Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Spring arrives

The daffodils are starting to die down and the bluebells are arriving. It's great to see spring coming into bloom after such a long and cold winter. Our cherry tree is looking glorious in the back garden, and slowly, slowly the vegetables are growing.

We have had a busy time here recently, with a Transcendental Principle retreat, which is great material to study, but requires time and effort to make the most of it all. The women on retreat really threw themselves into the study, and there was a good atmosphere in the shrine room as we did the Going for Refuge and Prostration practice within a sevenfold puja. Straight afterwards we had a week of community time when we studied together, had a number of meetings (including planning putting a new zinc roof on the conservatory next year) and four of us went to see Seth Lakeman in concert...none of us knew him, but YouTube allowed a preview and we all really enjoyed the evening.

Most everyone has been away recently, with Ratnadharini still on sabbatical, Candraprabha in Ireland with her mum who is unwell, and the rest of us dotted around the country. Vajrasakhi and Amritamati led a day at the LBC on Letting Go Into Beauty, which was attended by 44 women. They really enjoyed being at their old centre and linking up with women there. It's nice to come to the centres sometimes and see you all in a different context. Maitreyi went on an ordination retreat at Rivendell where she privately ordained one woman and publicly ordained another at the Brighton Buddhist Centre. She, Ratnadharini and Sridevi will be off to Akashavana later this month to ordain women there.

There haven't been any more sheep rescues as Harry, our much appreciated handyman, put chicken wire along the fences, so none of them could get their heads stuck again. Better for them, but it was quite nice to get up close and personal with them, rather than them running off or turning their backs and urinating in our direction! The lambs are growing and so will probably vanish soon. This is the time when the idyllic nature of living in the country is sorely tested. The sheep make so much noise when their lambs go. It's quite distressing.

The retreats are booking up well for the rest of the year. However, there are quite a few places still available for the Refuge Tree retreat from 17th September to 1st October. It used to be called the Lineage of Loyalty retreat if you're wondering which retreat it is. Book through the office if you'd like to come. More information is on the website.