Monday, 8 May 2017

A thought about sangha


Hi all.

In addition to my weekly update, I'd like to also say a word about sangha in the colder (non-daylight savings) months. 

Often what we find during this part of the year is that people can find it a bit hard to leave the comfort of their warm homes to come out for the evening, and we find that the group shrinks a bit. 

Small groups are in fact nice in some ways, as we tend to have quite lovely discussions. However the down side is that I feel a bit bad for the teachers who come to join us, sometimes traveling quite a distance to get here. 

Since daylight savings ended, we've had the usual shrinkage. To roll with this, we are going to have a bit more of an unstructured program through the darker months (May-Oct) where we may not always have an organised talk.

Our group is not, and will never be one that obliges people to come. Our practice is one driven by personal commitment and value, with no levers pulled or guilt trips administered if people don't turn up. We're not about to change that, and so having a looser program during this period seems the best way to adapt to changing patterns of attendance. 

At the same time, I'd also like to say a few words about the nature of sangha. Like everything, it is a dependent arising...that is, it only exists due to the arising of certain conditions. The most important condition is that people are moved to participate. There is a yin and a yang of participation in community (sangha). It contributes to our lives, but it can only do that if we also contribute to its life.

And remember....we have nice heaters :)
Warmly
Lenore

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