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May 07
Friday

Touching the Earth Collective: May Newsletter

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Mind Blindness
By John Rockwell

A while back, I read an article about “plant blindness.” When shown a picture that shows a pair of elephants in a clearing and asked what they see, virtually everyone says, “Two elephants.” Even when the question is repeated, “What do you see?” people persist in saying “Elephants,” as if the questioner were stupid or blind. No one says that they see grass and trees, much less describes the type of plants. The biologists lament this lack of appreciation for the greenery that is our constant background. They point out that plants are just as important and in fact make up the base of the food chain that supports our existence. This lack of connection and community with the plant world can ultimately support a life style and work ethic that is destructive to our environment. What we don’t perceive, we have no feeling for. What we have no feeling for, we don’t care about. What we don’t care about, we can destroy and feel nothing amiss. Of course, by destroying the plant world, we are undermining our own existence.

When I told this story to my wife, she said, “What about the air and oxygen that support the plants?” At first, I felt irritated that she was making a simple example too complicated and missing the point. Then I realized the wisdom in her words. When we look at the picture, the elephants are in the foreground. We generally focus on the foreground as the most interesting event and ignore the background. If we expand our awareness, we can include all the green plants, bushes, trees, and the like. If we look further, we can see the sky and clouds in the background and the earth as the literal ground out of which the plants grow and on which the elephants walk. We can infer from the clouds the presence of water vapor and rain that water the plants and nurture and bathe the elephants. If we contemplate the picture even further, we can intuit the presence of space that accommodates everything in this picture. Space blindness is just as prevalent. Continue…

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On the Road in Shambhala Texas, part 2

On the Road in Shambhala Texas, part 2

by Paul M. Kendel My previous talks had been an opportunity for opening up and continuing the healing process since my return from Iraq. However, my visit to San Antonio would be fruitful not for myself, but for a friend. Raised as a “dharma brat”, Morgan was ... continue
Posted September 13, 2012 by
On the Road in Shambhala Texas

On the Road in Shambhala Texas – HIGHLIGHT

by Paul M. Kendel Armed with my son Sean, who quickly adopted the role of roadie/tour manager and promoter, we set off from Jacksonville, Florida, for our ten day odyssey through Texas. We spent the first night in New Orleans, but Bourbon Street, bars, and the numerous ... continue
Posted September 13, 2012 by
Raven, part 2

Raven, part 2 – HIGHLIGHT

In which we learn the rest of the story of two men in service to the Shambhala vision. The author, Aaron Delong is currently a gardener at Karme Choling and here profiles a long serving member of the Dorje Kasung: Mr. Gerry Haas. Read part 1 ... continue
Posted August 28, 2012 by
Raven

Raven – HIGHLIGHT

Sangha Member Profile by Aaron Delong, Shambhala Times Regional Correspondent In which we discover the story of two men in service to the Shambhala vision. The author, Aaron Delong is currently a gardener at Karme Choling and here profiles a long serving member of the Dorje Kasung: Mr. ... continue
Posted August 24, 2012 by
Introducing Mindfulness: A Practical Guide

Introducing Mindfulness: A Practical Guide – HIGHLIGHT

A new book by Tessa Watt We can train ourselves in mindfulness, just as we exercise to keep our bodies healthy. Mindfulness training is free of any religion or dogma, although it draws on the ancient traditions of meditation and yoga, incorporating insights from modern medicine and ... continue
Posted August 19, 2012 by
Shambhala Rites of Passage for Adults

Shambhala Rites of Passage for Adults – HIGHLIGHT

Karme Choling sanghaCOLUMN: Aging in Shambhala article by David Whitehorn “Every ten to twenty years, we can participate in a ceremony that awakens us to the fact that we are progressing through life. These rites of passage act as a reminder. If we are not occasionally reminded to ... continue
Posted August 15, 2012 by
Occupy Sravasti: How Buddhism Inspired Me to Occupy

Occupy Sravasti: How Buddhism Inspired Me to Occupy – HIGHLIGHT

by Joshua Eaton, from The Under 35 Project “Such a senseless manifestation Who is monstrously greedy And amasses riches insatiably Is called the poorest of all. Your Majesty, you levy harsh taxes And punish the innocent for no reason. Infatuated with your sovereignty, You never heed The future effects of your actions. While you enjoy power ... continue
Posted August 10, 2012 by
How Not to Tell a Colleague to **** Off

How Not to Tell a Colleague to **** Off – HIGHLIGHT

by Sarah Maynard, from The Under 35 Project A few years ago I worked with someone who truly shook my practice. I was just at the start of ‘serious’ practice and was definitely not ready for such a challenge! Thankfully for me it has been a rare ... continue
Posted August 3, 2012 by
Pedigree

Pedigree – HIGHLIGHT

by Sara Gray, from The Under 35 Project Last year, I was back to using the dating website OKCupid again. I’d used it on and off for several years without much success. The men whose profiles I liked rarely answered my queries, and most of the messages ... continue
Posted July 28, 2012 by

A Shambhala moment – updated

I was recently asked to give a little talk about Social Transformation. It was on the last day of the recent Shambhala Retreat that took place in Boulder, led by the Sakyong, Jamgön Mipham Rinpoche, and Acharya Adam Lobel. I was introduced as someone who had ... continue
Posted July 27, 2012 by Richard_Reoch
An Introduction to Shambhala Culture: Awesome Like a Hot Dog

An Introduction to Shambhala Culture: Awesome Like a Hot Dog – HIGHLIGHT

by Amanda Hester Adjutant Shambhala Office of Culture and Decorum An Introduction to Shambhala Culture is a handy little booklet newly published through Shambhala Media. It is presented by the Shambhala Office of Culture and Decorum. It is elegant, and orange, and it whispers ‘tiger’ at you. It is ... continue
Posted July 26, 2012 by
A New Generation of Buddhists

A New Generation of Buddhists – HIGHLIGHT

by Lodro Rinzler, www.lodrorinzler.com Ten years ago, when I was an undergrad, I felt alone. I was known for two things around campus: the first was being a “hardcore” Buddhist and the second always being up for going out on the town with friends. I would drink, ... continue
Posted July 25, 2012 by
Solitary Retreat and the Running Mind, part 2

Solitary Retreat and the Running Mind, part 2 – HIGHLIGHT

miksangpart 2 of Running with the Mind of Meditation on Solitary Retreat by Fay Octavia Elliott Where we left off: I heard Pema Chodron say once that the middle is always the hardest part of a retreat regardless of its length. I crossed the middle line this evening ... continue
Posted July 21, 2012 by
A Summer Afternoon in Central Moscow

A Summer Afternoon in Central Moscow – HIGHLIGHT

walking the streets,Shambhala Training in Russia by Leslie Witt, Shambhala Times Regional Correspondent Envision a lazy summer Sunday, teatime in Moscow, Russia. A flash of sunshine draws steam from rain-soaked sidewalks, playgrounds and hidden courtyard gardens. From the side door of a 50s-era apartment building emerge sun-dazzled meditators ... continue
Posted July 20, 2012 by
All Ages and Abilities Have a Home in Shambhala!

All Ages and Abilities Have a Home in Shambhala! – HIGHLIGHT

This is the sixth in an ongoing series of articles on Aging in Shambhala. It is an interview with Mary Whetsell, Director of the Shambhala Office of Societal Health and Well-Being. Ms. Whetsell oversees the community-focused international working groups for the Shambhala mandala, including those dealing ... continue
Posted July 17, 2012 by

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