Events on New Year's Eve
On New Year's Eve we will be holding the traditional New Year’s Eve Ceremony, starting with meditation at 7.30pm.
During the ceremony we recite the Scripture of Great Wisdom, and a ceremonial copy of the scripture arranged in a fanfold design is "revolved", symbolically showing it and offering it in all directions. After this we all drink a glass of celebratory New Year juice together, making a wish for the peace and prosperity of the temple and the Sangha during the coming year. The evening will end at about 9.30pm or so.
This will be followed by the New Year Vigil (10pm to midnight), for anyone who would like to round off the year with some meditation periods. There will be four meditation periods, with walking meditation in between (and a break half-way through) ending with the New Year Dedication at midnight.
New Year's Day:
The Festival of Maitreya Bodhisattva
Then on New Year's Day we will have the Festival of Maitreya from 10am to 4pm. This festival celebrates the Bodhisattva Maitreya, known as "the Buddha who is yet to come". It is said that Maitreya will appear when the teaching of Shakyamuni Buddha has completely disappeared and been forgotten. Associated with new beginnings, the Festival of Maitreya is often celebrated on New Year’s Day.
The day will start at 10am with a meditation period, followed by the ceremony. After the ceremony there will be a Dharma talk, and at about 1pm there will be a bring-and-share vegetarian lunch. In the afternoon there will be two periods of meditation from 2pm, followed by a Dharma discussion and tea. You are welcome to come for any part of the day.
For other events in January, please see the events calendar.
Closed Period in January
The temple will be closed to visitors for much of the first half of January, from the 3rd to the 15th inclusive, to allow Rev. Aiden to have some retreat time.
There won't be any events at the temple during that time; after the Dharma Evening on Wednesday the 2nd, the next evening event will be the Dharma Evening on Wednesday the 16th. You will still be able to contact the temple by email during this period, but not by phone or text.
Update on Recent Steering Morning
On the 9th of December Last Saturday we had a steering morning, which was an opportunity to take stock of how the temple is doing after nine months in its new location.
Over the last few months our situation has been pretty stable. When the temple's chaplaincy income is included we have only just about covered our core outgoings in some months, although others have been a bit better. (Without the chaplaincy income we would be over £200 short each month.) The graph below shows our net core incomings (which is incomings minus outgoings) plus chaplaincy income for each month.
The last couple of months have been quite good, due to higher guest donations in October and quite a large amount of prison chaplaincy income in November. The net income is likely to be much lower over the next few months, particularly with the higher fuel bills during the winter months.
There is much more information, and many more graphs, on the finances page of the temple website.
The temple's annual accounts have been approved by the trustees and signed off by our Independent Examiner, and we have now submitted them to the Charity Commission.
We also discussed how the property was working out as a temple, with everyone present very happy with the move that we have made. We discussed a number of issues, including improvements to the property and the events that we have. Rev. Aiden suggested that one of the things we could do at a Wednesday Dharma Evening was a "bring and share" Dharma evening, when people could bring along a short piece of scripture, a poem, or some other writing, which they could read out and we could then discuss. It wouldn't necessarily need to be a Buddhist text, but should obviously have a "practice" element to it. This would be a possibility for a Saturday or Sunday as well.
The next Steering Morning will be on Saturday the 9th of February. Please do get in touch if you have any questions or comments about any of this, or anything else related to the temple.
Wishing you all a Happy New Year
Thank you to everyone who has come and shared their practice,
and supported the temple in so many different ways,
throughout the past year.
Wishing you all a peaceful and prosperous 2019.
Let us offer the merit of our practice to all beings,
so that all may be able to realise the truth.
Alms Bowl Requests
Thank you to all those who have donated items to the temple. We are very grateful for donations of any household or other items that the temple might be able to use. Please contact Rev. Aiden if you have an item to offer but are not sure whether it would be useful.
Donations of Food
Offering food is a traditional way to support a monk, and all donations of vegetarian food are most welcome. In particular:
- porridge oats
- peanut butter
- peanuts or other nuts
- fresh fruit and vegetables (except garlic or peppers)
- dried herbs
- yoghurt and eggs
- brown rice and pasta
Any other suitable items would also be appreciated.
The temple is dependent on donations for its continued existence, and any financial support you are able to offer is greatly appreciated. Details of how to offer support can be found on the Donations page of the website.