Triratna News

Coronavirus Grants for Triratna Order Members

Posted 31 hours ago

The Abhayaratna Trust is responding to the financial hardship resulting from the spread of Covid-19 by offering short term relief through cash grants of up to £500 per Order member as support at this time.

Many Order members are self-employed and the sudden loss of income has left some of them without the resources to pay food and utility bills and with rent shortfalls. Access to state benefits can be too slow or not available in many countries.

So if you are an Order member who is struggling financially and would be helped by a cash grant, you can now apply online for support.

Apply to the Abhayaratna Trust’s Coronavirus grants scheme

This is a quote from one Order member who recently received a grant from The Abhayaratna Trust:

Thank you very much from the bottom of my heart for the grant that has enabled me to turn myself around in this critical time and set up as an online tutor. Your generous grant has arrived in my bank account and I have already earned my food money for the week as a result of being able to purchase my tripod (which works a treat) and afford other resources such as printing and postage.

Also, as a small charity, The Abhayaratna Trust are appealing for donations to help them meet the need for these grants. If they are able to raise £10,000 they will be able to make urgent grants available to an additional 20-25 Order members worldwide.

Donate towards the Abhayaratna Trust grants scheme

Alternatively you can jinavamsa [at] abhayaratnatrust.org.uk (email Jinavamsa) , Communications Support, for information on other ways to give.

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Ordination in Melbourne, Australia

Posted 5 days ago

We are delighted to announce that Itir Binay from Melbourne, Australia was publicly ordained in Melbourne on Saturday 28th March, 2020.

Ex-Itir becomes Varadhī. Her name means ”She who has the highest wisdom”. (Westernised spelling: Varadhi). Her Public Preceptor is Maitripala and her Private Preceptor is Chittaprabha.

The ceremony was witnessed by over 100 members of the Melbourne Sangha live on Zoom. You can watch a recording of the ceremony here which ends with a beautiful wave of sadhus around the world.

Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!

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Triratna Responds to the Coronavirus

Posted 7 days ago

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to spread across the world, how have Triratna Buddhist Centres and team-based right livelihood businesses been responding?

By now most Triratna Buddhist Centres and groups have closed their doors - but many have opened up on the digital universe and invited their sanghas to join them online. Various Triratna Centres across the world are now offering courses classes, pujas, urban retreats and other events online. Now is a great time to try out joining in some of the activities of a completely different sangha! Several Triratna practitioners have also begun to run online classes, including yoga and meditation.

You can let us know what your sangha is offering online by replying in the comments below or info [at] thebuddhistcentre.com (email us the details!)

Visit the ‘Online Events Around Our Community’ page

One significant impact the coronavirus has had on our community has been the cancellation of both the women’s ordination course at Akashavana retreat centre and the men’s course at Guhyaloka retreat centre, in Spain. Ordination represents a significant step point in the life of our community: the moment when a person’s commitment to their Buddhist practice is recognised and witnessed by those in our community as being effective. Twenty three women from seven countries were due to attend the women’s ordination course, starting on 20th April for three months. This was to be largest ordination retreat yet held at Akashavana. Sixteen men from UK, Ireland, Spain and Sweden were also invited on the four month ordination course at Guhyaloka.

Listen to Parami, one was due to lead the women’s ordination course this year, talking about the difficult decision to cancel these courses.

However, not all ordinations have been cancelled. On Saturday 28th Itir Binay will have her public ordination in Melbourne, Australia, having been privately ordained on 12th March. While the ceremony will be attended in person by just two Order members, the local sangha have been invited to witness the ceremony on Zoom. And the public ordination of one of the men who was due to attend Guhyaloka in April will take place in the coming weeks at the London Buddhist Centre - keep an eye on Triratna News for further information!

All the retreat centres in the UK have also closed: Padmaloka, the men’s retreat centre in Norwich, have cancelled all their retreats until the end of June. Tiratanaloka retreat centre in Wales, finished a retreat a week early and closed on 20th March. Similarly Taraloka retreat centre has closed until the beginning of June. Dhanakosa retreat centre in Scotland have created an online programme involving videos, talks, online live sessions, and pictures, to keep us all inspired and connected through this difficult time. And, at Adhisthana, the burial place of Sangharakshita, the founder of the Triratna Buddhist Community and Order, the community there are using this time as an opportunity for work and practice together - you can take a look at their ‘home schedule’ and follow them on instagram to see how it’s all going.

And of course, it’s not just urban Buddhist centres and retreat centres that have been affected by this global crisis. Lama’s Pyjamas, the charity shop for the London Buddhist Centre, has closed its doors for a time. Likewise, Karuna Trust - which exists to end caste-based discrimination, poverty and inequality in India and Nepal - has taken the significant step of postponing all their door-to-door appeals until the autumn in order to look after their volunteers, supporters, staff and other members of the public. The majority of their fundraising is done by Buddhist volunteers who give six weeks of their time to live and work together, raising money through door-knocking appeals, so this decision will have a serious impact on Karuna’s ability to work with the poorest communities.

Some Triratna businesses have responded by generously offering some of their resources for free. Windhorse Publications, which is Triratna’s main publishing house, are giving away a free eBook each week, for as long as is needed, in order to help make the Buddha’s teachings and practices more widely available whatever your situation. This week’s free eBook is Solitude and Loneliness: A Buddhist View by Sarvananda. Breathworks, which runs courses and training around mindfulness for those living with stress, pain and illness, are offering a free, self-paced online course, Mindful Self-Care for Troubling Times to support those who might be feeling overwhelmed or who are isolated at this time.

And for Order members now experiencing hardship as a result of the Covid-19 virus, the Abhayaratna Trust, which supports Order members experiencing financial hardship through illness, old age or disability, has begun offering small grants.

Find out more about the grants for Order members affected by the coronavirus

Lastly, here at The Buddhist Centre Online, we have set up a ‘community toolkit for uncertain times’ to bring you a daily supply of the best Dharma content from around the world – new features and teaching, and highlights from our extensive archives - to keep you connected with the Dharma and with the sangha. You can join our twice daily online meditations (with about 150 others each day from all around the world), tune into our daily podcasts, sign up to our newsletter or just take a look at the resources on offer in the community toolkit space.

We hope you stay well in these uncertain times and look out for each other, however you can, whether it’s by reaching out to any elderly, disabled and ill members of your sangha confined to the home, doing the Metta Bhavana for all beings, helping with delivering shopping to those vulnerable or self-isolating, and or even helping others set up Skype or Zoom on their computers so they can stay connected online. 🙏

Find out what Triratna Centres and individuals are offering online

+Follow the Community Toolkit

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Translating the Dharma into Hebrew

Posted 21 days ago

Accessing the Dharma in your own language can make a significant difference to a person’s ability to practice. The Triratna Translations Board was set up at the end of 2015 to promote and coordinate translation projects in many languages and have enabled the translations of many Triratna books.

The latest of these is What is the Dharma by Sangharakshita, which has now been translated into Hebrew.

Prakashika, born in Israel, but now living in Australia, undertook this task and she writes about that experience:

“I moved from Israel to Australia in my 20s, and it was in Sydney that I encountered the Dharma. Five years ago, following a visit to my home city of Jerusalem, I felt inspired to translate What is the Dharma into Hebrew, my native language. I thought that this book with its clarity, depth and playfulness would be quite compatible with Israeli secular culture: informal and very wary of religion, direct, appreciative of the value of friendship, and starved of true spirituality.

I had practically no experience as a translator, but figured that with my reasonably sound command of Hebrew, and a better understanding of Sangharakshita’s teachings than any professional translator was likely to have, and with the help of an editor, I could do the task justice. So I sought Bhante’s blessing for the project and set about a journey that culminated just recently in the publication of the first-ever translation of a Triratna book into Hebrew. It was unfortunate that the latest Guardian article criticising Sangharakshita and Triratna came out just days after the translation was published, with the controversy impacting on the book’s reception.

The process of channelling Sangharakshita’s teachings in my own words, in a different language, with its different cultural connotations, has been an insightful journey, highlighting the point that Bhante emphasises so often: that the Dharma is beyond all words, concepts and cultural conventions.

I have no way of gauging the numbers, but going by the prevalence of meditation groups, Buddhist workshops, retreats and centres of various traditions that operate in Israel, from Insight Meditation to the different Tibetan schools, Zen, Thai Forest, Diamond Way – you name it! – there must be quite a lot of interest in Dharma in that tiny country, barely visible on the world map, with a population of less than 9 million, and of those only around 40% secular folk.

An Israeli online Buddhist forum helped me get to know my audience. I was impressed by some people’s level of Dharmic understanding and dismayed at others’ confusion. Through this online forum I engaged a professional editor, a casual practitioner herself, who helped make the text flow more naturally, and conform to publishing standards. Smadar did the work at “mate’s rates”, which a grant from the Triratna Translation Board helped fund, and we developed a lovely friendship in the delicate process of critiquing each other’s suggestions. Occasionally we would get into a Dharmic discussion, and I was pleased to learn how much this work had helped her through a very difficult time in her life. The work progressed in dribs and drabs, until finally we decided it was good enough to face the world. My friend Priyada designed a beautiful cover based on Dhammarati’s original design, and suddenly there it was, on its own, available to order online, one of about 90 Dharma titles available in Hebrew, both translated and original.

It would be great if you could share the link and help spread the Dharma in Hebrew: https://dharmainhebrew.wordpress.com.”

Read more about Triratna translation work.

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Buddhist Film Nights in Hastings

Posted 4 weeks ago

Chris McKenna is a mitra practicing with the Hastings sangha on the south coast of England. Five years ago, after discussion with friends, Chris approached the local independent cinema - The Electric Palace - about the possibility of showing regular screenings of films that would be of interest to the local Buddhist community.

Initially the cinema was reluctant and asked if he could guarantee that twenty five of the fifty seats would be filled. Obviously he couldn’t be sure of that level of attendance but he assured them that he would work tirelessly to promote the films as widely as possible to groups that may also have an interest. (This has been so much the case that it has become a running joke in Hastings that Chris can’t hold a conversation without mentioning Buddhist film night!)

Chris writes:

On 11th January 2015 The Electric Palace screened ‘The Cup’, a Tibetan film, and the cinema management were delighted with the attendance and particularly with the takings at the bar. They were expecting Buddhists to only drink water!

The films are sourced by exploring the programmes of Buddhist festivals in Europe and America or are suggested by members of the community. They are mostly films that would be very hard to find elsewhere: they are not generally available on streaming services and certainly won’t be found at the local multiplex.

The screenings have been mostly well attended both by Buddhists and non-Buddhists with the films proving a way of raising the profile of Triratna within Hastings.

One cold February Sunday night when they showed ‘Zen for Nothing’ - a mostly silent film set in a monastery - they had to turn away a dozen people!

If you are interested in following Hastings’ example and setting up your own evenings at a local cinema Chris is happy to answer any questions and provide film suggestions. His email address is palomboliz [at] aol.com.

If you fancy a trip to Hastings these are the forthcoming presentations -
15th March, 7.30pm: ‘Honeygiver Among the Dogs’ - A Bhutanese film noir.
19th April, 8.00pm: ‘The Medicine Buddha’ - A film about a Mongolian Lama who is considered a national treasure.
14th June: ‘The Dalai Lama - Scientist

Tickets can be booked via The Electric Palace website.

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Un travail d'équipe international: Le nouveau Centre bouddhiste Triratna de Paris / International Team Work: The New Paris Buddhist Centre

Posted 4 weeks ago

« Nous avons reçu tellement de soutien - beaucoup de gens étaient intéressés par l’idée d’un nouveau centre à Paris. Cela a été un travail d’équipe international - sans la communauté internationale de Triratna, il n’aurait pas été possible d’avoir ce local ». - Aryanita, présidente du Centre bouddhiste Triratna de Paris.

Après plusieurs collectes de fonds et un travail acharné de la part de nombreuses personnes, et en particulier de Vassika, le nouveau Centre bouddhiste Triratna de Paris a été officiellement inauguré en novembre. Ce fut un événement véritablement international, avec des participants venus de France, des Pays-Bas, de Belgique, d’Allemagne et du Royaume-Uni, et incluant aussi des cartes postales de vœux en provenance de la Communauté bouddhiste Triratna du monde entier.

Voici une courte vidéo de Clear Vision sur cet événement joyeux et prometteur.

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We received so much support – a lot of people were interested in the idea of a new Centre in Paris. It was international team work – without international Triratna it wouldn’t have been possible to have this building.” – Aryanita, Chair of the Paris Buddhist Centre

After a lot of fundraising and hard work by many, and especially by Vassika, the new Paris Buddhist Centre was officially inaugurated in November. It was a truly international event with people attending the ceremony from France, Holland, Belgium, Germany and the UK – but also incorporating well-wishing postcards from right across the Triratna world.

Here’s a short video from Clear Vision about this auspicious and joyful occasion.

+Follow Centre Bouddhiste Triratna de Paris

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Building Buddhist Businesses

Posted 4 weeks ago

Right Livelihood is an important aspect of the Buddha’s Noble Eightfold Path. The Buddha encouraged his followers to engage in compassionate activity, and to make their living in a way that does not cause harm and that is ethically positive. But what does that look like in today’s world? How do we engage with work as Buddhists, and what are the options if you want to work with other Buddhists? The idea behind the “Building a Buddhist Business” workshop held recently at the London Buddhist Centre was to explore these issues and come up with some practical answers!

Sanjay Poyzer, one of the organisers of this event, writes about how it went and what might come next:

“What we do for work is one of the biggest decisions we need to make in our lives. We all know the kind of impact it can have on our mental states, and it can also be one of the biggest ways we make a difference in the world.

We’ve got a history of integrating spiritual practice into work in Triratna, with a whole host of “team-based right livelihood” projects across the world. But what does the future look like for Buddhist businesses? That was the question on my, and my friend Joris’, mind when we came up with the idea for the Build a Buddhist Business day at the London Buddhist Centre (LBC). As Jnanavaca said in his talk which opened the day: starting a business is hard, but if our motivation is right, it’s the exact kind of self-transcendence we need to move towards Enlightenment.

Both Joris and I have experience in the start-up world, where everybody wants to be the next Facebook or Uber. New startups often come out of day events called “Hackathons”, where strangers are brought together into teams around new ideas. They’ll elaborate on these ideas over the course of the day, and often pitch them at the end to investors. I actually started a business in exactly this way a few years ago.

So we decided to see if the format would work at the LBC, with less focus on tech, and more on creating viable businesses that were really Buddhist. We weren’t sure if the idea would be particularly popular, but it really was! More than 60 people showed up on the day, many coming from outside of London. After being inspired by talks by Jnanavaca, plus Gabi talking about New View Letting Agents and Abhayanandi about Lama’s Pyjamas, the Centre was alive with energy and excitement as people started pitching their ideas and forming teams. We had everything from a Buddhist ethical management consultancy, to a support service for women experiencing the pain of losing a baby.

To help people develop their ideas, we expanded on the Business Model Canvas, an established idea in the startup world, to create a Buddhist Business Model Canvas. This gave participants a format to think through all the core aspects of their business - costs, customers and so on, whilst also considering how it helps deepen their going for refuge and practice generosity.

The day ended with a feedback session with our esteemed panel of investors: Suryagupta, chair of the LBC; Amalavajra, co-founder of FutureDharma Fund; Keturaja, chair of Windhorse Trust, and Milly, an associate at Bethnal Green Ventures, Europe’s leading early stage ‘tech for good’ venture capitalist firm. An absolute wealth of experience! This was an opportunity to hear how experts responded to their ideas and what kind of questions they have for them, but also to make contact with people who might help them, either financially or otherwise.

In the end there were twelve teams pitching to the panel, with some really exciting work being proposed. The panel made insightful comments about who the customers might really be, what might be more expensive or difficult than assumed, and how the ideas could be taken forward. There was lots of rejoicing as well as constructive critical feedback - really showing our community at its best as we support each other to create projects that help the world.

After such a successful day, we’re now talking about what we do next. Our plan is to run another day the LBC later this year with a follow-up course for people to continue developing their ideas. We’re also talking to other Triratna Buddhist centres about how we might support them to do similar things.

We ended the day with the transference of merit and self-surrender, from the Sevenfold puja, which really underlined what Buddhist businesses can offer the world that’s different: “So may I become that which maintains all beings situated throughout space, so long as all have not attained to peace.”

Read more about Right Livelihood

Visit the Jobs, Volunteering and Communities space on The Buddhist Centre Online

[Link]

New President of Wellington Buddhist Centre

Posted 5 weeks ago

After a substantial thirty years as the President of the Wellington Buddhist Centre, Nagabodhi handed on this role to Jnanadhara in a beautiful ritual, with rejoicings, meditation and song on Tuesday 25th February.

Saradarshini, the Chair of the Wellington Buddhist Centre, writes about this significant occasion:

“How fortunate we are! Not only have we had a fabulous President in Nagabodhi for the last thirty years, now we have Jnanadhara, experienced, dedicated, capable and young (ish). And that’s not all! Jnanadhara found the Dharma at the WBC many years ago and is keen to contribute to the growth of our Sangha. He won’t be able to visit us in 2021 but after that, his intention is to visit each year.

Thirty-two of us gathered at the WBC on Tuesday 25th February to witness Nagabodhi handing on the responsibility of President of the Wellington Buddhist Centre to Jnanadhara.

The evening began with Varadevi and Achala, rejoicing in Nagabodhi and thanking him for his 30 years’ involvement with the Wellington Sangha. Achala and Varadevi were the first two Chairs of the Centre and have known Nagabodhi since before he became our President.

During this time Nagabodhi has worked with the five Chairs of the Centre and developed personal connections with the whole of the Sangha. His two-yearly visits for two weeks included leading a weekend retreat, giving talks at the open nights at the Centre, meeting with the Council and individually with members of the Sangha. A very popular visitor, he tended to have lunch and dinner dates every day of his visits, squeezing in coffee catch-ups in any spaces.

He has also been leading the men’s GFR retreats and so making deep connections with those training for ordination and subsequently joining the Order.

Nagabodhi responded to these rejoicings with appreciation and gave an inspiring talk on building the Buddhaland in Wellington. He also pointed out how lucky we were to have Jnanadhara as our incoming president.

I led the ritual in the shrine room which began with a short sit followed by the Dharma singers, Suryagita, Jasmine and Trish, singing “Transient as Dreams” a song composed by Suryagita using the words of Kukai’s poem “To a Nobleman in Kyoto”.

Jnanadhara ritually received the keys of the WBC and took on the responsibility of President with the four lines of acceptance we use at our ordination.

We made our offerings as we all sang “As we all go for refuge” – a composition by Suryagita for the Australasian Great Gathering in 2018

Jnanadhara then celebrated all the people who have contributed to initiating sustaining, developing and growing the WBC. This is where he first came across the Dharma. He left Wellington in 1999 with the intention of returning once ordained and here he is in 2020 as our President.

After a final song from the Dharma singers, a poem and haiku by Ryokan set to music by Suryagita, the ritual ended with The Transference of Merit.

The evening concluded with tea and cake and conversation.

It is with gratitude that the Wellington Sangha farewell Nagabodhi and welcome Jnanadhara. As the current chair of the WBC I look forward to an ongoing relationship with Jnanadhara and him carrying the Centre forward as chairs come and go.”

Listen to the singing from Suryagita and the Dharma Singers during the Presidential handover

+Follow the Wellington Buddhist Centre space on The Buddhist Centre Online

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The Abhayaratna Trust Local Care Network Training

Posted 6 weeks ago

The Abhayaratna Trust is embarking on a new project called the Local Care Network (LCN) project! The idea behind this is to help develop and embed a more explicit and organised culture of care and support in the Order for Order members who need it, including accessing financial assistance and other services (for more details, visit their website and watch a short video about it).

The project is a collaborative effort involving external agencies including Age UK, who have given The Abhayaratna Trust access to a tool (called Compass), developed by Age UK in partnership with the NHS, that facilitates a holistic assessment of a person and produces a care/support plan for them.

The LCN will be piloted, in the first instance, in two UK Centres: Manchester and Sheffield, with more Centres to join later in the year. Please contact Mahasraddha (mahasraddha [at] abhayratnatrust.org.uk) if you want to find out more about how your Centre can participate in the LCN pilot.

On the 12th February, representatives from the Manchester and Sheffield Buddhist Centres, as well as Mahasraddha and Taradakini from The Abhayaratna Trust Team, attended a day’s Compass training run by Age UK Kendal in The Lake District, UK.

Following the excellent and comprehensive training day, they are currently working out how to make use of the impressive Compass tool, both in The Abhayaratna Trust team and in LCNs to begin rolling out the pilot project in the Manchester and Sheffield Order Sanghas.

Upeksaraja, who attended the day on behalf of The Sheffield Buddhist Centre, said the following:

Our visit to Age UK South Lakeland to view their very comprehensive and well thought out ‘Compass’ software programme was fascinating. It left me wondering why this sort of thing hasn’t been done before as it facilitates co-ordination between services for a much more effective and efficient care system.

We still need to assess how and where it could be helpful to Abhayaratna Trust, but at the very least we have some excellent ideas for further development.

It was very enjoyable meeting other Abhayaratna Trust colleagues, and our presenters were excellent. We also discovered a great vegetarian cafe round the corner!

Read more about Local Care Networks

Listen to a podcast about the Abhayaratna Trust

[Link]

The Inauguration of Toluca Buddhist Centre in Mexico

Posted 10 weeks ago

On Friday 17th January, the Toluca Buddhist Centre in Mexico was formally inaugurated. The Toluca Buddhist Centre arose from the friendship of three friends who wanted to share their practice with each other and with other people.

Fifteen years ago, Sanghadhara, Ruchiramati and Bodhikamala, then 16 years old, living in Toluca, met Buddhism through the Mexico City Buddhist Centre and began practicing together. Toluca is a city located in the middle of the country, 70 km away from Mexico City, so it was difficult for these three friends to attend the existing Sangha as regularly as they wanted. As a result, they started a small meditation group 13 years ago in Toluca, with the aim of creating a space to share their experience of the Dharma amongst themselves and with any others interested. This group continued to grow, and now it is a well-established sangha!

In July 2019 Ruchiramati and Bodhikamala sought a place to carry out Buddhist activities, so a space was rented, with two shrine rooms, a reception and a small study room. You can get a glimpse into this beautiful new Centre in this short video from Clear Vision.

Bodhikamala, now the Chair of the Centre, writes:

Toluca Buddhist Centre aims to introduce Buddhism and meditation in a way that is relevant to contemporary life. We want to create a context of community and spiritual friendship so that individuals can develop through Dharma. We would like to be a self-sustaining Buddhist Centre which can support practitioners and faithfully share the vision and the approach of Triratna and Bhante Sangharakshita.

We will try to have a positive impact at a local level and have an active social involvement, because we know that the Buddhist Centre has the potential to benefit many people. By creating a context of practice and peace we can help the current complicated socio-cultural and political situation in Mexico, and we hope to be a space that promotes friendship, harmony and mutual collaboration between Centres and Triratna groups in Mexico.

At the moment the Toluca Buddhist Centre has 6 mitras (with three more to come) and a regular sangha of about 25 people, with new people coming every week, and a lively young sangha as well! There are about 15 regulars who are in their 20s (the oldest is 32), but at least, so far, in every beginners class there are more than 8 people in the same range of age. The number of people attending activities varies but on average they are joined by 25 to 35 in every activity.

We would like to express our gratitude for all the amazing support we have received throughout the years, from Mexico City Buddhist Centre, the Cuernavaca Buddhist Centre, and more specifically, from Sanghadhara, Upekshamati, Nagapriya, Saddhajoti, and so many others who gave us their unconditional support, friendship and trust. We would also like to extend our gratitude to all of Triratna Buddhist Order and our beloved teacher, Bhante Sangharakshita, and we sincerely hope we can honour the Order legacy. - Bodhikamala

Visit the Toluca Buddhist Centre website to find out more

Watch a short video of the official inauguration of the Toluca Buddhist Centre

[Link]

Local Care Networks

Posted 11 weeks ago

The Abhayaratna Trust have launched a Local Care Network project which aims to help the Order develop more explicit and organised frameworks of care and support for Order members who need it, including accessing financial assistance and other services. The Network will also reinforce the existing culture of care in the Triratna Buddhist community, and create a framework to support Order members for generations to come.

The vision is that Local Care Network Coordinators Groups will form around Triratna Buddhist Centres to give guidance and assistance with the backing of the Abhayaratna Trust, and local experts and resources such as Age UK and Citizens Advice. Each Local Care Group will be able to make use of a special software package (Compass), developed by Age UK and the NHS (National Health Service, UK), to guide a care needs assessment and produce a care and support plan for individuals.

The first stage of the project is to implement a pilot scheme, initially at one or two UK Buddhist centres, before rolling out the project more widely, including in other countries. The pilot phase of the project will start in February and last for a year.

Contact Mahasraddhha, the Director of the Abhayaratna Trust if you are interested in being involved or would like more information: mahasraddha [at] abhayaratnatrust.org.uk

+Follow Abhayaratna Trust space on The Buddhist Centre Online

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New Director of Windhorse Publications

Posted 11 weeks ago

Priyananda, who has been at the helm of Windhorse Publications for the past ten years, is stepping down as director in March. Windhorse Publications are the main publisher of Sangharakshita, the founder of the Triratna Buddhist Order. They also publish on the whole range of the Buddhist tradition, investing in books by authors such as Anālayo, Vimalasara, Vaddhaka and many others to better communicate Buddhism clearly in the 21st century.

Dhammamegha, a published author herself, and who has been involved in the Sikkha project, and has worked at Tiratanaloka, helping women train for ordination into the Triratna Buddhist Community, takes over this role when Priyananda steps down.

Here’s a short video of Priyananda and Dhammamegha talking about this change.

Find out more about Windhorse Publications’ books for 2020

+Follow the Windhorse Publications space

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Ordinations at Chintamani, Mexico

Posted 12 weeks ago

We are delighted to announce that on January 11 at Chintamani Retreat Centre, Mexico, we welcomed two new Dharmacharis into the Order from the Mexico City sangha.

Ex-Juan Antonio Diaz becomes: Subhananda which means He who has the joy of beauty or él que tiene la alegría de la belleza.
Private preceptor: Samamati
Public Preceptor: Virasiddhi

Ex-Pablo Sierra becomes: Satyabodhi which means Awakening to Truth or El despertar a la verdad.
Private preceptor: Virasiddhi
Public Preceptor: Nagapriya

Sadhu, sadhu, sadhu!

[Link]

Nuevo Curso Online - Dharma en Español / New Online Dharma Course in Spanish

Posted 4 months ago

En el ajetreado mundo de hoy, cada vez más organizaciones ofrecen cursos online: las ventajas son una mayor accesibilidad para los participantes, pero también permite que participen una gama más amplia de personas, más allá de un área geográfica limitada. Aprovechando estas posibilidades, el Centro Budista de Valencia organizará un curso de Dharma en línea sobre el tema de la ética budista. ¡Lo interesante de este curso es que no solo está abierto a personas de habla hispana de todo el mundo, sino que es facilitado por dieciocho miembros de la Orden de habla hispana de toda la comunidad budista Triratna!

El curso, que comenzará en enero de 2020, se basa en el libro de Subhadramati No se trata de ser bueno, que Dharmamegha ha traducido y producido especialmente en un libro electrónico cuyo objetivo es difundir las enseñanzas budistas en el mundo de habla hispana.

Los dieciocho miembros de la Orden que enseñarán el curso provienen de España, México y Venezuela, así como algunos con sede en el Reino Unido. También hay algunos Mitras involucrados que son de Argentina y España.

El curso será coordinado por Silamani y Dharmakirti en Valencia, quienes trabajaron arduamente para formar un equipo con equilibrio de género en todo el mundo de habla hispana. Este es el segundo curso online de Dharma que han realizado: el primero se basó en El Viaje y la Guía, que funcionó bien con 32 participantes de España, México, Argentina y Venezuela.

El curso en sí, No se trata de ser bueno, se ha ajustado para un entorno online con presentaciones cortas, meditaciones y grupos de debate para profundizar. Habrá un foro online para que los participantes se mantengan en contacto durante el curso. Se puede asistir en vivo, o puede ponerse al día viendo las sesiones grabadas en tu propio ritmo. Y, como una manera de profundizar en el material, se programó un retiro basado en el curso para finales de abril en Suryavana, un hermoso centro de retiro en el campo no lejos de Valencia.

Además, todos los recursos producidos para el curso estarán disponibles posteriormente como un recurso para los miembros Orden y Mitras en Venezuela.

Paramachitta, la directora del Centro Budista de Valencia explica una de las motivaciones para este curso:

“Triratna está bien establecida ahora en Valencia y somos una sangha pequeña pero fuerte. Esta iniciativa nos brinda la oportunidad de llegar a personas de todo el mundo de habla hispana que de otro modo no tendrían acceso a las enseñanzas del Buda para su vida cotidiana ”.

El dinero recaudado de este curso se utilizará para financiar la renovación y el alquiler de una nueva ubicación para el Centro Budista de Valencia que está en proceso de reubicación debido a los alquileres en espiral.

Obtenga más información sobre este curso

Leer más sobre el retiro “No se trata de ser bueno”

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In today’s busy world, more and more organisations are offering online courses: the advantages are greater affordability for participants but it also enables a wider range of people, from beyond a limited geographical area, to take part. Taking advantage of these possibilities, the Valencia Buddhist Centre will be running an online Dharma course on the topic of Buddhist ethics. What’s interesting about this course is that it is not just open to Spanish-speaking people from across the world but it is facilitated by eighteen Spanish-speaking Order members from across the Triratna Buddhist community!

The course, which will begin in January 2020, is based on Subhadramati’s Book Not About Being Good, which has been specially translated and produced into an eBook by Dharmamegha which aims to spread Buddhist teachings in Spanish-speaking world.

The eighteen Order members who will be teaching the course come from Spain, Mexico and Venezuela as well as some based in the UK. There are also some Mitras involved who are from Argentina and Spain.

The course will be coordinated by Silamani and Dharmakirti in Valencia, who worked hard to assemble a gender-balanced team from across the Spanish-speaking world. This is the second online Dharma course they have run: the first one was based on The Journey and The Guide which worked well with 32 participants from Spain, Mexico, Argentina and Venezuela.

The course itself, No se trata de ser bueno, has been adjusted for an online setting with short presentations, meditations and breakout groups for discussion. There’ll be an online forum for participants to stay in touch with each other throughout the course. It can be attended live – or you can catch up by watching the recorded sessions at your own pace. And, as a means of going deeper into the material, a retreat based on the course has been scheduled for the end of April at Suryavana, a beautiful retreat Centre in the countryside not far from Valencia.

Furthermore, all the resources produced for the course will be available afterwards as a resource for Mitras and Order members in Venezuela.

Paramachitta, the Chair of Valencia Buddhist Centre explains one of the motivations for this course:

Triratna is well established now in Valencia and we are a small but strong sangha. This initiative gives us an opportunity to reach people throughout the Spanish-speaking world who otherwise would not have access to the Buddha’s teachings for their everyday life.

Money raised from this course will be used to fund the refurbishment and rent of a new location for the Valencia Buddhist Centre which is in the process of relocating due to spiralling rents.

Find out more about this course.

Read about the ‘No se trata de ser bueno’ retreat.

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The Boeddhawierde: A New Retreat Centre in the Netherlands

Posted 4 months ago

Last week the new retreat centre in the north of the Netherlands was informally opened: the Boeddhawierde. A mosaic made by a friend of the local sangha, Lucia Keidel, was unveiled during a ceremony - which marks a significant step in the further development of Triratna in the Netherlands.

‘Wierde’ refers to a mound that the local ancestors built in the muddy fields, to keep their feet dry and bury their dead. Later when the dykes were build, they became sacred spots and churches were typically built on them. (‘Boedhha’ is the Dutch for ‘Buddha’.)

Order member Silavadin bought the building a year and a half ago and has been rebuilding it since then, with the help of many people. The Boeddhawierde is situated adjacent to the local church in the village of Usquert. It’s very quiet and there is a sense of sacredness to it all, making it a very good location for a retreat centre. The Boeddhawierde can host small groups of up to ten people, as well as those wishing to do a solitary retreat.

Silavadin’s next plan is to get charitable status for the project. At the moment he is running the retreat centre on his own - although from January there will be a young mitra joining him, forming the beginnings of a small community.

Silavadin writes: “My ideal for the Boeddhawierde is that it would be an oasis where people can have a rest from samsara, breathe, be themselves, get together and practice the Dharma, especially art and meditation, and thrive. There should also be a place for the unusual.”

Watch a short video of the making of the Boeddhawierde

Visit the Boeddhawierde website

[Link]