Rev. Master Haryo, the Head of the Order of Buddhist Contemplatives, will be visiting the Priory from Tuesday 21st until Friday 24th August. Rev. Kanshin, one of Throssel’s novice monks, will be driving him here and staying as well. The evening of Wednesday 22nd August will be the main opportunity for the Sangha to meet up with Rev. Master Haryo. There will be a bring-and-share vegetarian supper, followed by a discussion and a chance to ask questions. It will begin at 6.00pm and will probably continue until about 9.00pm. If you’re not able to get here in time for the supper, you can still come along whenever you’re able to make it. Anyone who has had an introduction to the Priory or is familiar with our practice is welcome to join us for this special occasion, even if you don’t usually come to the Wednesday Dharma Evenings. Rev. Master Haryo hopes to come along to the Thursday Dharma Evening on the following day, the 23rd, so we may have a discussion with him then as well.
Rev. Alina will be making a brief visit to the Priory on Wednesday 15th August. She’ll be joining us for the Dharma Evening on that day. We won’t be doing our usual scripture study that evening and it will be an opportunity to come along and say hello to her.
Our annual Cambridge day retreat will be on Saturday 22nd September, at the Quaker Meeting House, 91 – 93 Hartington Grove, Cambridge CB1 7UB. The retreat will start at 10.30am, with people welcome to arrive from 10.00am onwards, and it will end at 4.00pm. There will be lifts offered from the Priory. More details will follow nearer the time.
There will be another Basic Buddhism Course at the Priory this autumn, on Tuesday evenings, 7.30 – 9.30pm, from 9th October to 20th November. The first meeting will be an introduction to zazen and Zen practice, while the subsequent evenings will follow the format of our Basic Buddhism Evenings and will cover some fundamental Buddhist topics. More information will be posted later.
The Priory will be closed 23rd – 30th July (inclusive), except for the Tuesday (24th) and the Wednesday (25th), when it will be open from 7.30pm, for the Sangha to meet together as usual to meditate and then listen to a recorded Dharma talk.
Our celebration of Wesak, the Festival of the Buddha’s Birth, on 6th May, saw several Sangha members turn up to mark this important event in the Buddhist calendar. During the Dharma discussion afterwards we explored some of the symbolism specific to this ceremony, including the ladling of water over the baby Buddha.
We had a very enjoyable Summer Party on 10th June, in Erpingham. The lovely setting in rural North Norfolk, together with some warm weather, made for a relaxed and informal gathering of Sangha and family, as we enjoyed a bring-and-share lunch together and strolled around the gardens. Thank you to those who offered their hospitality and lifts from the Priory, all of which contributed to making the event such a success. The photos below were taken on the day.
Recently, the look of the Priory has been much enhanced by a new fence being put up around the property. The ancient, rotting, falling-down fence that was covered with a thick “hedge” of ivy was taken down (one neighbour told the workmen that she’d been living in the area for over 50 years and the fence had always looked like that as far as she could remember!). It had become a safety concern, as it threatened to collapse onto the street whenever there was a strong wind. The landlord agreed to its being replaced with smart new woodwork and the workmen did a great job toiling through the heatwave. The result can be seen in the photo below.
I am very grateful to those who help to keep the Priory’s garden tidy and colourful over the summer, whether by offering their labour or by donating plants. Thanks also to those who have helped with cleaning and other household tasks.
With best wishes and in gassho,