Vajragupta writes with news of a new website making available a whole series of films about Triratna’s history, saying -
“A few years back I wrote a book called The Triratna Story, chronicling the history of this particular Buddhist movement. One of the best things I did when researching that book, was re-watch some of the films made by Suryaprabha back in the 90’s, a series of films about the early days of the Movement. I’d first seen them when they were released, but it was great to see them again. They are full of archive footage and interviews with people who were involved in the very earliest days. The films are fascinating, moving, wacky, and really convey something of the atmosphere of the FWBO (as it was known then) in the late 60’s and through the 70’s: a bunch of hippies dancing on retreat, Sangharakshita with long hair, squats in the East End of London and the first experiments in community living, and more…
I remember another time visiting our Centre in Ghent, Belgium and staying in the house of a lovely, friendly woman who was involved in the Centre. One night some of us watched one of Suryaprabha’s film and this woman was so moved by them. She’d never seen Sangharakshita before, and the movement in the UK could feel far away and separate from her experience of Triratna in Belgium. She was actually in tears by the end of the film and inspired to see the footage of Bhante as a relatively young man.
As well as these older films, Suryaprabha has done a more recent series (“Earth Rising”) of films portraying the modern-day Triratna movement. And all these films, old and new, are on the new website he has just launched: LightsInTheSky.org. I’d really recommend having a look.”
The films are all available for free download or online viewing, but Suryaprabha is inviting donations to help recoup the costs of making them, saying “All the films were self funded - with no commission, grant or wage - and made in the spirit of giving. In order to carry on, I would really appreciate a donation. When you watch or download a film please consider donating £3 to £4 - there’s a PayPal button on the site”.