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[This document can be acquired from a sub-directory coombspapers via anonymous FTP and/or COOMBSQUEST gopher on the node COOMBS.ANU.EDU.AU] The document's ftp filename and the full directory path are given in the coombspapers top level INDEX file] [This version: 2 August 1993] ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- SAKYA LOSAL CHOE DZONG THE CLEAR MIND QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER No 11 April-June 1992 His Holiness the Dalai Lama to visit Canberra in May His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the spiritual and temporal leader of the Tibetan people will now visit Canberra in early May. Born in the village of Takster in North Eastern Tibet in 1935, He was recognized as the rebirth of the 13th Dalai Lama and was duly enthroned as the 14th Dalai Lama and leader of the Tibetan people. Due to the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, the Dalai Lama sought asylum in India and established the Tibetan government in exile in Northern India. His administration oversees and co-ordinates settlement and welfare of some 100,000 Tibetan refugees in various countries. His message of compassion, tolerance, non-violence and universal responsibility, and His warmth and approachability has attracted thousands of followers around the world. In the early 80's He sent senior members of His Kashag (cabinet) and other delegations to Tibet with the hope of opening a dialogue with the Beijing government and made a constructive proposal known as the Five Point Peace Plan for a peaceful resolution of the Question of Tibet which attracted unprecedented international support as evidenced by His winning of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989. Following this, some long overdue resolutions were passed by several parliaments around the world denouncing the Chinese violation of Human Rights in Tibet and her illegal occupation of Tibet. In spite of His responsibility as the exiled leader of the Tibetan people, His Holiness the Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso, who prefers to be identified as a " simple Buddhist monk" has become one of the prominent leaders of the world. His full dedication for Tibet and compassion for His people earned him the title, "Yishin Norbu", the Wish-Fulfilling Gem. His universal appeal for peace, compassion and non-violence breaks all the man made barriers and makes people of all faiths (or without faith) inspired to see and listen to Him. For the Dalai Lama, politics is a job He would prefer to pass onto someone else if only there was a suitable candidate. But the unwavering faith and support from His people both in Tibet and in exile has compelled Him to act on their behalf. His popularity, charisma and pragmatism has more recently even attracted some otherwise bored citizens of the world who without any knowledge about Tibet's history, language, religion and her culture are politicizing His stance, sometimes done in extreme for their own personal gratification. However the majority are attracted by His humbleness as a simple Buddhist monk with a universal message for peace and non-violence reaching to the hearts and minds of all who have a good affinity to see and revere Him as a religious leader and as a man of peace. For instance a few weeks ago, a lady rang to check when the Dalai Lama was coming to Canberra so that she can bring her husband who is dying from cancer to be able to see Him before he dies. While there are many hundreds of Australians and others alike each year who go to India to meet Him and hear Him speak, here Canberrans have the perfect opportunity to do that in their hometown. As indicated below, His Holiness will give three public talks which you are all welcome to attend (not including the National Press Club luncheon) I personally recommend you to attend all His talks so that you give yourself the maximum chance to hear one of the most respected Buddhist world leaders as you might not have a similar opportunity in the near future. Arrive at least 15-20 minutes before the talks start as you might not find a seat. Offer a gift of a ticket to your friends to see Him even if they do not have any interest in Buddhism or Tibet. They only need to have the chance to see Him and feel His warmth and clarity that they can see how being in His presence can enliven their intuition and spirituality. Originally planned for 1991, this is His Holiness' second visit to Australia. He will visit all the capital cities in Australia except Darwin. Jointly organized by committees in each state, the cost of the visit is being raised by all the organizing committees mainly comprised of Australian Tibetan Buddhists. There are individual benefactors for the visit but there is no one organization sponsoring this visit or part of it (as misrepresented in the tickets sold for the public address) The ACT committtee hopes that everybody out there will generously give donations towards costs, such as international airfare, when you attend His talks and attend the fund raising dinner mentioned below. His Holiness arrives in Canberra on Wednesday 6 May and leaves Saturday 9 May. How you can Help the Visit Firstly the committee requests you to become a part of the visit by providing whatever assistance you can give. There will be preferential seats for those who become members of the visit and you must indicate if you are attending the talk. Other than filling in the enclosed form to become a member of the visit if you are not already one, there are several ways you can help the visit: putting up posters and advertising in your organizations' newsletters, volunteering to help as ushers at the talks, selling tickets to your friends and telling them about the visit, helping to set up the venues, sponsoring to hire a car for the visit or lend your car, helping to mind book-stalls at the talks, helping as a driver during the visit or part of. Members and friends of the Centre who wish to go to welcome and farewell His Holiness at the airport, please contact Lama Choedak for details. Fund Raising Dinner for the Visit When: Friday 24 April at 7 pm. Cost: $20.00 Where: Canberra Vietnamese Restaurant upstairs, 21East Row, Civic Bookings: phone the restaurant directly on ph. 247 4840. With the encouragement of Ven. Thich Quang Ba and Lama Choedak, the ACT visit committee is finally organizing this fund raising dinner. Please make your bookings as early as possible and try to support the visit by bringing friends so that we will be able to raise some funds to defray the many costs of this visit. Please come, all welcome. Offerings to His Holiness the Dalai Lama If you cannot attend the fund raising dinner or even if you do and still wish to make some personal offerings to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Centre is planning to make a special offering to His Holiness. All members and friends are encouraged to contribute towards this as a way of paying our respects to His Holiness for His tireless effort of spreading the precious Dharma through His unconditional compassion. It is unlikely that people will have the opportunity to present Him offerings personally, so it is recommended that you send your contributions to the Centre so that they can be made as a collective offering from Buddhists in Canberra. It is extremely important to be able to develop a connection with such a living Bodhisattva with our faith and devotion when we have this special opportunity. The historical Shakyamuni Buddha is said to have initially made connection through the offering of a fistful of sand to one of the previous Buddha out of devotion which led Him to attain ultimate enlightenment. There is an offering box at the Centre in front of His Holiness' photograph where you can place your donations which will be offered to His Holiness at the end of His teaching. If you cannot come to the Centre, you can send your contribution there. His Holiness Dalai Lama's Canberra Programme Thursday 7 May 12.30-2.00pm National Press Club Luncheon, live telecast 4.30-5.30pm Buddhist Teaching "Developing Compassion" Sakyamuni Buddhist Centre, Archibald St., Lyneham. Donations appreciated 7.30pm Interview with His Holiness broadcast on the ABC 7.30 Report Friday 8 May 12.30 - 2.00pm Morrison Lecture, "Question of Tibet and Democracy in China" Llewellyn Hall, School of Music, Australian National University, Acton. 5.15 - 6.30pm Public Address National Convential Centre, Constitutional Ave, bookings through box office Canberra Theatre Centre on ph. 257 1077. $ 10 Adult & $ 5 children Interstate Itinerary 28 April -1 May Perth, WA. Tel.(09) 277 1321 1 May - 3 May Adelaide, SA. Tel. (08) 233 6400 3 May - 5 May Melbourne, Vic. Tel. (03) 662 2755 5 May - 6 May Hobart, Tas. Tel. (002) 344 223 6 May - 9 May Canberra, ACT. Tel. (06) 281 1493 9 May - 10 May Brisbane, Qld. Tel. (074) 437 100 10 May - 13 May Sydney, NSW. Tel. (02) 957 1364 Monthly White Tara Practice Recharged Our third annual White Tara Retreat was held at Yerrinbool Bahai School near Mittagong, and seven of us attended the retreat including Lama Choedak. Having attended all the previous retreats, the participants had greater opportunity to become familiarized with the chanting, mudras, visualization and the overall understanding of the Sadhana as we had more practice sessions than teachings this time. Regardless of how many questions we had about the practice, this retreat helped us all in many ways to appreciate the wonder and richness of the White Tara practice. Even if our understanding about Buddhism is relatively clear, it still depends on the determination and commitment to our practice. If we have not adopted a strict discpline to practice regularly, then we have to try to learn to do so by participating in group practices. In view of this, we all agreed to hold the monthly White Tara practice more consistently as a way of keeping our mutual commitment to help one another by attending the practice sessions more regularly. It was decided that the practice will be held at the Centre on the first Sunday of each calendar month at 7.00 am except on long weekends. Partcipants will take turns to offer breakfast and there is a roster at the Centre where you can write down your name. This is a good opportunity to practice generosity to your Dharma friends. The actual practice begins at 8.00 am and finishes around 9.30 am. This is then followed by the regular Sunday meditation and Dharma class. It is a wonderful way of making full use of your time at least once a month. If you have been initiated and wish to do your practices with the group, then this is a suitable opportunity where you can revitalize your spiritual discipline and well-beingness. The Centre can only help you by organizing practice sessions, but the rest is under the control of your diligence or lack of it. I hope you have the former to help yourself and members of the group. John Chen Introductory Course on Buddhist Meditation 10.00 am - 4. 00 pm Sun. 24 May, 1992 Cost $50 including lunch. Bookings ph. 292 8150 This will be the Centre's 5th Course on Introduction to Samatha (Calm-Abiding) Buddhist meditation designed to help many of our friends who have not had any formal teachings on meditation. As mankind's unceasing searching has not led them to any real happiness, meditation is becoming increasingly popular in recent years. Even doctors recommend many of their patients to learn meditation to help them to recover from stress, emotional difficulties and some sicknesses. Most people are looking outside themselves into the external world as the source of their happiness or problems. Buddhist meditation practice gives inner peace and happiness which we cannot find anywhere outside of us. True meditation helps you to get rid of your tension and stress and find inner reconciliation of your life. It teaches you how to cultivate a positive attitude towards your life and all of its experiences. A disciplined practice of meditation improves your memory, transcends emotional instabilities and you will become tolerant and more caring towards others. Meditation provides self-confidence and instils a touch of dignity and sacredness to your life. Life is full and wholesome in itself if you know how to subdue your emotions and be happy with the way things are. It needs not to be a struggle. There is no happiness in possessing wealth and fame if you have no contentment and appreciation of the things you have. Through meditation you can get rid of negative habits and resolve to develop a more wholesome and peaceful and tolerant way of life. The happiness and inner contentment you find from meditation can not be bought from anyone else, but you must learn under a proper guidance. Enclosed is a flyer for this course. Please give it to someone whom you think may be interested in attending. Please book early to avoid disappointment. Gyalsay Tulku Rinpoche and His Aussie students in India Gyalsay Tulku Rinpoche led a group of students from Sydney and Singapore on a pilgrimage tour of India. In a post card he sent from Delhi, he said, " In India all the impossible things are possible and all the possible things are impossible." But it is not entirely true because one thing that was possible possible was that the group had an audience with the Dalai Lama as planned. Colin Moore from Canberra went to Bir with Rinpoche but his pilgrimage included many places in Europe. The main pilgrimage took them to some of the important Sakya monasteries in northern India and particularly to the Ngor Monastery in Manduwala where His Holiness Sakya Trizin was giving initiation as a part of the Collection of Tantra. Rinpoche kindly took all our sponsorship money to be delivered to those sponsored from our Centre. We all look forward to see him in Canberra to help His Holiness' visit. Refuge Ceremony On Sunday 15th March, a number of people attended the Centre for the taking of formal Refuge Vows, administered by Lama Choedak. The ceremony was very simple, the most dramatic point being when we all came forward in turn and Lama cut a tiny lock of our hair, which he threw over his shoulder towards the altar with a few grains of rice. Many of those attended had been coming to the Centre for some time, though there were a few new faces. I was particularly impressed that one person had come from as far as Braidwood. Even though most of us probably considered ourselves Buddhist already, it was good to take Refuge Vows under somewhat formal circumstances. It reinforced the feeling that, in the constantly changing world of Samsara, where nothing is truly permanent, our commitment to Buddhism is something like a home, a raft, as Buddha said, for crossing over the stormy ocean of suffering. Yet at the same time, Buddha emphasised that ultimately, when we have reached the further shore, even this Dharma is "not for holding onto." The faith itself is an expedient means to guide us where we have to go, and as we receive it now, it is adated to our limited understanding; inevitably, when we reach our Goal, it will appear differently to us. For this reason, I find I have to remind myself not to allow a commitment to Buddhism to be warped by that same old combative spirit which lies just below the surface in everyday life. Unfortunately, I find that I am still too prone to criticize believers in other religions (may be others have the same problem!) To do so is contrary to the spirit of Buddhism itself, as Lawrence Mills (formerly Ven. Khantipalo) once pointed out: we should rather deepen our own faith by seeing what we can learn from them. Ken Gardiner A Child's Play By Ken Gardiner Crowded over the dappled land, the clouds redesign the distance and the light. At each ten steps the trees belie their years, hiding behind each other, while the bright reflections shift from leaf to leaf, and stones beneath my feet age visibly with lichen. I build the present landscape from my dreams, and see what I have trained myself to see. The pardalote's unconcious lullaby from minor busyness amongst the leaves, making the courtyard ring as years ago, moves me to tears with what I do not know, and not to know is still part of the dream. Annual General Meeting on 11.00am Sunday 3 May 1992 All members of the Centre are strongly invited to attend this Annual General Meeting. Contact Tim if you wish to add anything to the agenda (copies are available at the Centre) The new executive committee will be elected at this meeting. Bring some lunch to share after the meeting. Special Days for this quarter Month April May June F/moon 17 16 15 W/Tara Day 5 3 &31 - Tsog Days 12/25 12/27 10/25 R E G I S T R A T I O N F O R M Send to: Treasurer, Tibetan Buddhist Society of Canberra, P.O. Box 3430, Manuka, ACT, 2603 Name:.................................................................................................................................................... Address................................................................................................................................................. Ph................................................ I enclose a cheque for $................as a (please tick) [ ] personal offering for His Holiness to be presented after the Dharma talk [ ] deposit for the Introductory Course on Buddhist Meditation [ ] deposit for June Long Weekend Combined Retreat If undelivered please return to : SAKYA LOSAL CHOE-DZONG CENTRE FOR TIBETAN BUDDHIST STUDIES PO. BOX 3430 MANUKA ACT 2603 Introductory Course on Buddhist Meditation 10.00 am - 4. 00 pm Sun. 24 May, 1992 Cost $50 including lunch. Bookings ph. 292 8150 to be held at the Centre - 33 Bruxner Close, Gowrie This will be the Centre's 5th Course on Introduction to Samatha (Calm-Abiding) Buddhist meditation designed to help many of our friends who have not had any formal teachings on meditation. As mankind's unceasing searching has not led them to any real happiness, meditation is becoming increasingly popular in recent years. Even doctors recommend many of their patients to learn meditation to help them to recover from stress, emotional difficulties and some sicknesses. Most people are looking outside themselves into the external world as the source of their happiness or problems. Buddhist meditation practice gives inner peace and happiness which we cannot find anywhere outside of us. True meditation helps you to get rid of your tension and stress and find inner reconciliation of your life. It teaches you how to cultivate a positive attitude towards your life and all of its experiences. A disciplined practice of meditation improves your memory, transcends emotional instabilities and you will become tolerant and more caring towards others. Meditation provides self-confidence and instils a touch of dignity and sacredness to your life. Life is full and wholesome in itself if you know how to subdue your emotions and be happy with the way things are. It needs not to be a struggle. There is no happiness in possessing wealth and fame if you have no contentment and appreciation of the things you have. Through meditation you can get rid of negative habits and resolve to develop a more wholesome and peaceful and tolerant way of life. The happiness and inner contentment you find from meditation can not be bought from anyone else, but you must learn under a proper guidance. Please book early to avoid disappointment. Rejuvenation of Life: A Comprehensive Buddhist Retreat June Long Weekend Retreat with Ven. Gyalsay Tulku Rinpoche and Lama Choedak The students of Sakya Tharpa Ling of Sydney and Sakya Losal Choe Dzong Centres are organizing a combined residential retreat. Gyalsay Tulku Rinpoche and Lama Choedak will jointly conduct a comprehensive Buddhist Meditation retreat at the Bahai School at Yerrinbool. It is an excellent venue with all the facilities you can ask for where many Buddhist retreats have been conducted. You need to bring your own sheets and sleeping bag although they do provide blankets. There is a play area for children so let us know if you require childminding for a small fee. Our centre's official chef, Susie Servante has kindly agreed to come and cook for the retreat. The Retreat starts with an introductory session at 8.00pm on Friday night and finishes at 3.00pm Monday. If we reflect on ourselves and regress what we have been doing so far in our lives, we do not have much to show except some memories. We are still struggling as much as we had began with as if nothing had been achieved. The fleetingness of life is hard to notice when we try to catch up the pace when we subscribe to the political, social and economical infrastucture of this illusory world. The more we try to be successful in our career and relationships the less we seem to live a life of our own. It appears as we have been blown away by a storm this far without having any control over our lives and what we do with it. If we look in the mirror, we notice from our faces how wearied and aged we already are. People go away for holidays in the island but rarely find happiness and come back dissappointed. Happiness does not come from what we want; it derives from accepting what we are engaged in doing. A calm, peaceful, mindful and patience mind can only enable us to see these things clearly. Our upbringing has rarely taught us these fundamentals of life and it looks as if we have been provoked to be greedy, materialistic and selfish. The logical and rational Buddhist philosophy, meditation and way of life can help you come to realize and develop a self-discipline to overcome these negativities. Cost: $ 110 members and concession $150 general public Venue: Bahai School Yerrinbool Date: Friday 5 - Monday 8 June 1992 Enquiries: Lama Choedak, Sakya Losal Choe Dzong, Canberra, Ph. (06) 292 8150 Jane Miknius, Co-ordinator Sakya Tharpa Ling, Sydney Ph. (02) 818 3695 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- end of file

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