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    Ajahn Chah

    We must learn to let go of conditions and not try to oppose or resist them. And yet we plead with them to comply with our wishes. We look for all sorts of means to organize them or make a deal with them. If the body gets sick and is in pain, we don't want it to be so, so we look for various sutras to chant. We don't want the body to be in pain. We want to control it. These sutras become some form of mystical ceremony, getting us even more entangled in clinging. This is because we chant them in order toward off illness, to prolong life and so on. Actually the Buddha gave us these teachings in order to help us know the truth of the body, so that we can let go and give up our longings. But we end up chanting them to increase our delusion.

    Update for: 9th December 2019

    >> Busy Bodhinyanarama
    There always seems to be a busy 'rush' after vassa ends. Also the 'Christmas is Coming!' energy flows in as well. The long spell of dry weather has meant we have been especially busy outdoors. So... there hasn't a news update for quite a while; no shortage of news just not enough time to share it with you. The November retreat went very well; thanks to all involved. Other scheduled events have continued as usual. The dana roster continues to work well; thanks to all of you who support that.

    >> New Year Retreat
    December 26th - January 3rd. With nearly three weeks to go accommodation is almost full. Even allowing for cancellations we will soon go to: 'waiting list only.' You can also come (quietly) during the day to join and go home in the evening. We will have open, dorm-style accommodation available for new year's eve; be sure to bring your own bedding. Use the booking form to book accommodation. Allocation preference is given to those staying the full term.

    >> Wheel Accessible Track
    We have had such an incredible run of good weather and work on forming the new tracks is complete with gravel added and drainage done. There are still some tidy-up-around-the-edges work needing to be done but the end result is very satisfactory. We were not only blessed by the weather but we had a good number of lay guests to support the work and their energy and enthusiasm really added. Thanks to all. photos

    >> Stupa Mural
    It has been a year since we had the stupa dedication ceremony and *still* the mural is not finished. The artist in Thailand has been very slow but... there is progress. photo There is no indication as to when it will be complete but - we have waited this long so a bit more will not be a problem. It would be nice to have it in place before winter 2020 but... life is uncertain.

    >> Anagarika Ordination
    Jet was with us for several months earlier in the year and then moved to Auckland to spend the vassa at Vimutti monastery. He then moved back here with the same, if not more, enthusiasm to join the sangha. He took anagarika precepts on Wednesday and we wish him every happiness in his new life.

    >> Lay Steward
    Some of you may remember Beat from his stay last year? Since he left he has been traveling to different monasteries in Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Thailand and has come back to stay. A year, to 'see how that goes' - and then? Who knows? He is a keen dhamma practitioner, is quite 'handy' and an all-round nice guy. We welcome him into the resident community.

    >> Many Monks
    We will be quite full this summer, with both laity and monastics. Beat brings our lay resident team up to four. Ajahn Sambodhi will be back, long-term, on Tuesday. Ajahn Kongrit will be here next Wednesday for four months. He will be arriving with Ajahn Supot who will stay with us for three weeks. Ajahn Joe is currently in Thailand and we already have his NZ visa for another year. Venerable Buddhisaro will be here next month staying for four months. In March we will have Ajahn Meng and Luang Por Lai coming for a week. 'Sometime' in Jan,Feb,March we will have Luang Por Piek and Ajahn Kosavaro here for a short stay. There will be more details, especially regarding teachings from these monks, as the year progresses. Not much of it left :)

    >> Ajahn Kusalo
    He keeps talking about 'retirement' and old age. Wheel access to his kuti? It's all real enough but details are sparse - evolving. In the short term... he will be going to Thailand for Luang Por Chah's memorial and then on to Sri Lanka for a six week tudong (walkabout); no doubt there will be lots of photos of that trip. Back on March 2nd. Ajahn Sambodhi will be the senior monk during this time. If we continue to get more monks then delegation is the plan. AjK has no thought to be based anywhere other than at Bodhinyanarama but - stepping back. Aiming at less responsibility and more opportunities for dhamma.

    >> Stop Press
    Through Saturday night and Sunday the skies over Stokes Valley raged with lightning and thunder - and RAIN. One of those 'once in a 100 years' deluges. Most of our infrastructure is fine but there is a large slip at the top of the carpark - what a mess.
    Also in the disaster deparment is Wat Buddha Dhamma in Sydney - raging bush fires video with several buildings destroyed. This life is fragile.


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