Reporting from the Young Women’s Dharma Life Course
On Tue, 6 May, 2014 - 00:09
In February this year, eight women aged 22-44 from Poland, Germany, Mexico, the UK and USA arrived at Adhisthana for the first-ever Young Women’s Dharma Life Course. They are now about halfway through their five months.
Claudia Krüger is from Essen in Germany. She writes: “The large field, on which many tents will be put up during the International Retreat later this month, offers space to play Frisbee in a big circle of eight. We scream and laugh as none of us seems to be very skilled. Afterwards, we go back to our community kitchen, light some candles and tell each other how we’ve experienced the week, ending with discussion of a few practical issues.
Adhisthana is a remarkable place, slowly blooming like a lotus flower. Bhante’s presence here is important. Despite his poor health, he has taken the time to meet each of us one to one; a precious time during which the impermanence of an exceptionally well-lived life is felt by all.
We are here for five months, exploring the seven papers written by Sangharakshita and Subhuti. Each week is different because we’re visited by Dharmacharinis from all over the UK. They are leading our study and reflection or training us in skills helpful for the spiritual life: Nonviolent Communication, critical thinking, creative writing and facilitating groups. We are learning about the many different styles of teaching and personalities.
Some of us spend the afternoons sanding shelves, door frames and window frames in the building that will be a library dedicated to Bhante and his books. Others are helping Sanghadeva with weeding or transporting dung to rose beds.
On one hand, we are part of a wider community at Adhisthana; and on the other, we have our own separate space and time together as a smaller community. We have a spacious kitchen and living room and four shared bedrooms.
We love the diversity of our nationalities and ages. Some of us really are young; others just look young! We are:
Hannah from Kent and Norwich, UK, 22
Hattie from Brighton, 22
Ania from Krakow, Poland, 28
Alice from Sheffield, UK, 30
Mariana from Mexico City, 31
Momtaz from Ipswich, UK, 37
Claudia from Essen, Germany, 40 and
Elaine from New York, USA 44
What a gift to have this time together, and here!”
(If you are a young man, don’t hesitate to apply for the men’s course starting in September. It’ll be brilliant! Any interested young men should contact Vidyaruchi, by matt.notmatt [at] yahoo.co.uk (email) or by telephone on 07982 219505.)