7.00 a.m. Wednesday 31st March
Today would have been my late Gran's birthday. For some reason this comes to mind as I turn on my computer this morning. It seems to be happening a lot here, thoughts turning toward the past, my family history and what broadly constitutes 'my root's. I wonder what 'Gran', as we called her, my paternal grandmother, would have made of what I am doing now. Its as hard to say as it is difficult to pin down the reason for her being in my thoughts as I wake.… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 31, 2010 at 16:30 —
March 30 2010
A new car! This morning Susthama and I go to the garage to collect it – a Skoda Fabia in red. When we arrive there is all the usual paperwork to sign, so I have to nip off to the hospital where I have a routine appointment and then return. Eventually though, having activated the insurance which I should have done earlier we are on the road. It is the first time I have even part owned a new car in my life and feels… Continue
Added by caroline brazier on March 31, 2010 at 9:26 —
Last night, lay down with my earplugs in and appreciated the quiet. Let the cool air from the cealing fan wash over me. We're four and a half hours ahead here, so although it was night time, my body wasn't ready
to sleep. Eventually I dropped off, waking up ever couple of hours or so.
I didn't hear Simon come down and have a coffee with Sahishnu at 7am this morning. I'm actually sleeping in the 'sitting room' of the flat, and we've strung up a thin curtain to create a little bit… Continue
Added by Kaspalita on March 31, 2010 at 7:00 —
Just a quick hello to let everyone now that I've arrived safely and am now sitting underneath the fan in our flat in Delhi. Continue
Prasada very kindly dropped me off at terminal three at about six o cloc, we'd driven down and the weather had got slowly worse until we were crawling though sheets of rain.
Check in and customs was very easier and probalby the shortest time I've had to wait at Heathrow. I found the depatures board and saw that whilst my…
Added by Kaspalita on March 30, 2010 at 13:22 —
Monday 29th March
Evening. Tomorrow Kaspa arrives. He is on the 10.00 p.m. flight from Heathrow and with the time difference - Delhi is five and a half hours ahead of the UK- will arrive at approximately 11.00 a.m. I shall travel to the airport by auto rickshaw on my own as Sahishnu is trying to avoid any unnecessary journeys now before the day of her journey back home commences . Prakash is working having changed his shift patterns from nights to days.
The day after will bring to a… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 30, 2010 at 3:00 —
(copied from my www.plantingwords.com blog)
This is the house where I've been staying for the past ten days, minus my laptop. Continue
I've shared those ten days with four Buddhist cats, 27 fellow psychotherapy students, three faciliators, a resident Buddhist community, and two Lord of the Rings…
Added by Satyavani Robyn on March 29, 2010 at 23:32 —
March 28 2010
The clock change brings with it a sense of emergent spring. The year is turning and in the garden the daffodils are flowering among the bare soil and leafless twigs of shrubs. Birds chorus in the early light and the air coming through my open window is fresh but not too cold.
The last day of the course block. This weekend I am leading a two day… Continue
Added by caroline brazier on March 29, 2010 at 9:40 —
I and my dog Rusty have spent the morning turning over the allotment, the sky is grey, my jaw is hurting but it is dry and quite warm and Rusty has found a very small patch of sun to bask in. As i turn the soil I notice all the creatures I disturb, the worms, ladybirds a centipede and what I call grey grannies I think they are wood lice but not sure oh and Rusty has located a mouse nest but is is vacated I am glad to say or his ratting nature will take over.
I become aware that my… Continue
Added by Rachel on March 27, 2010 at 13:22 —
Its an interesting thought how we often loose our way by measuring ourselves against others or in trying to attain something which is ultimately just a human abstract. Rivalry and social standing are huge driving forces in modern life. There is such pressure on 'being the best' these days - but being the best at what?
A hugely influential time in my life was school. There was this drive to be good at sports. The thinking was that it would push the chidren to develop, to beat… Continue
Added by Adrian Philip Debney (Kalyanaka) on March 27, 2010 at 9:50 —
Saturday Morning 27/03/2010
Yesterday at Laxmi Gardens we arrive to discover that the yard outside the temple is a building site. Met by Vinasheel we soon are told that there can be no class today due to work on the new temple having commenced. Nonetheless there are many of the usual children milling around, looking puzzled and asking questioningly 'English class?'.
We adapt to the conditions deciding to set up in the small shrine room instead of outside as we usually would do. We… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 27, 2010 at 7:00 —
Dear friends, sorry for a rather long blog but a catch up is well overdue!! Since recovering after my trip to vietnam life in London and abroad has been very busy! Particularly this last few weeks. We started to plan our Islington Faiths forum pece month events - last year i was very moved to be part of a panel encouraging young people to look at the realities of the knife crime and gang troubles that plague part of Islington and we hope to do more this year. We also did 20+ school assemblies… Continue
Added by Modgala Duguid on March 26, 2010 at 20:43 —
23.50. Its now three weeks since I arrived and the sense of feeling settled, enough now to have the confidence to function here on my own should I need to, brings a degree of contentment and perhaps a base to start some exploratory work. Most evenings, tonight included I spend about ten minutes standing out on the topmost balcony adjacent to my bedroom and shrine room. I like to survey the tail end of the day, watch the people returning home in various vehicles or on foot and in particular to… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 26, 2010 at 3:31 —
Wednesday 24th March Continue
Yesterday proved to be somewhat of an easy day. Sahishnu went to Maddan's in the Ambedkar Colony. This will be the last Tuesday afternoon she will teach the womens English class there before leaving Delhi.
My morning was largely taken up with cleaning, answering emails and finishing the last blog. After Sahishnu left I decided to do some study, although originally I had planned to venture out, do a little shopping and take some photographs. However it has…
Added by Jnañamati on March 24, 2010 at 16:30 —
March 23 2010
The MTh course is pretty full on. We start with a practice session at 7.45 which I lead – nembutsu chanting and then Nei Quan and Chih Quan type reflections, adapted to a non-Buddhist group. Kaspa is with me, which is just as well since no one else chants. There are eight of us altogether including two other Buddhists of other denominations.…
Added by caroline brazier on March 24, 2010 at 7:35 —
Is it ever possible to know the right thing to do?
This is the question I am left with, after an afternoon of presentations of ethics and religion.
A consequentialist or utilitarian view suggests that if one can know the outcome of ones actions, and measure which brings the most happiness to the most people, one should be able to choose. But I don't know anyone who has the skill to do this.
I'm reminded of the sea captains tale, wherein a… Continue
Added by Kaspalita on March 23, 2010 at 17:59 —
23.10 22nd March
Today marks two significant anniversaries for me, that of my birth and that of my first contact with members of the Amida community. This time last year I had, to my families chargrin, on the day of my fortieth birthday instead of spending the day with them, gone to Sukhavati for a workshop on the subject of guilt! The workshop was facilitated by Prasada and attended by about fifteen people I recall. Little did I know at the time that when at the end of the day I said to… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 23, 2010 at 4:28 —
22 March 2010
Monday morning and the sun is coming through the slatted blinds of my room. Outside I hear seagulls above the traffic noise. I feel excited. On the road again. Not that St Michael's is so new or exciting. This is my third visit and second course block. The old fashioned quadrangle of buildings with its central lawns and quaint gabled cottage-style architecture is already part of my world. But this room is new. This… Continue
Added by caroline brazier on March 22, 2010 at 20:31 —
March 21 2010
The first day of spring. Today is warm, almost balmy by lunchtime. We are into the second day of the therapy course block. David, Gina and I are running this first weekend. The theme is about using art and creativity to explore the natural processes – life and death, decay and re-growth. They seem fitting topics for our first course together since the… Continue
Added by caroline brazier on March 22, 2010 at 9:26 —
Sunday 21st March
After the lesson today we arrive back at the flat around 5.00 p.m. It has been very hot during the afternoon but strangely feels more comfortable where we are for the teaching than yesterday. The heat of the day is now abating as I sit down to write.
I have arranged a Sunday service for 7.00 this evening in part to accommodate Suvidya who starts a new job tomorrow and will not for the forseable future be able to come to the regular practice session that takes place… Continue
Added by Jnañamati on March 22, 2010 at 5:19 —
Sometimes, in an idle moment, I like to open a book a random and see what it has to tell me. This morning I opened the 'Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa' in just this way. If you haven't read this, it is a kind of inspirational collection of stories - part spiritual journal, part biography - of the life a Tibetan Saint. Milarepa faced many hardships in his spriritual journey. I don't know if he was real. I don't care. Like many in the Buddhist Canon, he could be any one of us. Often he… Continue
Added by Adrian Philip Debney (Kalyanaka) on March 21, 2010 at 10:33 —