Our schedule is returning to normal after the break for the holiday season, with all the usual events starting up again from 2nd January. More information can be found on our calendar.
Our annual Wymondham day retreat will be on Saturday 28th March, at the usual venue, Fairland Church Centre. The retreat will begin at 10.30am, with people welcome to arrive from 10.00am onwards, and it will finish at 4.00pm. You can come along for part of the day, if you’re not able to stay for the whole retreat.
The Festival of the Buddha’s Enlightenment on 1st December was a lovely celebration. (The photo below was taken just after the ceremony.) The Dharma talk focussed on how we can realise Enlightenment by following the advice of the famous lines from the poem Hsin Hsin Ming (That Which is Engraved on the Heart that Trusts to the Eternal), by the Third Chinese Ancestor in our tradition, Kanchi Sosan: “The Way to the Ultimate is not hard; simply give up picking and choosing”. The discussion was enhanced by a delicious home-made almond cake, complete with Buddha silhouette.
Our Christmas meal at the River Green Cafe was a very pleasant occasion, as always. It enabled Sangha members (and some partners) to enjoy good company and delicious food in a relaxed setting, as can be seen in the photos below.
On New Year’s Eve, we had an evening of meditation, as well as a ceremony that allowed us to express both our gratitude for being able to train during the year that was ending and our wish to continue our practice of meditating and living by the Precepts during the year that was beginning. We had the opportunity to re-affirm this commitment on the following day, when the first ceremony of the new year was Renewing the Precepts.
In November the Priory’s garden lost another of its original three big trees (the second one in two years). The lime tree overhanging the road had to be cut down as it was completely dead. This time a crane and a cherry-picker were used to fell it, in less than a couple of hours. The equipment just managed to fit into our car-park area, as can be seen in the photo below. It is sad to see these grand old trees disappear and hopefully the remaining trees can stay healthy.
Thank you to those people who looked after the Priory while I was away in December and who ensured that the Basic Buddhism Evenings continued on Tuesdays. Thanks also to those who have been helping to keep the Priory clean and the garden tidy.
With best wishes and in gassho,