Subject: Happy Losar from Samye Dzong London
I started off the last newsletter by wishing everyone a happy new year and...here we are again! Happy Losar (Tibetan New Year), which is on Tuesday
21st February and marks the beginning of the year of the Water Rabbit. According to the zodiac, the Rabbit is considered the luckiest of all the animals. They are spiritual and peace loving by nature, and loathe any kind of aggression. They are compassionate, cautious, apt at resolving conflicts, calm and tactful. They are also creative, intelligent, loyal, generous and honest. May these qualities come true for every one of us this coming year.
Now February is a relatively quiet month teaching-wise. The teaching with Lama Zangmo on A Precious Garland of the Supreme Path by Gampopa continues. It is becoming a popular, weekly drop-in class. If you have not been able to attend so far, or you went to a few but have missed it for a while, don't be put off - you will be able to get something from any one of these classes.
In this newsletter I'll be focusing on what's going on from the end of February and into March - and we have some good stuff coming up. To find out more, just read on.
Best wishes, David Bates Newsletter Editor
News in Brief
Donations - The centre benefits countless individuals by o
ffering the space and the tools for developing peace and tranquillity in the heart of London. This is possible because of the kindness of those individuals connected to us through donations, gifts, volunteering as well as the many activities that take place in the centre. We welcome one-off donations as well as regular monthly donations, both of which can be made via the website. Thank you for anything you are able to offer, both now and in the future. And thank you to all those who have given / continue to donate towards the running of the Centre. Your support is invaluable. Dates for your diary
Simply Meditation - we have two of these meditation days this month: the 12th and the 26th February. They comprise a series of meditation sessions throughout the day and you can attend as many or as few as you want. These days are a great opportunity to spend time in silent meditation practice. Getting together with fellow practitioners gives strength and is an ideal environment where those who would like to meditate more can be supported by the group endeavour. Full details of the day's schedule can be found on the website and there is no need to book in advance. Just turn up on the day. An Introduction to Meditation, with Lama Zangmo runs for four weeks starting on Wednesday 1st March, from 6.30 pm - 8 pm. One of our more popular courses. Even for more experienced practitioners, it's sometimes worth revisiti
ng the basics. We would like to draw your attention to this Special Event. On Saturday 29th April, from 3 pm - 5 pm, the Tashi Lhunpo Monks will be leading an afternoon of prayers at Kagyu Samye Dzong London for the swift return of our precious Founder, Choje Akong Tulku Rinpoche, and the Long Life of our precious Abbot, Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche. We hope many of you will join us on the day. Everybody is welcome.
Introduction to Buddhism - The Noble Eightfold PathOn Saturday 25th February, Lama Zangmo will be teaching about the Noble Eightfold Path from 10 am - 4 pm. This is the second session of a seven-part Introduction to Buddhism series. The Noble Eightfold Path is the essence of the Middle Way, the path between the extremes of self-indulgence and denial. It contains eight interrelated aspects that make up the 'skilful living' that the Buddha taught is necessary to uproot suffering and its causes, and thus to sever the cycle of conditioned existence.The Noble Eightfold Path comprises the three essentials of Buddhist training, ethical conduct, mental development and wisdom. This day can be attended as a cou
rse on its own or as a part of the monthly Introduction to Buddhism series. The course will also include time for Q&A and meditation. Our Tibetan Tearoom & Shop will be serving lunch on a first come basis. Book your place for the next session here.
A weekend of teachings by Gelong Thubten
Gelong Thubten will be giving two days of teaching on the weekend of the 4th and 5th March. Please see the website for more details about Thubten. A Guide to Happiness - Meditation in the 21st Century is on
Saturday 4th from 10 am - 4.30 pm. Thubten will share practical tips on how to practise meditation on a daily basis, so that we can achieve tangible benefits in our lives. He will explain the benefits of compassion and it can be developed and practised. He will lead some guided meditation so that participants are provided with tools they can use on their own later and how to practice mindful moments throughout the day, even in the busiest situations.Book a place here.
An Introduction to Vajrayana Deity Practice is on Sunday 5th March, from 10 am - 4.30 pm. Thubten will explain how the deity practices help to purify and train our minds. There will be practical tips on how to stabilise our ability to visualise as well as how to access the deeper blessings of the practices. Book a place here.
Gampopa's Jewel Ornament of Liberation with Lama Zangmo
The Jewel Ornament of Liberation is one of the primary texts of the Kagyu Lineage and is of immense relevance and benefit to all practitioners, regardless
of what stage they are at. In addition to providing a step-by-step outline of the path to Buddhahood, the teachings on Buddha nature can provide students with confidence in the path and inspiration to keep moving along the unmistaken path of liberation. The course consists of a full day of teaching each month, with time for Q&A, and short meditations. When booking onto this course please commit to attend all the teachings, with the exception of unforeseen circumstances or emergencies. The text consists of 21 chapters, and this is the first module. The second module will start in September after the August summer closure. Dates for this course are: 11th March; 8th April; 13th May; 10th June; and 8th July 2023. Book your place now.
Volunteer for a Year: Quies
"There is a way between voice and presence where information flows. In disciplined silence it opens. With wandering it clos
es." Rumi (Selected Works, Penguin Classics p.32) Lama-La encourages us to practice more, and to consider doing so in silence. Tuesday is my Dharma Day at the Centre. This has been disrupted of late with the winter break and catching up with family. Fitting practice and silence in between has not had the same contemplative and calming effect of a full day from waking to sleep. A whole day is quietening. Restorative. Important time out as I really do enjoy meeting, greeting and talking to everyone at the Centre. It is so easy to get carried away. I feel like this regular noble silence is a reminder to greater mindfulness.... You can read the rest of Katrina's article on the website. If you are interested in becoming a full time residential volunteer at KSDL, you can find more information about what's involved and how to apply on the website.