The Festival of the Buddha’s Birth
At this time of year we would normally be welcoming people to the temple to celebrate Wesak, the Festival of the Buddha’s Birth. Unfortunately, we will not be able to meet in person this year, due to the coronavirus restrictions, but on Saturday the 9th of May we will be holding the festival over zoom so that Lay Sangha members can join in from where they are. Details will be sent out by email during the coming week.
We hope that you have a joyful Wesak, however and wherever you choose to celebrate it.
Building Project Update
We have continued to work through the planning and preparations phases of the building project during the lockdown, although of course things have been progressing rather slower than they might have done.
We recently received Building Control approval for the plans, so we are now in a position to start contacting builders in order to get some quotes for the work. It is quite likely, however, that we won’t be able to make much progress on this until after the lockdown is lifted, or at least eased.
New Postulants at Throssel
Many of you who visit the temple will know Max, who has been training with us here for the last few years. He has visited our main monastery, Throssel Hole Buddhist Abbey, several times during that period, and at the end of January he travelled there for a longer stay. He was aspiring to join the monastic community at Throssel, and it was lovely to hear that he entered as a postulant on the 25th of April.
The postulancy is a time for someone who is wanting to become a monk to live as part of the community prior to ordination, in order to find out what it is like before making the commitment of ordination. A postulant wears monastic robes and has their hair clipped short, and joins in with all of the activities of the monastic community.
A couple of weeks before Max joined the community, another long-term lay trainee called Pete entered as a postulant as well, and the two of the them are pictured in the photograph below.
We wish them both well in their future training.
A Big Thank You
Thank you to all those who have continued to support the temple whilst we are closed. This has enabled us to continue covering our costs during the last couple of months, and is very much appreciated.
Thank you to all those who are so generously supporting the temple through your financial donations and food donations, in addition to the support of your practice.
We look forward to welcoming you back to the temple as soon as we are able to.
There seems to be a lot more wildlife around at the moment than in previous years, perhaps due to the lockdown. Or perhaps the birds are just easier to hear with the quieter environment.
It has been lovely to see goldfinches in the garden, and to see and hear a great spotted woodpecker in the adjacent trees in the park. We also recently had a pair of long-tailed tits just outside the back door, and one of them kept pecking at the glass for quite some time. Although it was just a fast-moving blur for much of that time, it did briefly rest for long enough to be photographed, although unfortunately not it a position to show off its long tail:
The warm spells of weather during April have really helped our garden plants to get going, including the geum in the south-facing border which is already in full flower. It will probably keep on flowering now until the frosts come in the Autumn:
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.
All donations are received with gratitude