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NW Dharma News

Summer 2020, Volume 33, #1

NW Dharma News

NWDA’s New Website Group and Event Listings!

The new group member directory will include simpler and more comprehensive searches, an easier registration process, and linkage with Google Maps

Your Northwest Dharma Association (NWDA) website is getting a 2020 technology boost that will make it easier for group leaders to list events, and for Sangha members and anyone else to utilize the site. For Dharma groups: Dharma group members will find the new system far easier for building and editing profiles of their groups, and for sharing lineages, practice schedules, and contact information. Leaders will be able to more easily enter and edit calendar listings, with less confusion and fewer problems needing solutions from NWDA volunteer staff.  Groups will find it easier to promote their practice schedules and events…

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Dharma Education

Pariyatti Books Expanded During the Pandemic

Pariyatti’s efforts to respond to the growing pandemic started when a pilgrim felt dizzy climbing Vulture Peak, shown. Luckily, she didn’t have COVID-19

For Pariyatti the COVID-19 era began with a 5 a.m. distress phone call. It was January 27, and 16 pilgrims were one week into their three-week pilgrimage through India and Nepal. Calling from India, the Pariyatti team member said one of the pilgrims had become dizzy while climbing to Vulture’s Peak, one of the Buddha’s favorite places to meditate. She said, “Could it be the novel coronavirus?” Washington-based Pariyatti, the nation’s largest distributor of Theravada books and materials, organizes several pilgrimages each year for vipassana meditators in the tradition of S.N. Goenka. This journey catered specifically to Chinese-speaking participants. Luckily…

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Dharma in Canada

Children Learning to Notice what They Notice:Introducing Mindfulness at the Art Gallery

Margo McLoughlin telling a story with musical accompaniment

Between October of last year and the middle of March, more than 700 children came to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria to participate in a new program called “The Art and Heart of Mindfulness: Discovering the Gift of Perception.” The gallery sits at the top of Moss Street, a short drive from downtown Victoria in British Columbia. Surrounded by Garry oak and Douglas fir, the original building is a Victorian house, beautifully trimmed in grey-green and burgundy. Beside it stands a low structure of post-modern concrete. Art galleries are all about looking and seeing, which makes them perfect sites…

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Compassionate Action

Breathing with the Disagreeable

Selfie at the Lynching Memorial in Montgomery, Alabama

The Deep Time Liberation Retreat, for descendants of the African diaspora, was cancelled due to the pandemic.  Ancestral healing would have to wait.  Visiting slave plantations with the support of Black practitioners and teachers was not going to happen. Now I had two weeks of unplanned time off from the hospital.  I was sad to miss this retreat, and yet grateful for the respite from the current healthcare grind. I decided to get up early every morning and walk around parts of my Seattle Maple Leaf neighborhood that I had not yet explored.  In that process I discovered Kingfisher Natural…

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Dharma Healing, Arts

Sue Tomita: A Deep River of Loving Compassion

As a co-founder of Asian Counseling and Referral Services, Sue remained active, here in 2017 May Day March

Whether family or friend, to be with Susan Kiyoko Tomita was to bask in her warmth and care, rooted in her deep meditation practice. As Sue passed away Sunday evening, May 10, 2020, at 74 years old from pancreatic cancer, she was serene throughout.     With great forethought Sue wrote her own memorial, understanding the reality of her diagnosis, which she shared with her mother who had died years before. In her memorial Sue wrote only of her family, her love of her partner Gregory, of her sons Jason and Mizuho, and of her beautiful grandsons, Max and Julian. She…

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Sangha News

Seattle Betsuin Taps its People to go Digital

Rinban Kusunoki chanting a sutra during one of the online Sunday services Seattle Betsuin has been offering since late March

In early March, the Seattle Betsuin Buddhist temple closed its doors to visitors and temple members in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. But since March the temple has been re-opening through innovative uses of online technology, a transformational step for a traditional organization that offered its first service 119 years ago. Seattle Betsuin is the oldest Buddhist group in the city. The March closure was significant for temple members, because it meant cancelling the annual salmon dinner fundraiser, numerous classes, social programs, and perhaps most impactful, the Seattle Seafair-sanctioned Seattle Bon Odori Festival normally held in July. While the doors…

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What's Happening

Dharma Relief: Let’s get medical supplies to where they’re needed!

Several Buddhist groups are organizing a charity relief program to help deliver medical supplies to where they are needed. You can help by donating and by coordinating supplies. Visit DharmaRelief.org

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Buddhist Centers Respond to Pandemic

Responses to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic are shifting rapidly. Many centers have suspended public events and are streaming programs via Zoom, YouTube, Facebook, and other video platforms. The following are a few announcements made in recent days. Check with your local center to confirm whether events are being held.

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Finding upsides in digital sangha when we have no choice

Practical tips on leading meditation and discussion using video conferencing.

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Group Members

Snow Buddha Meditation

Snow Buddha Meditation & Yoga offers mindfulness meditation and mindfulness yoga classes, based on Theravada Buddhist teachings in combination with Hatha Yoga and Western scientific research into Mindfulness.

Tradition: Theravada, Vipassana || Location: Anchorage, AK

Foundation for Active Compassion

Our Mission: To empower people with profound, accessible spiritual practices that support their individual and collective work to become better people and to make a better world. We provide powerfully transformative practices from Tibetan Buddhism, adapted into new forms that can meet the hearts and minds of people from all backgrounds and faiths, so as to help them bring out the best in themselves within relationships, service, and social action. Through practices that awaken the heart of innate wisdom and compassion, we also provide methods that can support a complete path of spiritual awakening in our time. Guided meditations of...

Tradition: Tibetan Buddhism || Location: Portland, OR

Pacific Hermitage

Nestled in the Columbia River Gorge along a forested stretch of White Salmon's Jewett Creek is the home of a small group of Theravada Buddhist monks. The Pacific Hermitage is a branch of Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery in Redwood Valley, California. The Hermitage is a place of seclusion where the monks devote their lives to meditation and simple living. The monks walk daily through the town of White Salmon to accept donations of food, and are available to the community as a spiritual resource. They also teach and lead Buddhist meditation locally and in the region.

Tradition: Theravada || Location: White Salmon, WA

SAMGardnerCenter

The Seattle Art Museum collection includes many important Buddhist paintings, sculpture, calligraphy, hand scrolls, and more—a selection is on view at its Asian Art Museum location. The Gardner Center hosts visiting scholars, writers, films, and artists for public events exploring Buddhist arts and cultures. While the Seattle Asian Art Museum is closed for renovation (reopening late 2019), our programs are held in various locations. The SAM Gardner Center co-sponsors festivals and other educational events with the Northwest Dharma Association.

Tradition: Non-sectarian || Location: Seattle, WA

West Seattle Buddhist Meditation

We meet at the Westside UU in Seattle to meditate and discuss the Dharma. The group is a combination of UU members and community members. You are welcome to join us. For now, we are meeting on Zoom, Tuesday nights at 7PM. You can join us at https://zoom.us/j/377575371

Tradition: Insight / Theravada Thai Forest || Location: Seattle, WA

Tergar Meditation Community of Oregon

Under the guidance of Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, the Tergar Meditation Community of Oregon holds regular teachings and community events in and around Portland, Eugene and Medford, Oregon. As a community of friends exploring the practice of meditation, we gather regularly to practice, study, and host regular visits by Mingyur Rinpoche. We also offer retreats and seminars on the practice of meditation and the fundamentals of Buddhist practice. Mingyur Rinpoche’s approach to meditation focuses on the practice of mindfulness, which unlocks the door to a calm mind, compassionate heart and insight into the challenges of day-to-day life. Rinpoche’s teachings emphasize universal...

Tradition: Tibetan Buddhism || Location: Portland, OR

Metta Programs

Our community extends globally, coming together on teacher-led retreats, in online practice, and in local peer-led groups. We warmly welcome all people to explore with us the practices of Insight Dialogue and Dharma Contemplation, and teachings of relational Dhamma.

Tradition: Theravada || Location: Seattle, WA

Ligmincha Northwest

We meet weekly to practice Bon Buddhist healing meditations. We also have the good fortune of listening to and participating with our teacher and the international sangha in a regularly scheduled monthly webcast. This is followed with discussion and potluck. The dates for the webcasts are posted at the website, www.ligmincha.org The Olympia practice group also shares viewing films that have some relevance to practices and we are currently doing a book study group, with one of Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche's books. Each November we have the good fortune of sponsoring a weekend teaching and practice retreat with Geshe Tenzin Wangyal...

Tradition: Bon Buddhist || Location: Olympia, WA

Go to the Group Directory page for more!