Sunday, December 21, 2014



Last weekend a few of us spent the afternoon exploring the past year in a very structured manner. We began reflecting on what intentions we had for the year, then identified who contributed and very specifically, what spiritual intentions we had this past year. We finished up with identifying the momentum which we experience as we move into our coming year. This is our preparation for an intention-setting exercise scheduled for January.
This workshop came at the end of my own reflections on my personal and Red Maple’s collective year. I was struck at the huge changes which characterized this past year. This included the closing of our space in Renfrew and the establishment of our temple space in Pembroke. I didn’t have any sense of the same level of change for the coming year but could recognize the flow of momentum into 2015.
I was also struck by the impact of the many people who have contributed over the past year. People who have participated in practice and events, who helped with packing and re-settling, who contributed ideas, advice and encouragement.
I was particularly reminded that this reflective exercise is one of looking at intention, direction and momentum, not tallying up accomplishments. We must always be careful not to get caught in claiming credit for events and successes. We apply our efforts in a larger context, one which includes the efforts of countless other beings. Of course this includes our friends and supporters, but as Buddhists, we cannot ignore the efforts of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Our process is not to “set our goals” but to align ourselves with the expressed intentions of those beings, to collaborate with them for the benefit of all.

Yours in the Dharma,                          
Innen, doshu
om namo amida butsu 



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