Showing posts from April, 2013

See you in the Fall term!

In one of my classes, I heard of a mental and emotional ability, which a Bodhisattva needs to develop on the path of preparation in the Mahayana. This path is one out of five paths that describe the training of a Bodhisattva. And this ability that one develops on the path of preparation is the ability to be comfortable with groundlessness.
In studying the teachings on emptiness, as in the discussion of the 9th chapter of the Bodhicaryavatara, the Lopon got asked continuously: “If things are not as substantial as they seem: aren’t I to fall through the floor?” This is one kind of groundlessness that arises when listening and contemplating the teachings on emptiness.
A little bit of falling through the floor is actually right now happening to those RYI students who enter summer break. If only for a short month or for three months: there won’t be a schedule and the routine that carried us through the last two semesters is no more. As for me, of course, I know ‘how to defend myself’: a new …

Impermanence and continuity

During summer of 2011 when Tenga Rinpoche concluded his summer course in Allmuthen/ Belgium, he gave a final speech which might be summarized in the following way:
"Don't you sometimes wonder? You have been born in all these different parts of the world, most of you within Non-Buddhist surroundings. But for some reason, you all became interested in the Buddha Dharma at some point and eventually, you have all found your way here.
Also, isn't it amazing that I have been born in the very East of Tibet and had no idea that one day I would go to the West and teach the Dharma to people like you?
So, if you are a little bit sad because we will once again be separated for a little while, just consider how we have come to meet each other here. Keep in mind that it was only due to our aspiration prayers of the past that we were able to meet in this lifetime. If you make the same aspirations now you can be sure that we will meet again!"

Seven months later Tenga Rinpoche passed away…

Paul and Anita’s wedding.

Yesterday a few friends from “Shedra” got together to celebrate a joyful event: Paul and Anita’s wedding. We got together in a nice garden-cafe beautifully decorated for the reception. Each one of the guests congratulated the couple as it is the tradition here in Nepal amongst Buddhists: we offered a khatag to Paul, Anita, their parents and close relatives. They all looked lovely with a growing pile of khatags around their necks!
Later on, a group of Tamang girls from a local school performed a beautiful dance in their traditional dresses. And even though the rest of us in the party didn’t know how to dance like them, we joined the dance anyway!
Nepalese are known by the ethnic indigenous group they belong to. This differentiates them from the other ethnic groups in their family life, food, dress, occupations and culture. It basically determines their way of life. There are many ethnic groups in Nepal amongst various communities mainly in the hills, valleys and the plains. These differ…