Thursday, December 22, 2011

Standing Still In The Dark

Solstice and equinox ceremonies seem to draw a more heterogenous crowd - maybe people's wish to mark the change of the season overcomes their resistance to our kind of ritual, or maybe they are hoping for something completely pagan. Either way, we had a nice candle-lit gathering in the courtyard yesterday evening, with a few first timers, as well as the more familiar faces; I was happy to see a handful of Young Urban Zen people also in attendance.
We had a bit of a doshi shortage to contend with for the ceremony - Paul is on vacation, Rosalie in seclusion with dharma transmission-related activities, Blanche was off at the airport meeting grand-daughter and great grand-daughter, Jana attending the memorial for the homeless who have died on the streets this year at City Hall, Vicki teaching yoga. Happily Tova was very willing to step in and lead us.
Dinner afterwards also had a celebratory feel; Hanukkah candles were lit, but it was notably the day that monks came up from Tassajara, so there was as always much energy from seeing old friends again after their three months of intense practice. Actually, I was impressed with how many of the folks from Tassajara sat in the afternoon, came to lecture in the evening or followed the morning schedule. This is more than I ever did when I was on vacation after practice period.

Tova and part of the assembly

Very much liking the low light capabilities of the X10

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