support our work:meet the team!
Hi everyone.. Did you know our community at Akashavana had a blog? It was called ‘the great to do list’.. We recently decided to move the blog to the ‘thebuddhistcentre.com’ site. This makes sense because it’s perfectly possible to do exactly the same as what we have been doing on our wordpress blog, which is to inform you about what’s happening out here in the land of luminous space. If you click ‘subscribe’ at the Akashavana space at ‘thebuddhistcentre.com, you’ll get an email as soon as we have posted something new so you will not miss a thing…
Talking about what’s happening.. It has been a week ago that we picked up thirteen women for their ordination retreat which as you know is the main purpose of Akashavana and this will be the 9th ordination retreat happening here.. Women going forth.. They just started their time together up the mountain which they’ll continue doing till July.
Meanwhile in our community Acalavajri and I are in the transition from our very small community of two to one that is soon to be doubled in size with the arrival of Mumukshu and Vikasini. They arrive mid May and so we become a community of four! We have marked this transition with a day together.. Not that this in itself was anything special as we spend many days together here!! To make it into something special, we went for a walk together and talked about our dreams, hopes and ideas which we had when we started and what we have achieved in the past 3 years. The bottom line of all the achievements, is clearly, that we stuck it out here together! Quite an achievement for the people who know us as they see that we have very different personalities. Not only did we stick it out.. We learned a lot too. A lot of practical skills like tiling, yeso-ing (for the folk who know what yeso is!) driving through wild rivers and some Spanish too, to name a few.. Our next new project is building a compost loo here at the community.
We also learned a lot by being each others mirror. Deep rooted patterns and habits became visible by talking about them and trying to bring kindly awareness to them inspired by the way of working as in direct pointing or just in rubbing up against each other.
We both feel privilged living here in the midst of the wilderness. How often does it happen that you make yourself a cup of tea in the morning and you stare into the surprised face of a huge ibex who just intended to eat the leaves of the rose plant near the door or of what was left of it! Vultures are circling above.. and the silence is all around. Although it’s pretty demanding work what has to be done here.. We are able to do it in an absolutely beautiful environment.
Now we will soon be able to achieve more, as growing does mean we can achieve even more! I say this with the remark that it will not only be more (building) projects - although we are planning to built a solitary hut (watch this space) in the near future, we’d also like to achieve a better balance in ‘what-has-to-be-done’ and the ‘just-being-here’ aspect of living here. In the past years the urgent took over quite often from the important (to paraphrase Ratnaguna in his book on reflection) With more people in our community we hope to have more moments of just sitting on our bums doing nothing.
I hope this new achievement will be reflected in our posts in this space which hopefully all (!) our community members will contribute to now and then so you can get a wide perspective on how each of us gets on here.
As a last note, I wanted to add that even though we are growing, it doesn’t mean we’ll not need volunteers anymore. We will have projects/spaces where we will ask for your help. We organize work retreats for order members and mitra’s, if only to share with others what a beautiful place this is and how inspiring it can be to live the community life with other women. If you got enthusiastic please email us to hear what we have for possibilities..
If you’d like to come to enjoy (and not work) we have a few retreats for dharmacharini’s too. This year there is still space on the following two retreats:
Three week meditation retreat
29 of July till the 19th August
Led by Viveka with on the team, Singhashri, Vijayamala and Padmadharini
Brahma Viharas - A path to Insight
Ten days meditation retreat
29th September till 8th of October
Led by Ratnavandana and Alayasri
more info and booking: http://www.akashavana.org