Wake up Boston!
August 15th, 2012 by Dan Glenn
It has been a wonderful summer for the Boston Shambhala Center. Summer tends to be the “slow” time of year for us, as many people are away or doing retreats. We had some healthy space this summer, which I think is really important to have in the rhythm of life at a center like ours. We also had our share of activity!
Community members carry flags through the Midsummer Day lhasang
We kicked off the summer with our annual Midsummer Day celebration, which took place at Rocky Woods Reservation in Medfield for the second straight year. We had a lovely, relaxed afternoon on a surprisingly cool Saturday afternoon in mid-June.
Following that, we had a delightful weekend visit from Acharya Eric Spiegel, who hosted an evening gathering with the LGBT community and then directed Rigden Weekend, the culmination of the first year of Way of Shambhala. Several community members participated in the program – we send them a big congratulations for completing Year One!
President Reoch gazes at the Rigden thangkas at the MFA
One of the most delightful parts of the summer was our visit with Shambhala’s President, Richard Reoch, in mid-July. President Reoch spent a whirlwind two days with the Boston community, sharing a lively lunch with young leaders one day and another lunch with people in key leadership positions the next. The new Shambhala Boston Council dined with the President as well, before he hosted a public gathering to discuss the question, “Is Enlightened Society Possible?” in what turned out to be a very engaging and moving evening. The crowning glory of the visit was a trip to the Museum of Fine Arts to see the “Seeking Shambhala” exhibition. President Reoch was very inspired by the exhibition – we could barely drag him away – and was very interested in deepening Shambhala’s connection with both the Museum and these powerful thangkas of the Rigden Kings, who are the essence of our lineage.
One of the most exciting aspects of our summer hasn’t taken place here – it’s taken place all around North America. Members of the community have been going to core Shambhala path programs since the late spring, beginning with the large contingent that attended the Shambhala Retreat with Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche at Karmê Chöling in Vermont. We also had several people attend part of all of the recent summer dathün there as well – a remarkable (non)achievement! There are eighteen community members from Boston heading to Warrior Assembly at Karmê Chöling in a few days, which is incredibly inspiring. We also had people from Boston attending each Scorpion Seal Assembly (Year
Bryan Mendiola rings the outer gong during the summer dathün at Karmê Chöling
2, 3, and 4) this summer (with representation at every single land center), three new teachers attend Shambhala Buddhist Teacher Training, as well as many people doing various other retreats, including solitary retreats, a Vajrayogini practice intensive at Gampo Abbey and the Authentic Leadership in Action (ALIA) Institute in Halifax.
Our summer endeavors also included a service day during which nearly thirty people gathered to make the Shambhala Center more eco-friendly. See Ashley’s forthcoming blog post for more about this wonderful day!
We had several programs and classes here this summer that many people enjoyed, including two Shambhala Art programs, a series featuring video from the “Being Brave” retreat from 2011, Vajrayana practice weekends, and the debut of our new Learn to Meditate class. The summer’s not over yet, and we still have exciting things happening in the next two weeks. You can check out our full slate of programs and community gatherings here.
I also encourage everyone to take a look at Karmê Chöling’s program calendar for the fall and winter. There is a wealth of opportunity for amazing training and exploration just three hours away in an absolutely beautiful location. I feel that the more members of our community experience the depth and wonder of our retreat centers like Karmê Chöling, Dorje Denma Ling and Shambhala Mountain Center, the stronger everything we do here will be.
It has been a rich summer and the fall promises to be even more abundant. We look forward to seeing you all around the center!
Dan Glenn, Executive Director
March 16th, 2012 by Ashley_Hodson
By Jill Blagsvedt
I was recently invited by Jennifer Lacy, Head of Family Life at the Shambhala Center of Boston, to present some of the Shambhala Art teachings and exercises to the Mindfulness for Children program. First I worked with a group of about ten children, ages 6-10, then a group of about eight tweens and teens. I was supported by colleagues Dan Melish and Esther Seibold who led various meditations.
I had so much fun that I wanted to share what we did and some of the spontaneous poetry that we created. We focused on the Shambhala Art exercises that help us to awaken our senses, and then create from that experience.
We talked about simply experiencing our senses versus thinking about them or thinking we already know what something is like because we see it. We then focused on the sense of touch by feeling objects in paper bags that I had prepared. They felt different objects in the bags, without looking (this was very hard!), with textures of smooth, pokey, sandy, squishy, soft and more. Then we experienced the senses of taste and again touch, over our snack break. Finally we came back together, sat in our meditation postures and in that space allowed our experiences of the felt sense to arise in words.
Those who were brave – adults and children – were then asked to share their poems! Here is a sampling of what arose:
the cracker was salty and crunchy
the carrots were hard to bite and had a crunch
the juice was cold
soothing to the touch
something was squishy and cool
It made me cold
It felt like ice
like “spiky” straws
from a summer barn…
I poke my
boiling in a pot
my scarf went in the pot
sticky, sharp and smooth
grains of rice flowing through fingers
impatience and curiosity
sense and sensibilitysquishy
Interested in exploring Shambhala Arts for yourself?
February 20th, 2012 by Dan Glenn
I would like to take this opportunity as we transition into the new year to look back at the Year of the Iron Hare and reflect on it, as well as to offer some thoughts on what’s ahead for us as center and a community in the Year of the Water Dragon.
Reflecting on the Past Year
The Year of the Iron Hare was quite full for the Boston Shambhala Center, and considerable changes occurred. The full time staff of the center is now a completely different team than it was at the start of the year. In the late spring, we had the departure of long-time Center Coordinator Sarah Lipton, beloved for her warmth and nurturing energy and her diligent efforts on the half of the center for over three years. We then saw Executive Director Jill Blagsvedt step down at the end of the summer, also after over three years of serving the sangha with tremendous kindness, insight and vision. The leadership and community went through a process and decided to add a full time Head of Practice and Education position, which Barbara Hopcroft was hired for in May after serving in that role in an interim capacity following her time as Resident Director of Shambhala Training. Also in May, Ashley Hodson (now Goodwin – even her name is different than it was at the start of last year!) was brought on board to fill the revamped role of Head of Communications and Operations, and I stepped into the Executive Director role at the end of September.
The center’s expansion process was a major focus of the Year of the Iron Hare. In April, the leadership identified 338 Newbury Street as a prime location for an auxiliary space, with a plan to increase membership and double the operating budget over five years to then put us in a strong position to move to a more vibrant and magnetizing location in Boston. We came very close to making this our second home before obstacles hit and the situation ended up not panning out. This was a definite disappointment for many as we headed into the winter and dön season. At the same time, the work done as the center leadership planned for the space was invaluable, both in terms of financial preparation for the future auxiliary space as well as architectural drawings from Greg Smith, in conjunction with Eva Wong and Steve Vosper.
We also saw some exciting opportunities emerge for the center to shine in the spotlight in the local community. In November, Shastri Carolyn Krusinski represented Buddhism in Boston at the 48th Annual Rotary Club Governor’s Prayer Breakfast with almost the entire Board present. A week later, the Shambhala Center hosted a screening of Crazy Wisdom, Johanna Demetrakis’ new film about Chögyam Trungpa, at the historic Coolidge Corner Theatre.
A large contingent from Boston participated in the Kalapa Governance Gathering at Karmê Chöling in September and many also attend the Sakyong’s teachings on governance and leadership in October in Halifax. We also enjoyed a visit from President Richard Reoch in October for our Center Director oath ceremonies.
Other key developments from the year included our “Mindfulness for Children” program, thanks to our Head of Families and Children, Jennifer Lacy, a revitalization of Nyida Days (community celebrations such as Midsummer’s Day, Children’s Day, and Shambhala Day), and a multitude of sangha members attending key path programs, including Warrior Assembly and the first-ever Enlightened Society Assembly (formerly Sutrayana Seminary), which just wrapped up at Karmê Chöling.
As we look ahead at the Year of the Water Dragon, we see first and foremost a very full and exciting spring that includes four online addresses from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche in the span of five weeks! After this week’s Shambhala Day address, we have a March 10 address to Meditation Instructors, Assistant Directors, and Shambhala Guides. Following that, on March 17-18 we have our first ever Shambhala Sadhana Retreat, which will be led by Acharya Emily Bower, include online teachings from the Sakyong, and introduce a new practice to people who have taken the Enlightened Society Vow. Lastly, on April 1, the Sakyong will address the community as part of the 25th Anniversary of the Vidyadhara, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s Parinirvana.
Additionally, the spring lineup includes a seven-week video class called “Celebrating the Life of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche” which is also part of our 25th Anniversary celebration, a visit from Ikebana teacher Marcia Shibata, a very special visit from Lady Diana Mukpo to teach Golden Key, and Acharya Suzann Duquette teaching the Rigden Weekend.
Also in the realm of programming, the Shastris, Ms. Hopcroft and myself are looking at ways to continue to develop and strengthen our “gateway” level programs and offer meditation instruction and present the teachings to newcomers in an accessible way that is relevant to everyday life.
This year will see us continue our expansion process, now with the aforementioned benefit of having done a lot of legwork that puts us in a good position to succeed with an auxiliary space. The Drala Spot committee, headed by John Ranco, is back on the beat looking at possible new locations for this space, and will be asking the community for help with ideas and leads. Stay tuned!
Another development is that the leadership (Shastris, Board of Trustees, and Shambhala Council) will be spending time with our very own Joe Inskeep, who serves as the Chair of the Mandala Structure and Governance Working Group for Shambhala, to explore whether Boston is ready to take on the new governance model that the Sakyong and President Richard Reoch are encouraging centers to put in place. Information about the Kalapa Governance model can be found here. We will keep you posted on any further developments in this area!
In April, the Sakyong’s new book, Running with the Mind of Meditation, will be released April 10, and the team of Running Meditation Instructors have been working with Barbara and myself to plan some events out in the community this spring in support of this book and offering these teachings. This will be one of many increased opportunities that are arising for us to get involved in the local community and offer programs and participate in events in the Greater Boston area.
We are also thrilled to be partnering with the Museum of Fine Arts and exploring our auspicious connection to their Seeking Shambhala exhibit of 17th century paintings of the Rigden Kings. Shastri Diana Evans will give meditation instruction at the exhibit opening and we are working with the museum on putting together a program at the center, as well.
We will also be paying close attention to a recent Shambhala News Service announcement about the Sakyong and Sakyong Wangmo’s meeting with the Kalapa Council, their senior leadership team, about moving forward with our “2020 Vision.” In 2010, the Sakyong wrote in his Letter of the Morning Sun:
If Shambhala as a vision, a lineage, and a community is to have any real effect on the world, the next ten years are essential. We must now begin to organize, train, and develop ourselves with greater commitment and determination. Therefore, I ask all Shambhalians to see the next ten years as a time to truly challenge ourselves. If we can make substantial progress over this time, I believe we will have shifted the momentum of the lineage and vision toward being able to fulfill the Dorje Dradül’s intentions.
You can read the full document about the gathering with the Kalapa Council here – it’s quite inspiring! There are a number of ways we are already working with these areas here in Boston, and we will continue make them an increased focus.
As you can see, the months ahead are exciting and full. I am looking forward to continuing the journey with all of you and stepping into my first full year in this role. I offer you all a humble and heartfelt thank you for everything you do – from offering financially, to coordinating programs, serving on committees, teaching programs, Kasung service, holding posts, housekeeping and cleaning – all of your offerings of service and support are innumerable.
As the new “Aspiration of Shambhala” chant says:
May the Shambhala Centres radiate kindness and inspiration. May they continue to expand, allowing a multitude of warriors to train.
Yours in the Shambhala Vision,
November 30th, 2011 by Dan Glenn
Dear Boston Shambhala Community,
I am pleased to announce the appointment of our Director of Societal Health and Well-Being at the Boston Shambhala Center. Ms. Martina Bouey has accepted this appointment and we are thrilled to have her serving in this role.
The role of the Societal Health & Well-Being (SHWB) Director is to promote and support the ongoing development of community within a local Shambhala Centre. The Director safeguards the view that a community that enjoys being together, celebrating together and taking care of one another is an integral part of our practice and is as important as meditating and studying together. Community reinforces the truth of interdependence and thus can be taken as a key component of our path to enlightenment. The SHWB Director holds the view that our mission, as Shambhalians, is to create enlightened society, rather than to become a collection of enlightened individuals. Therefore, the purpose of this seat is to foster what the Sakyong has called “a culture of profound kindness” at the local center level.
The appointment of local SHWB Directors is made centrally, by the Director of the Shambhala Office of Societal Health & Well-Being, who receives a nomination of an individual from a local center. The SHWB Director holds a seat on the local center’s Council, Board or other governing body.
The local SHWB Director is the official liaison to the central office of the same name, which is under the direction of Ms. Mary Whetsell. As such, she is the communication conduit for matters pertaining to community, advising the central OSHWB Director about local matters and sharing with the local community pertinent information from the OSHWB. As this post serves in the Pillar of Government, the SHWB works closely with the Center Director. This is a three-year appointment.
The Societal Health & Well-Being Director forms and leads a local committee dedicated to fostering a warm, inviting, and caring community of practitioners, thus polishing and shining the Third Jewel of Sangha. Activities of this committee include:
-Fostering greater communication and contact among community members, including focused community building efforts.
-Ensuring there is a welcoming, hospitable environment for all who enter the center.
-Developing awareness and pro-active sensitivity as regards all aspects of diversity: racial, ethnic, socio-economic, sexual orientation, age, gender, physical ability, etc.
-Making sure there are regular celebrations and social activities, including oversight of all Nyida Days (in collaboration with the Office of Culture and Decorum).
-Caring for the health and well-being of community members when illness, conflict or social difficulties arise (in collaboration with the Desung).
When discussing this nomination with members of the Boston Shambhala Center’s leadership, Ms. Bouey was the resounding ideal fit. She has been involved with Shambhala for over 8 years, completed Warrior Assembly in 2010 and currently serves on the Board of Trustees. In addition, she has been involved with the Visiting Teachers Committee, Community, Programming & Leadership Development task force, and the Diversity Committee.
In her professional life, Martina is currently Deputy Director at South Africa Partners, a nonprofit committed to forming partnerships between organization and institutions in U.S. and South Africa in the area of health, education, and economic development. She is also an active member in the local Boston community, serving as a facilitator for the Boston City-Wide Dialogues on Ethnic and Racial Diversity. She has served as a volunteer mediator in the Massachusetts court system, and was President of the Cambridge Women’s Center. While at Tufts, Martina was recognized for her commitment to public service. She received the 2006 Presidential Award for Citizenship and Public Service and the 2006 Rob Hollister Award for Community Service and Citizenship.
Please join me in welcoming Martina to this post!She will official take her Oath of Office as part of the Children’s Day and Winter Solstice Celebration on Saturday, December 17 at 3:00pm.
Yours in the Vision of Shambhala,
Dan Glenn, Executive Director
October 24th, 2011 by Dan Glenn
It is with a tremendous sense of gratitude and privilege that I step into this role to serve as Executive Director of the Shambhala Meditation Center of Boston. Having lived in the Boston area most of my life and having been a member of the Boston Shambhala community before moving to Karme Choling, our retreat center in Vermont, just over four years ago, it is a genuinely delightful homecoming. It is clear to me that I am coming on board at a time that the center is flourishing, bursting with energy, and truly poised to take off. This excellent state of affairs exists very much because of the superb guidance and vision of our previous Director, Ms. Jill Blagsvedt, the incredible strength and dedication of all of the leadership at the center.
It is an exciting and potent time for the Boston community. I just returned from Halifax, where Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche taught at a gathering of leaders in the community called “Dignity: Governing Enlightened Society.” The clarity, brilliance, and inspiration behind the Sakyong’s teaching were profoundly moving. He emphasized that our ability as leaders – and I would consider all of us leaders in a blossoming societal movement at this point – depends solely on having a personal, deep connection with and understanding of basic goodness. He talked about his own in-depth, personal reflection on these teachings and asked us all to do the same: to really contemplate the teachings on basic goodness and how they are personally relevant to us on an experiential level. I also felt a strong sense of unification over the course of the weekend – a sense that we may all have our different personal practices, our different areas of work in the world, our different views and experiences, but we are all moving forward together in a vision of building and realizing enlightened society .
The Sakyong also said that this is a poignant time right now in the world – we can talk about human nature without necessarily being seen as “spiritual” or “philosophical” because people are genuinely questioning what life is about. With so much falling apart, there is a window of time before us to genuinely affect change in the world. It is in this spirit that we can move forward with our vision in a myriad of ways. As we continue to come together and strengthen as individuals and as a community, we can go out more and more and be of benefit to the world.
With our expansion of adding a second center located on Newbury Street looking more like a reality, with Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche moving at lightning speed and challenging us to keep up, and with a core of teachings that truly can change the world , we find ourselves in an incredibly exciting and fortunate situation. I look forward to working with all of you, continuing to get to know you, meeting those of you whom I haven’t yet met, and hearing your ideas about carrying this vast vision forward. Please feel free to come by the center and say hello or have a conversation any time.
August 3rd, 2011 by Jill Blagsvedt
Thank you to all of those who came out on a rainy night for our community meeting! For those of you who could not attend, I’m including the powerpoint presentation, a video of the space, and a brief account of it here.
338 Newbury Walk-Through Video Link
Honoring each other
After a period of contemplation on what it means to be part of our society, the Board of Trustees presented a brief review of how we got to this point and the work that’s been done to this point. Before getting into the details about a potential available space on Newbury Street, we paused for an open discussion where community members shared their excitement and trepidation. All comments were heard and will be considered by the Board. Next, we dove into our initial programming plan, some initial floor plan renderings of the Newbury space, and a presentation and discussion on the financial plan. We closed with more practice, one of which was an exercise to honor everyone in the room (see picture).
The Board had planned for more discussion time which we unfortunately had to cut. We have started a discussion on the Shambhala Network page here: Shambhala Network “Boston Shambhala Meditation Center” group – please post your questions and comments. If you do not have a Shambhala Account Login yet, CLICK HERE.
If you cannot get onto the Network please send questions/comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org
We will be collecting questions through the summer and then creating a Frequently Asked Questions document.
The Board of Trustees
June 21st, 2011 by Ashley_Hodson
Our Midsummer Day Celebration came and went in a flash of grilling, cheering, soccer playing and connecting. Over the years our community has adopted a tradition of celebrating the changes of the seasons. These are called nyida days from the Tibetan words nyima (sun) and dawa (moon), and they occur on or near the days of the equinox and solstice. Nyida days are times when we connect as a community and enjoy living in wakefulness with our friends and families.
Llasang at Midsummer Day Celebration
The day was kicked off by a lhasang, a traditional offering of juniper smoke. Shastri Frank Ryan and Susan Ryan explained the purpose of lhasang, which purifies the environment and empowers the space, the objects, and the beings within it by invoking awakened energy. Here is a quote from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche regarding llasang:
When we do a lhasang to bring down the magic energy of enlightenment and drala, the smoke of the lhasang is said to purify those obstacles that are actually on us. It gets into our pores and allows us to have a fresh start. A lhasang is considered to be very important, because it immediately raises our windhorse. It connects us with the dralas, the enlightened beings.
-Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche
Following the llasang was the oath ceremony for our new Head of Practice and Education, Barbara Hopcroft. Jill read a quote from the Sakyong about leadership and governance within Shambhala. Barbara read her oath and sealed the ceremony with a sip of saffron water. Ki Ki So So! Welcome Barbara!
Barbara Hopcroft's Oath Ceremony
We had a variety of games going at once. There was an epic frisbee toss, soccer games, ladder golf and of course, Tug-Of-War. The children started off the tug and proclaimed ‘this is hard!’. The Under 30 group took on the ‘Over 30′ group, winning the first round and losing the second round! Everybody wins!
Tug of War!
With over 40 people in attendance, the day was a complete success. There was even a second grocery run for things to grill! New friends were made and old friends soaked up the sun together. Thank you everyone who came, shared a dish, offered rides, organized and made a great celebration!
April 7th, 2011 by Sarah Lipton
guest article by Michael McLellan
The movie Dhamma Brothers (http://www.dhammabrothers.com), which was featured on Greater Boston (http://www.wgbh.org/programs/Greater-Boston-11/episodes/-25743) a few weeks ago, is about a group of prisoners in a maximum security prison in Alabama, who do 8-day meditation retreats each year. All this recent media attention to prisoners and the dharma caused me to reflect on the work that I have done in prisons here in Massachusetts, bringing Buddhism and meditation to men spending their lives behind bars. Working with meditation in prisons is now quite popular, and there are more than a few other Shambhala prison initiatives, (http://www.prisondharmanetwork.org/index.html) particularly in Colorado, (http://www.shambhalaprisoncommunity.org) and in Oregon. Surprisingly, Massachusetts is a bit behind the curve in teams of political or administrative acceptance of this work, compared to other states.
You always get a sense of the enormity of the Norfolk Prison as you approach. Nineteen-foot tall exterior stone walls stretch for 5,000 feet, containing the 1,500 + inmates in the 35-acre world inside. Norfolk is the largest of the Massachusetts’ prisons, built in the 1920′s as a maximum security prison, but used today for medium security, with 30% of the population doing life sentences and an average inmate age in their early 30′s. The main entrance’s double doors open to a dull gray waiting area. The harshly lit room is usually filled with nervous people, mostly women of color who sit on the large benches waiting to be called to go in for a visit. Some of the guards in their office behind the bullet proof glass meander around with their blue uniforms and black boots. Others are behind the door of the first “trap,” or gated holding area where six people at a time remove their shoes, belts and other items to be processed through a scanner. Then there’s the hand scanner checking of our mouths, the bottoms of our feet and sometimes a pat-down. Once the heavy door closes behind you, you sense the tension and intensity of what you’re going into, and first timers start to feel the claustrophobia. Through another smaller trap with a 25 foot high ceiling, a guard above opens the automatic doors which lead outside to an inner courtyard and the next building, where you again check in before being allowed to go through locked bars to the courtyard outside.
Finally, you enter one of the central buildings that are used for the various activities like our meditation group. The lower level where we meet is called the “battle room,” maybe because it feels like a battleship: gray and hard, with pipes running all across the ceiling, and dozens of coats of paint on the hissing and clanging radiators. There is often another spiritual meeting taking place above us, complete with amplified Spanish rock and roll gospel music. It makes the bells and damarus at the Shambhala Center seem like a very minor distraction.
I have been involved in this work on and off for over 20 years, mostly in the Norfolk Men’s Prison, but also at Baystate Prison and at Gardiner. It began with a request from a prisoner at Norfolk. Originally Wayne Schoech and Bob Sonne responded to the request from the group, and then they passed it on to me and Michael Mirando. After Michael died, I have continued on my own, although some years I have shared the work with various Zen monks, vipassyana practitioners and others. Spirituality and religion is big in prisons – by far the most populous groups are the Christians, but there are Quakers, Cambodian Buddhist groups, vipassyana groups, and my Tibetan Buddhist group.
Our group meets every Thursday and Sunday. On the second and fourth Thursday evenings, I try to go and lead the group. The first and third Thursdays they meet on their own. I see my role as a dharma friend. The men are allowed four retreats a year, which are 6 hours on a Saturday, and there are quite a few solid practitioners at this point. Our Thursday meetings include some meditation, and we talk about the dharma; in some ways it is not all that different from a class at the Shambhala Center.
What is different is how in touch these men are with the rawness of the world. Being in prison means renouncing practically everything – in many ways they are like monks on retreat. The many restrictions on their activities and their lack of freedom give them a lot to deal with every single day. It can be very emotional. I keep emphasizing how the tools that meditation provides can be incredibly valuable in dealing with these kinds of issues. They can become complete renunciates and really let go. (I find I mention Milarepa quite often.) Because of this renunciation, many make a strong connection to the path with its emphasis on letting go the past, working with emotions, relaxation into nowness and possibilities of a full and uplifted life on the spot.
For myself, I am grateful for the opportunity to offer the benefits of meditation and the truth of the dharma in a place where it couldn’t be more relevant and appreciated.
~ Michael McLellan was one of the original “Pygmies,” students of Chögyam Trungpa who settled Rocky Mountain Dharma Center in the early 1970s (now Shambhala Mountain Center). He has been the director of RMDC, lived at Karmê Chöling, and has been a teacher at the Boston Center since 1984.
January 18th, 2011 by Sarah Lipton
In late November, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, our spiritual teacher and leader in Shambhala, sent us a letter from retreat called the Letter of the Morning Sun. If you have not already read it, do so with the link given above.
Within this powerful letter and call to action, the Sakyong has asked each and every one of the members of the Shambhala Buddhist community to deeply contemplate three questions and then respond to them by sending in our answers by January 31st.
It is the Sakyong’s wish that we all take time to contemplate his letter. He is asking us to reflect on how we plan to apply the Shambhala teachings in our lives and our world in the coming years. This is a very personal and practical exploration. Therefore, the Sakyong feels that it is important for each of us to contemplate the three questions in his letter for some time before responding.
The Sakyong is encouraging both individual and group contemplation where possible. In response to this, please join Shastri Carolyn Krusinski and Executive Director Jill Blagsvedt at the Boston Shambhala Center this coming Sunday, January 23rd from 1-4pm. Please consider submitting your individual response after you have had a chance to participate in a group contemplation.
Many of us are already doing so much to offer compassion and sanity to the world, based on what we have learned. Appreciating our enormous potential as a community, the Sakyong is pointing to what he sees as a ten-year window of possibility for deep societal change. Each of us will be challenged by his questions in our own way.
To help us with this contemplation, we may want to ask ourselves: How can we apply ourselves individually and collectively to shifting the social paradigm in the world? What do I wish to offer? What will it take for this to be accomplished? What initiatives have I already begun, and how might I develop these further or change course in the coming years?
“I hope this gathering can be a way for us to open our hearts and find our inspiration for being of benefit to others.”
~ Director Jill Blagsvedt
Join us on Sunday for our community contemplation on these questions and to learn more about how to respond to the letter. Please register online so we know to expect you.
December 10th, 2010 by Sarah Lipton
This fall has been a season of love in the Boston Shambhala community, and we are pleased to share the news of three recent engagements! Congratulations to you all!
KI KI SO SO!
Dale Hollocher and Marjorie Wainwright are happily enjoying their recent engagement. Both Shambhala practitioners, they are also school teachers and plan to get married in 2012.
Rachel Siebert, a Boston practitioner, has recently been engaged to George Arey of Penobscot, Maine. They met while working at Boston College together. He practices zen and doesn’t quite get all of the Shambhala chanting about rock mountains and cleaving tongues.
Eric Palilunas, a Shambhala practitioner and chef at the Trident Booksellers & Cafe proposed to his sweetheart Paige Haringa, also a chef, three weeks ago.