and prayer, but also thanks and prayers for all who have protected Mother Earth, especially water, over the years.  
  3. Be very mindful of water all day. 
  4. Organized a public Flash Meditation, if possible, at those times.
  5. Take photos of your efforts, and share these on the Interfaith Facebook page and elsewhere; this is very helpful to those at the Camp, especially to those who have suffered trauma.
  6. Divest from banks involved with the pipelines. For Americans, this includesinclude the Bank of America, HSBC, UBS, Wells Fargo, Chase and CitiBank.  For my Canadian friends, that would be TD. If you're not sure how to do that, here's a video to show you how easy it can be.  And an article.  There are also pipelines that PM Justin Trudeau just approved of, also needing to be stopped.
 
thank you so much for considering this.  if you do donate, pray/meditate, or another action, please let me know and i'll email again after the 4th to tell you how we did!  even small actions can change the world and they can certainly save us from despair.
 
in gratitude and deep love
sr. hai an