Progress Update: July 20, 2008

>> Hip Hip Hoo-HAY!
Last weekend’s hay day was a huge success. First thanks goes to our neighbour Doug Goodfellow who lent us his tractor when ours broke down Friday morning. We couldn’t have moved so much without it. Second to Keith for his “Flying Carpet” hay wagon that let us zoom large amounts of hay out of the barn at rapid speed. And of course great thanks to everyone who got in there and pitched and pitched. One more day should do it. (check out the “Hay Diaries” photo album)

>> The Last Straw
It’s time for the final Hay Day, Sunday 27 July. If all goes as planned, we will surely get the last hay out. Bring work clothes. There are lots of other projects to do if you can’t be around the hay.

>> News from Ajahn Kusalo:
Greetings from down under where I am currently staying with my mother. It has been several weeks since leaving Tisarana and the itinerary has been quite full. First a week at Abhayagiri Monastery in California to take part in a bhikkhu ordination ceremony. This was my first visit and I was delighted to see how well established the sangha is and how healthy ongoing developments appear. Then to New Zealand where a return visit to Vimutti Monastery, south of Auckland, was similarly delightful. So much has been achieved since I was last there in 2004. Kutis built, thousands of trees planted, roadways extended, etc.. Some time with family and friends in Auckland was followed by several days at the Auckland Buddhist Vihara, meeting with old dhamma friends from some 20 years ago. Then down to Wellington for a stay at Bodhinyanarama, the monastery where I ordained. Things have noticeable improved there since Ajahn Thiradhammo took up residence and I was also pleased to witness an old friend taking anagarika ordination. Across the Tasman Sea to Sydney where a series of talks had been organized at a city centre. Up to Brisbane and a few days at Dhammagiri monastery, west of the city. I spent several months of 2006 with this community in their city centre and it was lovely to see the shift out of the city to a rural forest of 78 acres. I will be back there in a few days. My travels have been beneficial on many levels but I look forward to being “back home.” More Oz. news later.

>> From the book _The_Stillness_of_Being_, by Ajahn V:
If we are willing to look into our conflicts, to open our minds to conflict, then we can discover something, can’t we? Whereas if we make a judgment that we should be someone who never has fear or anger — should always be bright and beautiful and charming — then when the opposite comes, we tend to try to push it away. There is no reflection. There is just some kind of idea or expectation that we attach to and then frustration when this can’t be met. But if we look at it differently we see that experience is just a process, and in that process there is something that we have to discover, something we have to look at. We have to understand what the cause of conflict is.