I have recently come on board at the Abhayaratna Trust in the role of Supporter Care and Publicity, working alongside Taradakini in a small but lively team of two based in Scotland. I feel grateful to have this opportunity - a job that allows me to give something back to the Triratna community, and to the Order that sustains the Dharma and Sangha on which I thrive.
Taradakini and I have been having a lot of fun over the past two weeks with our Chanting Challenge – a fundraising event for Buddhist Action Month 2016. We’ve chanted mantras in caves, bird-hides, danger zones, beaches, up trees, on public buses and in labyrinths……and there’s more to come! Check out this video montage to see what we’ve been up to so far, and keep up to date with us on our Facebook page. We hope to raise £1000 for our ‘Help in an Emergency’ fund – a resource that supports Triratna Buddhist Order members in financial crisis situations.
That’s one of the things I love about the work the Abhayaratna Trust does – we help support the wellbeing of individuals and in doing so we are tapping into a larger network, into something much bigger, helping to sustain the Sangha long into the future.
We are keen to build connections with local centres, and to enable opportunities for people to give in ways other than making donations - to enter into this network of support, we’re inviting Mitras and Order members to get in touch, with a view to being a local contact, and we look forward to the possibilities these new connections might bring.
One of the things we have been doing recently is bursaries to help Triratna Order members attend the International Convention this August, and Taradakini will be there hosting a Wills Cafe and Live Q&A session with Satyadasa of Green Gate Wills, which is likely to be broadcast on the buddhistcentre.com website. Making a will is something I have been meaning to do - I may only be 29 years old, but Vishvapani’s phrasing of The Four Reminders ring as true for me as anybody else: ‘I see myself ageing. Day by day, year by year my body grows older, as I can clearly see. The causes of life are unstable and impermanent, and when they run out my death will come.’ Making a will is likely to be a reflective and liberating practice.
And while preparing for death is important, so is preparing for later life. I’m excited about the growing interest in co-housing and care homes within the Triratna Community, and about the role that the Abhayaratna Trust might play in the development of such projects. I feel very alive with ideas and inspiration.
Keep up to date with us on our Facebook page, check out our website for helpful resources and information on making donations, and Wills, and get in touch with any questions, comments or queries or just to say hello :) Sara