Dharmavidya's Pastoral Letter
March 31st, 2013
have just completed the Mondo Sesshin. This was attended by a dozen
people including five nationalities, a diversity that is not uncommon on
Amida events. Mondo is about encounter and encounter is about meeting
one another in faith rather than in a state of clashing egos. How
fragile, brittle or bristling we can sometimes be! However, coming
together in faith we can help one another to pass beyond fear and enter
into an experience of deep confidence and entrustment.
I feel considerable satisfaction in the fact that we have, as a sangha,
evolved a style of practice that demonstrates our faith in a rather
robust manner such that those who came newly in our midst on this
occasion certainly felt that they were encountering "the real thing".
There is always a temptation in what some might call the contemporary
spiritual marketplace to water down the message so as to cater for a
wider public. I do feel that it is important to have some access points
for people who are of a more generic spiritual persuasion or,
alternatively, for those of a more secular turn of mind, but it is
essential that we retain also occasions when the undiluted faith and
practice are manifest and shared amongst us and this was one such
We are now moving towards the most important retreat in the Amida calendar, the Bodhi Retreat. This is a time of reflection and celebration as well as a time in the year when people receive ordination, become Amida shu members and take refuge. It is also an opportunity for the Sangha to come together to engage in an extended period of devotion and nembutsu practice.
I'm an Acharya (a senior teacher) with the Order of Amida Buddha, which is a Pureland Buddhist Order. I'm a minister, teach on-line and hold Pureland Buddhist sangha gatherings in Perth, Scotland. I mainly write about Buddhist matters and share the teachings of the Head of our Order, Dharmavidya David Brazier