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Web of Connection Newsletter
October, 2019

 
Our aim is to foster a greater awareness of humanity's capacity to live in harmony with each other and the planet we share. We do this through educational programs that integrate body, mind and spirit and demonstration projects that increase knowledge, skills and attitudes for healthy, sustainable practices.
  

Acts of Restorative Kindness
 
During the summer months in India, the monsoon rains come down heavily on the land. The farmers take advantage of the moisture to plant rice in their paddy fields. Rice has been an important staple crop for the people of this area for centuries. If the rains don't come or if animals or humans damage the crops, famine is likely. In an attempt to protect the crops from damage, the Buddha requested his monastic followers to not go wandering through the fields during the monsoon season as they commonly did throughout the other parts of the year. Instead, the monastics were to stay put in one area, living and practicing as a community in harmony with each other and the land. After the rainy season was over, they could resume their travels by foot. 

Imagine staying in one location without access to the conveniences of washing machines, stores for supplies or entertainments. The roof over your head would be a basic thatch or bamboo with no air conditioning, electricity or gas stove. Your medicine would come from the native plants around you. You would have no choice but to endure the elements however they came. This is this simplicity of renunciation that the monastic community embraced. At the end of the three month period, their robes would be tattered and their supplies quite low. For this reason, the lay supporters would offer to restore the needs of the community through their acts of kindness (see Kathina announcement below).

In our modern day Western culture, we have become so used to having conveniences at our finger tips. While we rely on the gifts of nature and the work of many hands for our survival, we often don't recognize this due to our separation from their source. As both biological and social systems become weaker and eventually break down, we won't be able to ignore our interdependence any more.  What, then, will provide us with safety and nourishment? Will there be an ark (as in the Hebrew Bible) for us to stow away in? Or will we meet the same fate as those on the Titanic who kept partying while their "unsinkable" vessel went down?

At Deer Park, we now have a sign that reads, "This is an Ark". A few visitors actually thought it was in reference to the Biblical text, but it's not. This Ark stands for "Acts of Restorative Kindness". You can find out more about the organization that came up with this concept here. The idea is that we can help to promote biodiversity as we "re-wild" our yards, providing healthy habitats free of chemicals for the native flora and fauna that lived here before us. We can do this alongside having a vegetable garden. In fact, the vegetable garden can also be a restorative act as we build soil health and diversity (which has been greatly compromised through poor agricultural practices) by honoring nature's ways. Both are essential if we want life to flourish into the future. 

If you would like to find out how you can extend acts of restorative kindness to our shared space at Deer Park or at your own home, please contact Cindi at webofconnection@gmail.com
                                                                   
Kathina (Alms Giving) Ceremony
October 12th (evening) and 13th (day)
METTA VIHARA
 8371 Pawnee Lane, Niwot, CO 80503


 
You are cordially invited to become a part of our annual Kathina ceremony. This ceremony is a traditional way to support the sangha of monks and nuns by offering the basic requisites of food, clothing, shelter and medicine. It is considered to be the most sacred, powerful and meritorious event in the Buddhist calendar with an unbroken tradition of history for over 2550 years. In attendance this year will be three bhikkhus and three bhikkhunis.
 
Program 

Saturday, 12 th October, 6.00-8.00 PM Pirith Chanting and Blessings.  (Light dinner will be provided)
 
13 th Sunday, 10:30 am-2:00 pm, to include traditional chanting, meal offering, Dhamma talk and discussion
 
For those who wish to come from Colorado Springs, talk to Ayya about car-pooling. For more information about the event, your may   contact Chamila Ranaweera at rcranaweera@yahoo.com

The Web of Connection wishes to extend deep gratitude toward all who continue to support the community as it grows in breadth and depth. The generosity that "pays it forward" is what makes it possible for our programs to continue to be of benefit to all beings. May your hearts be nourished by the kindness that you share. 
 


                         
                 

                    Web of Connection Welcomes You 

Saturday Meditation and Inquiry, from 4-6 pm weekly. All are welcome to attend these gatherings where we develop meditation skills, investigate Dharma themes and discover how they apply to our daily lives.


Dharma Contemplation, 6:30-8:00 pm, 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the monthThis is a contemplative practice that gives each participant the opportunity to be still, reflect and respond to a particular text within a supportive structure. Listening to the responses of other participants also helps to expand one's perspective and understanding. Each time we meet, a different passage will be explored. All are welcome; no prior experience is necessary. For more information on the methodology of Dharma Contemplation, see this link.


Deer Park Learning Center is located at 15 Columbia Road, Colorado Springs, CO 80904. The house and meditation hall are set back off of Columbia Road, just North of Pikes Peak and before you get to Buffalo Lodge. Turn onto the alleyway and then into the driveway on the left.

                             
                             
  We hope to see you soon!

 
Web of Connection is a 501(c)(3) federal non-profit organization. All donations that you make are tax deductible.                       EIN#: 81-4552275 

As an alms mendicant living outside the support structure of a monastery, Ayya Dhammadhira relies on the ongoing support of individuals like you to continue her practice and service in community. Your monthly contributions are much appreciated. 

Your generosity is what makes it possible for our programs to continue to touch the lives of many people. As our community develops, we will be able to provide a more extensive example of a sustainable lifestyle that nourishes body, mind and spirit. Each one of us is an integral part of this WEB. Thank you for your support!
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Web of Connection · P.O. Box 6848 · Colorado Springs, CO 80934 · USA

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