¡Hola! from the community

On Tue, 6 February, 2024 - 10:48
bodhipaksini's picture

February already…the blossom on the almond trees that we pass on the way to Penarroya is fuller every time we drive through and here in the community we’re looking ahead to the retreats to come this year. We will be welcoming 20 ordinands along with the team of 5 to the retreat centre in April and before then we’ll be enjoying the company and generous support of dharmacharinis from Germany, Mexico and the UK who will be joining us to prepare the retreat centre for their arrivals.

We have a full retreat calendar in 2024 - beginning with the spring/summer ordination retreat, followed in July with a 10 year reunion retreat. A few weeks in July to put some love and attention into the community house by way of interior decoration and then we welcome Viveka & Singhashri (together with most of the Akashavana team who were on the previous Viveka & Singhashri retreat - Acalavajri, Mumukshu, Vikasini) for a 3 week retreat - Trikaya and the Possibility of Belonging. This retreat booked out almost as soon as the ink had dried on the publicity…

A quick turnaround at the end of August and then we will welcome those on the 2 week ordination retreat. The final Order retreat of the year will run from 23 September to 14 October - the third in a series of 3 6 element and sadhana retreats led by Maitreyi and Padmasuri. They will be supported by the same team who have been with them on the previous two retreats (Satyamuni, Padmabodhini and Padmasakhi). Originally offered solely to the dharmacharinis who were ordained during the unusual Covid years - 2020 and 2021, this retreat is open to all dharmacharinis. It’s been a real pleasure and honour to be here for these retreats, the wisdom and experience that Maitreyi and Padmasuri so generously offer is precious indeed.

Another week turnaround after the retreat and then the final retreat of the year which will be a self-organising 5 year reunion, which includes Padmasakhi as she celebrates 5 years in the Order with some of her ordination sisters.

Lots to look forward to whilst remaining present to the richness of each day (and sometimes even each moment). Our chapter are heading down to Valencia for the Order weekend this weekend and will be sharing some of our inspiration from the Joy of Liberation retreat led by Vajradevi and Prasadavati last autumn. It was such a pleasure to be on the retreat with our chapter sisters. Padmasakhi and I were cooking so weren’t able to join every session, but we were able to really connect in with the content and the practice and were very appreciative of the teaching and guidance in the context of the retreat community. Everything folded into practice and how best to serve that.

Personally, I’m now officially a temporary resident of Spain hurrah! After a long wait and the help of two lawyers - I’m now just waiting for my Spanish driving licence to come through. Still fumbling around trying to learn to speak Spanish so that people can understand me (and I can understand them) - sometimes feels like I’ll never be able to do it and others like there’s some progress. I imagine it’s using a part of the brain that quite enjoys being used - a bit like learning an instrument (my guitar is still waiting patiently for me - that’s another story)

So in closing, February brings with it more light and a return of outward facing energy, the spring isn’t quite fully arrived but we can hear her footsteps. And the birds are in fine voice as they start to scout our their mates and their nesting places…

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