April will follow the usual form with a couple of additions.
There will two day retreats on the 11th and the 29th. As part of the tuesday retreat I will be doing the Renewal of Precepts Ceremony to coincide with Jukai week at Throssel.
On the 4th there is an ‘Introductory Evening’. In relation to the Introductory sessions I would like to introduce some classes for those new to this practice. On the 21st as part of the Friday evening group meeting there will be an Introduction to the Buddhist Precepts. This is open to all of course but tailored to those with no or very little experience. The Buddhist precepts can be seen as ethical and moral guidelines which help to put our meditation practice into context when it comes to action. Meditation and the Precepts work in concert each flowing into the other. I will also be giving classes on ‘Meditation in daily life’, where the focus is on establishing a daily meditation practice within our day to day lives. Because they are part of a regular group evening there will be experienced meditators present who might like to share their thoughts aswell.
March follows the usual pattern with normal group evenings and mornings. There are two day retreats planned onTuesday 14th and Saturday 25th. Please ring or email ahead if possible and bring some lunch to share if you can manage it. On the 19th we will be celebrating the Festival of Avalokiteshwara. No need to book. On the 7th we will be holding an Introductory evening for those new to this practice.
Photo of the altar statue by Julius Welby.
A warm welcome is extended to Rev Gareth Milliken who is shortly to arrive to become the new Prior of Reading Buddhist Priory, beginning March 1st.
As I prepare to return to the monastery, Throssel Hole Buddhist Abbey, I am wishing you well and real success in life: may the road rise with you. In gassho, Rev Jishin.
On Sunday 27th November, we celebrated the life and teaching of Reverend Master Jiyu Kennett, who is the Founder of our Order. The morning ceremony included readings of her teachings which were chosen by sangha members and a recording of “The Sunrise Comes”, music by RM Jiyu Kennett with the last stanza of The Light of Asia by Sir Edwin Arnold.
Here are most of us at the end of a weekend of meditation at Alton Abbey, Hampshire. We meditate in the old chapel on the grounds and board in a section of the monastery. The Anglican Benedictine monks were as always very welcoming. Their giving in service to others is a privelege to see in its completeness, and is true teaching. Really it’s something to experience, having many aspects; words can’t convey it adequately.
To go to unfamiliar surroundings-with others as a group to sit zazen-is conducive to stepping outside our usual mind-energy fields. This is, I think, what we want and know to be the right purpose of retreat. It is a kind of relaxing which brings with it the potential to focus and really look and see for ourselves. We hope to return next year.
The next, similar weekend retreat will be 8th – 11th June, at The Monastery of Our Lady and St. Bernard, near Stroud, Gloucestershire. It will be advertised nearer to June in the new year on the website, and is open to anyone who has attended an introduction session and can sit zazen several times in a day.
Priory front door welcome
For most of October, the Prior will be spending time at Throssel Hole Buddhist Abbey and Reverend Gareth Milliken will be the resident monk at the Priory. Rev. Gareth is a senior monk of the Order and visited the Priory for the first time earlier this year. He looks forward to being here and meeting sangha and is very willing to talk to you and offer you support where he can.
As well as the usual weekly events, he is offering a Festival for Bodhidharma, on Sunday 9th October, following the usual group meditation periods. There will be a Day Retreat on Tuesday 18th and a Day Retreat on Saturday 29th October. The introductory evening with Rev. Gareth is on Tuesday 11th October. See calendar. Full details of these kinds of events are available elsewhere on the website.
Rev. Mugo is a disciple of Rev Master Jiyu Kennett and the international Lay Minister Advisor for the OBC. She is visiting the Priory next week and will be present at the
Wednesday group evening- 10th
Friday group evening- 12th
Sunday group morning- 14th, followed by a barbeque at the Priory. Details under Sunday in the calendar.
She looks forward to meeting newcomers and catching up with old Friends.
At the end of June, six of us travelled from the Priory to Throssel Hole Buddhist Abbey for a long weekend, Thursday to Monday. We travelled in two cars via the M6, taking two breaks, and seven hours in all to get there. A lovely journey, all the better for such good company.
The Dharma Weekend was lead by Reverend Roland Watson. The Sunday Festival was to celebrate Manjusri Boddhisattva and was followed by a dharma talk by Rev. Roland.
After a smashing Sunday lunch, we had a leisurely walk in the valley with Rev. Mugo, Rev. Olwen and Rev. Gareth who can be seen in the photo.
The trip was a pleasure for us all.
The Monastery of Our Lady and St. Bernard nestles in a beautiful valley in the Cotswolds. With the warm hospitality of the Bernardine Sisters, we were able once again to enjoy and appreciate a weekend of meditation. There were seventeen of us mainly from the Telford and Reading congregations and the retreat was lead by Rev. Saido Kennaway and Rev.Jishin Kinson.
We have booked again for 8th-11th June, 2017. Details will appear on the website in early 2017.