6-23-18 Sangha Update

Happy Solstice! Happy Summertime!

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” ― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

“Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” ― Henry James

“Green was the silence, wet was the light, the month of June trembled like a butterfly.” ― Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets

Summer is the annual permission slip to be lazy. To do nothing and have it count for something. To lie in the grass and count the stars. To sit on a branch and study the clouds. Regina Brett

Dear Friends,

I hope this finds you all well and enjoying this beautiful summertime. It is so easy to water our seeds of joy in the summertime....and tomorrow we will have an opportunity to deepen our practice and water each others' seeds of joy. If you are so moved, please bring something uplifting to share. It could be a gratitude, a short poem, a song, a recounting of an experience that brings you joy. Normally this meeting would be at the home of the Van Horn's, but they are unable to host, so we will gather at our home at 725 Matunuck School House Rd, Wakefield. We will enjoy sitting/walking/sitting meditation, I will offer a brief talk and we will share our joy.

We are living in very challenging times. Fortunately, it is so easy to water our seeds of joy and expand our capacity to be with all we are called upon to be with. I know that several of you are dealing with ailing family members, with a death of a loved one, with illness, etc. along with what is happening in our country. In the midst of it all we need to nourish and take good care of the highest and best in ourselves so we can be of some help to those who are in need.

At our last meeting the focus was on ways to maintain our integrity, our balance and stay connected with our true nature and basic goodness. In the times in which we are living this can be a challenge. One way we have of doing that is to let go of the excess baggage that we have been dragging around with us that leads us to self judgement and criticism. It is time to let go of outdated ideas and views and lighten our load so that we can love ourselves and each other more. I shared the prayer for forgiveness which several of you requested that I send to this list...so I have included it below.

PRAYER REQUEST FOR LAURA FRENCH Dear Friends,

There is a "Team Laura” set up to care for her in her home, as she is very challenged by her health. She now has nurses visiting on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. We’re hoping she’ll agree to a program in Wakefield for Tuesday and Thursday, but right now she’s adjusting to a new routine, with people coming and going, checking on her and helping her with food shopping and such.

This is a tender time for her, so please send metta. And a card if you are so inclined... 179 fairway Drive, North Kingstown RI 02852.

Thanks, Kate

There are so many ways we can be of help. If you would like to keep up with some opportunities with prayer requests and for engaged practice, and recently an announcement about Troy's sculpture garden being part of the Cross Mills Library's Garden Tour today, you might like to be a part of our google group. Please contact Cindy West at westnest5@verizon.net

Speaking of Engaged Practice, There will be a rally in Providence at the State House at 11 AM on June 30 to demand that our government not separate children from their families. We can use the google group to organize a Sangha presence for those of you who are interested.

There is a new Sangha forming in Newport. The first gathering will be on July 9 at 6:30 at St. Paul's Methodist Church. This is a wonderful opportunity for those on the other side of the bay!

I would like to ask you to continue to hold me in your prayers. I am on the second chemo...so it has not started to do it's thing yet, but I have been able to tolerate it so that I can complete the first round over the next 2 weeks. Thank you for all of you love and care.

with much love and the joy of a summer morning for you, Joanne

A Buddhist Prayer of Forgiveness

If I have harmed any one in any way, either knowingly or unknowingly through my own confusions, I ask their forgiveness. If any one has harmed me in any way, either knowingly or unknowingly through their own confusions, I forgive them. And if there is a situation I am not yet ready to forgive, I forgive myself for that. For all the ways that I harm myself, negate, doubt, belittle myself, judge or be unkind to myself, through my own confusions, I forgive myself.