The mind, pure as the dust of bones, cries out
the Name bestowed by grace; and we who stand
in reverence can also add our shout
as now the Buddha takes us by the hand
to lead us to that paradise beyond
where broken bodies can repay the debt
of gratitude and ardently respond
midst beams of gold before the sun has set.
BIENFAITS DE L'AIR
Force invisible et toute pénétrante,
Tu viens à nous sur les ailes puissantes
De l’oiseau Garouda,
En nous insufflant l’indispensable prana.
Tu nous entraînes dans ton élan.
La légèreté devient allègement.
La respiration se fait inspiration.
Qu’importent les vents contraires,
Et les nuages menaçants
Ton souffle toujours
Nous emporte au-delà de nous-mêmes.
- Annette Tamuly Jung
Invisible and penetrating force,
you come to us on the powerful wings
of the Garuda bird
inspiring us with indispensable prana.
You train us in your élan.
Your lightness lightens us.
Respiration becomes inspiration.
No matter contrary winds
or menacing clouds,
your breath always
carries us beyond ourselves.
DB: Close to where I live in France there is a community for retired Buddhists called Oasis de Longue Vie. The community is the brain child of Lama Sherab who saw a need to elderly people of Buddhist persuasion to spend their later years together with like-minded friends without dependence upon a state service or private institution. The settlement is a self-governing community, an association of the residents established in French law. After a slow start some years ago the project is now a success. There are seven residents, soon to be nine, with a short waiting list. The maximum size has been agreed to be twelve. Each resident or couple has a small self-contained house. Participation in communal events is optional. Some members are more able-bodied than others and there is much mutual aid. The grounds are a small attractive park, the location deep in the countryside. There is a stupa, a meditation hall, a swimming pool, and spaces for outdoor gatherings. It is a community rather than a centre, catering for its residents. Residents buy into the project investing capital that is used to build the dwellings.
Oasis website: https://www.bodhicharya-france.org/index.php/fr/le-centre-monastique/autres-associations/l-oasis-de-longue-vie
Interview with Annette at Oasis: http://www.123siteweb.fr/SeniorsduDharma/
Now as Oasis 1 is approaching full capacity, there is talk of creating an Oasis 2 along rather similar lines. I am involved in these negotiations and I have ten hectare of attractive land which I could put forward if others will join me by investing in the project. I have always wished that my place eventually become a Buddhist community and this type of project offers a realistic prospect of success. It has several advantages over Oasis 1 in that the land is bigger, the times have changed and the experience of Oasis 1 is behind us. When Oasis 1 began they had to find and buy land. They have built up a great wealth of knowledge on how to navigate French bureaucracy, obtain necessary services and how to organise. In these covid times, people are anxious to move out of big cities, so small rural settlements are now in fashion. Another big advantage is that prospective residents can go and see Oasis 1 and so experience what an established community is like. And, of course, the two communities can help each other.
The community will be open to Buddhists of any school. Although aimed primarily at older people there will be no age limit, so some younger people might also join. A balance of ages has some advantages. So now we are looking for prospective residents and benefactors. If you might be interested in joining or supporting such a scheme please get in touch. Establishing the project will be a slow process as finance needs to be found and new buildings need to be constructed. Registering an interest early is a good idea. Then come and visit and see for yourself. We c an make something very special together.
Enquiries: Jisshas <[email protected]