12/17/17 Sangha Update

Happy Holidays!

“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. What if Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!” ― Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

“Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.” ― Calvin Coolidge

Dear Friends,

I hope you are enjoying this bright snow covered morning. I also hope your heart is full of peace and good will this holiday season.

This evening we will be able to be peaceful together. We will gather at our home at 725 Matunuck School House Rd. in Matunuck. We will enjoy sitting meditation, I will offer a talk and we will share the Dharma. I hope you will be able to be with us.

Also...if you or any of your friends have still not seen the film "Walk With Me" the Jane Pickens Theater in Newport has been so happy with the response to their first two showings that they plan a third showing on December 18. It will be a lovely respite in the midst of the holiday season....so if you know anyone who is interested, please get tickets at the website... http://janepickens.com

SAVE THE DATE! There will be a Day of Mindfulness on Saturday, January 27 at the Westminster Unitarian Church in East Greenwich. We will enjoy a day of being together and begin the day with a Transmission Ceremony for the Five Mindfulness Trainings. If you are interested in receiving Transmission of the Trainings, please let me know. Registration and more information will be posted soon. I will let you know.

Some of our members have created a Facebook page for the RI Community of Mindfulness which will have information and updates about our practice. You might like to check it out.

Engaged Practice. We are confronted with insurmountable

opportunities. We need to be able not to get caught in acting out of hatred or anger, but out of love and concern for those who are experiencing injustice. Right now a tax plan which will affect all of us, which has had no testimony, which has been crafted by one party behind closed doors and which is being rushed through the process to provide "The biggest Christmas gift ever!" The problem is that there is no transparency about who will get the gift....if you are interested in learning more...I have included info below.

Also, during these times when it seems that kindness and civility are in a bit of a short supply, there is good news! It can be taught.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/14/well/family/kindness-curriculum-preschool.html?_r=0

And, of course, never outstrip your capacity..water lots of seeds of joy - this did it for me, I hope for you also...Enjoy!

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/preschool-twins-jia-sarnicola-zuri-copeland-on-the-road/

This is a lovely time when so many traditions are celebrating miracles and peace on earth. May we experience both this holiday season.

May the world be as harmonious as this Hanukkah chant. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h541a6SmK1o

Also, I hope you will be able to be with us this evening!

with much love and peace and joy for you, Joanne

Information About the Tax Plan

To learn about the tax plan... https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-gops-final-tax-plan

A couple issues that you might be interested in learning more about....a tax plan that will add $1.4 trillion to the deficit, and give that much in tax breaks to the wealthiest among us.

Right now the wealthy can inherit over 5 million dollars without paying any taxes on it - that will be raised to 11 million. This will clearly benefit only multimillionaires and increase the tax burden for the poor.

This tax bill also raises the ban on drilling the Arctic Wildlife Refuge. This was to get Lisa Murkowski to support it.

You can find contact info to send love letters or make calls to all of the legislators in Washington at https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials