Newsletter Editorial

From Jnanadhara

January 2020

Dear Friends,

As we all know the Buddha emphasised the truth of impermanence, how all things change. The present time is certainly a moment when change is very much in the air around the DBC.

Farewell Prajnagita

Change often means parting with friends and early in the New Year we’ll be saying farewell to Prajnagita. Some time ago she was asked to join the team that helps women prepare for ordination at Tiratanaloka in Wales and she has very generously decided to invest her considerable talents in that project.

Prajnagita has been a member of the centre team for over seven years and has made a substantial positive impact in that time. Through her deep engagement with the Centre, she has helped move our collective endeavours to new levels of harmony, effectiveness and inspiration.

For example, she has revolutionised women’s activities in the Dublin Sangha. In the time she has been involved, there have been a number of women who she helped prepare for ordination, including Atulyamitra, for whom she acted as private preceptor. She has also been a mainstay of the women’s residential community where many women have found a context for more intensive practice. She has acted as Women’s Mitra Convenor and there are now more women Mitras than ever before. So she leaves a thriving women’s wing.

One of the reasons for this thriving is her consummate skill in communicating the Dharma. She has the ability to teach at all levels and communicates with a clarity and warmth that touches people and inspires them to commit.

Prajnagita has initiative and vision in spades. Many of the new initiatives that have helped develop our activities have been her ideas, for example, the centre support team of volunteers that look after the day-to-day running of the Centre. She was instrumental in providing the vision for that team, and for setting it up. She has also been a most reliable, sensible and creative Centre trustee.

There is more I could say about her achievements and qualities but I also want to say that personally, I shall miss her an awful lot, and I know many others in our Sangha will too. I’ve bent her ear many a time and she has offered wise and compassionate counsel. We’ve also had a good laugh together.

She certainly will be missed! I’m sure I’m not the only one who will want to celebrate Prajnagita and send her off in style. To that end, we are planning a farewell evening for the whole Sangha on Friday 24th January. All are welcome.

New DBC Programme for 2020

What are the best activities to run in the Centre and how should we run them? This is one of the perennial questions that face an urban Buddhist centre like ours. Though things are already going well, over the past months we’ve been asking the question of how we could do even better with the resources that we have. Accordingly, we have re-visioned our programme of classes, courses and events. From January, you’ll notice a few changes!

There are a few things that we are trying to achieve. Firstly, we are endeavouring to give people more of a taste of Sangha from their first involvement, and make it easier for people to continue with Centre activities after they do a newcomer’s course. To that end, on Wednesdays we will be running introductory courses, a drop-in and various follow-on courses on the same night.

On Tuesday Nights in the large shrine room there will be a long meditation and then a Puja, along the lines of what we have now, with a Dharma talk once a month. In the small shrine room, there will be an on-going series of courses. Check out the pages of this newsletter and the website for more details.

New Centre Manager

Another change I’m delighted to inform you of is the appointment of Daniel Canning as our new centre manager. Daniel got involved with DBC about three years ago and since then has thrown himself wholeheartedly into Triratna. He is a bright, intelligent and friendly young man who has a lot to offer. I very much look forward to him joining us on the centre team and seeing what we can achieve together. Welcome Daniel!

Declan & Kevin to Guhyaloka

And last but my no means least, Declan Brennan and Kevin Mullaney are both heading off to Guyhaloka for four months this spring to get ordained, so come July we’ll have two brand new order members in our midst! We’ll be rejoicing in them to send them off on Friday 6th March.

Wishing you all the very best for the holiday season.