Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Home for Good: Modules Homework

Training for Home for Good in Oregon begins with self-directed modules found here.

For those who are interested, we're having an informal gathering on Tuesday, December 11, 7 pm, at Sckavone's Restaurant, 4100 SE Division. Sckavone's has free wifi available, so if you have a laptop, bring it, or bring a printout of the modules. We will have one printout available, hoping to save paper. Let's work on these modules together, feel free to come if you've started but haven't finished, or haven't started, or want to talk with others who are planning to get involved with a Buddhist component of Home For Good. (Sckavone's has decent diner food and Italian sodas.)

After that, we'll see if we can get enough people interested in the volunteer training. They say they will arrange one for us if we have at least 5 people.

For more information on just what's going on here, check this out.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Discussion Gathering: Yearly Reflection

Annual Reflection
Sunday, December 9, 2007
2 pm

We have 6 gatherings a year, this will be our one gathering that deals with the business of the chapter. All who are interested in participating are welcome to attend.

We will reflect on these questions:
Is our leadership structure working?

  1. Is our decision-making process working? What has been useful, what has not been useful?
  2. What was our most meaningful activity of previous year?
  3. What challenged do we face as a chapter?
  4. Any other feedback? For the chapter? For BPF as a whole?

Responses to related questions last year can be found here.

Background on the questions:

1. Our leadership structure has been looser than we aimed for in the past. We've had a core group of 6 people, recently adding a 7th. These people were invited to be part of the core group as they'd already demonstrated a persistent interest in the routine activities and questions of the chapter.

All input is welcome, but this core group shares the commitment of somewhat regular communication regarding the doings of the chapter. This has helped to make decisions possible without bogging down the entire yahoo group, or pestering those members who don't wish to do decisions.

2. The core group emails each other privately about the decisions of the chapter. They let the yahoo group know about decisions, and feedback is welcome. Most decisions are straightforward. Decisions not so straightforward are opened up for wider discussion.

3. See the website archives for a review.

4. This could be an interesting and useful discussion.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Metta Sutta Peace March

5 pm
Wednesday, October 3
SW Corner of Pioneer Courthouse Square
Portland, Oregon

METTA (LOVING-KINDNESS) SUTTA TO BE CHANTED DURING PEACE MARCH IN SUPPORT OF BUDDHIST MONKS PROTESTING AGAINST BURMA’S OPPRESSIVE MILITARY JUNTA

The military junta in Burma has escalated its violent crackdown on peaceful pro-democracy demonstrators in the City of Rangoon, and other small towns throughout the country. Last month the military government more than doubled the cost of fuel and increased the cost of gas that powers public transportation buses five times, causing extreme hardship for the Burmese people already struggling to meet their survival needs. Mass protests were immediately quelled by riot police. In response to this violence, tens of thousands of highly revered Buddhist monks joined thousands of peaceful demonstrators last week in the streets of Rangoon. The military brutally suppressed the protest by firing into the crowds killing at least nine people including a Japanese photojournalist. To end the uprising, soldiers have invaded five Buddhist monasteries brutally beating and arresting hundreds of monks. Six Buddhist monks are known to have been killed thus far.

The military have surrounded neighborhoods and imposed strict curfews to curtail any further protests. In an attempt to stop communications with the outside world by citizen journalists, the military government has blocked all access to the internet, cell phones and landlines. Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Aung San Suu Kyi, the pro-democracy Burmese leader, remains in long-term house arrest.

As Buddhists, we can gather our voices together to pray for a nonviolent resolution to this conflict and send a clear message to our leaders that "The World is Watching."
  • We will meet at 5 pm at the southwest corner of Pioneer Courthouse Square, where the Burmese people of Portland are already gathering in protest.
  • We will walk down to Waterfront Park, along Naito, and return to the square, being mindful not to block pedestrian or vehicle traffic.
  • Monks will lead chanting of the Metta Sutta, the sutra being chanted by the monks in Burma, that expounds the qualities of loving-kindness.
  • We will alternate between chanting the sutra in Pali and English.
  • Other than chanting, this march will be a silent meditation vigil, following nonviolent principles.
  • Wear red to show your support.

Go to the Buddhist Peace Fellowship website for the metta sutta text in Pali and English http://www.bpf.org/html/whats_now/2007/burmaevents.html

Friday, September 21, 2007

Home For Good in Oregon

Informational gathering on Oregon Dept. of Justice's
Speaker: Rev. Furlton Burns, First Covenant Church
Regional Re-entry Chaplain
Friday, September 21, 7 pm
Portland Dharma Center, 2514 SE Madison St.

DRZC and BPF Portland invite any who wish to know more about Oregon Dept of Justice's program "Home For Good."

Ex-prisoners are less likely to commit crimes again if they are integrated safely into the community. "Home For Good" is Oregon's program that includes faith communities in that effort. Prisoners need the Three Refuges when they are in prison, and they need the Refuges when they are released. The time is ripe for a Buddhist welcome for them when they are released.

This could be the beginning of a Buddhist participation in Portland. Rev. Furlton will give information on the program, on becoming a chaplain and/or a volunteer in the program.

For a solid Buddhist program to flourish in Portland, participation by interested Buddhists across Sangha lines will be needed. Dharma Rain Zen Center is willing to take point, and welcomes potential volunteers from other communities.

It is the hope of BPF Portland that this could be the first in a series of Engaged Buddhist cooperative efforts. We will be glad to serve as a conduit for other aspects of Engaged Buddhism.

That link again: http://www.oregon.gov/DOC/TRANS/religious_services/rs_hgo_program.shtml


Sunday, September 09, 2007

Aristophanes' Peace

The Classic Greek Theatre of Oregon is presenting Aristophanes' Peace. It is outdoors, so showings are at 4 pm and some are at noon. BPF Portland has been invited to table: those tending the table are allowed in free, and other BPF members are offered tickets for half-price.

We could use some volunteers to tend our table for Saturday showings, and the weekday noon showings.

From the Reed College website:

Peace, directed by Keith Scales, is based on one of Aristophanes’ “wittiest and cleverest comedies.” The goddess Peace, long held prisoner by War, is rescued and restored to the world by a farmer riding a beetle—in this instance, a VW bug. Tickets: $20 general, $15 senior, $10 student; free to Reed students, staff, and faculty, with a current Reed i.d. Tickets at the door, or phone 503/258-9313.

September 8 & 9, 15 & 16, 22 & 23, and 29 & 30: 4 p.m., Cerf Amphitheatre.

September 20 & 21, and 26–28: noon, Cerf Amphitheatre.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki

This year BPF Portland was a co-sponsor of the event remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki here in Portland. I went to this for the first time. This was the 45th Annual Commemoration.

NW Tibetan Cultural Association Chanters began the ceremony with chants for peace from HH The Dalai Lama. There were speakers. They weren't just speakers...they were people who've walked their talk for years. I think they said Carol Urner from WILPF was in her eighties. There were singers, the Aurora Chorus. There was ceremony. There was an interactive art piece.

The first thing I did when I got there was create my peace prayer flag for the art project. There already were many flags that had been created at street fairs, school events, and other events.There were around 300 people there, I figured.

Many of my photos were too blurry due to low light. The dancing art piece called Harmos was an extra thing after the whole ceremony and speakers, so it was pretty dark by the end. The creator took words from the peace prayer flags and wove them into a poem that she intoned while the child dancers made the lotus bloom. I finally got around to playing with the photos, so here you have my August 5th experience:


Sunday, July 01, 2007

Gathering for Discussion: Coming Home Initiative


Listen to recording of Bhante Suhita Dharma and Alan Senauke among others speak about the California prison system and the BPF Coming Home Initiative
Sunday, July 22
2:30 to 4:30 pm
Belmont Library meeting room
We will listen as a group, then discuss. Some local prison program volunteers may talk about their experiences in Oregon. Click on the photo to link to the BPF Radio web page with this recording.
Visit BPF's information on it's Transformative Justice Program, formerly Prison Program, here.
Visit Oregon's Dept of Corrections here. Their Home for Good program could be a good entry point for Buddhists interested in welcoming people transition back into the community.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki

We are involved in 2 separate events related to the remembrance of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.


5th Annual 24 Hour Chant for Peace
Express your wish for peace at this interfaith event
sponsored by Great Vow Monastery
and the Northwest Dharma Assocation

Friday-Saturday, August 3-4
7 pm to 7 pm

Buddhist Peace Fellowship Portland
chants at 11 am Saturday

As wars and religious conflicts seem to be intensifying on our planet, it is important for different spiritual traditions to join together in a spirit of peace. Chanting is a powerful way to bring peace to oneself and to our world.

Peace arises from hearts that are open. At the 24-Hour Interfaith Chant for Peace, chanters from many religious traditions lead a continual flow of chants for peace, providing opportunity for people of diverse faiths to enter profound sacred space together.

Great Vow invites you to add your voice to the interfaith community of those dedicated to non-violence in the world. Come for a few hours or the full twenty-four. They offer a 24-hour buffet and beds for napping.

There is no charge for this event. Donations are always welcome.

Great Vow Zen Monastery is located in Clatskanie, OR, about 75 miles northwest of Portland in the beautiful Columbia River valley.

For information about the monastery see http://www.greatvow.org/.

For driving directions, go here.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
45th Annual
Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Commemoration
organized by Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility
Portland Buddhist Peace Fellowship supports this event as a co-sponsor
Sunday, August 5
7:30 pm
Japaneses-American Historical Plaza
Waterfront Park at NW Naito Pkwy & Couch
From Oregon PSR:
Iran and the U.S. are engaged in a nuclear showdown. Instead of meeting face to face with Iran to negotiate peace and mutual security issues in the Middle East, the administration insists on preconditions to talks and threatens to lead us into another military fiasco against the advice of our own military advisors. We must take a stand agains nuclear weapons.
This year's memorial features Oregon's Poet Laureate, Lawson Inada. Rev. Akahoshi from the Nichiren Buddhist Temple will do the Closing Reflections. Northwest Tibetan Cultural Association Chanters will perform and Aurora Chorus will sing peace and remembrance songs. In addition, this year's memorial will be followed by a performance piece called Harmos. Follow this link for more info, and to help Oregon PSR distribute fliers.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

4th Annual Buddhist Festival in the Park: Path of Compassion

Path of Compassion
A Buddhist Festival in the Park
Saturday, June 2, 2006
12:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Colonel Summers Park
SE 17th and Taylor, Portland, Oregon

Buddhist talks
Celebratory ceremony including Blessings for people and pets
Tabling by Buddhist Communities
Meditation and Practice Workshops
Panel Discussion on the Theme Path of Compassion
Food and Buddhist items for sale
Activities for Children


Portland's fourth annual Buddhist festival features talks by Reverend Jundo Gregory Gibbs of the Oregon Buddhist Temple, and Professor James Blumenthal of the Maitripa Institute. While talks, ceremony, and panel discussions occur in the park's main shelter, the children's pavilion has story times and activities scheduled during the afternoon.

The paths of Buddhism are diverse. All are meant to lead to liberation and compassion. Buddhist communities offer booths with information about their temples. In this fourth year of the festival in the park, new features are added to celebrate, connect, and learn about the all-encompassing paths of Buddhism. Restaurants will provide food for sale, and Buddhist items will be for sale from TibetanPrayerflag.com (Tibet Gift) and Buddhist Peace Fellowship.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Gathering for Discussion: Button Making



Make Buttons for the Portland Buddhist Festival

Sunday, May 20
2:30 to 4:30 pm

Make some buttons for yourself and for Portland BPF. Share in conversation and bring finger-food snacks for potluck fun.

Woodstock Library
Community Meeting Room
6008 SE 49th Ave,
Portland, Oregon

Update: We now have the parts to make pocket mirrors as well as buttons.
If you bring your own button printouts, there are two sizes of buttons: 1 1/4 inch and 2 1/4 inch. The outer circle for the smaller should be 1 5/8 inches, and the outer circle for the larger should be 2 3/4 inches. Keep in mind smaller has a border of about 5 mm that wraps around the button parts, and the larger a border of about a quarter inch. These are the button making machines we will use. If you want to see the instructions before the gathering, you can find them here. BPF Portland will provide the button parts and machines, we just ask that you make a few buttons for us, and you can take a few with you.

Drop in as you can, this will be an informal, fun, and family-friendly gathering. We also have some fun button patterns for kids that came with the pieces.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

BPF Gathering for Discussion March 25

Report from Washington DC

Sunday, March 25
2:30 to 4:30 pm
Belmont Library

Deb Beardsley and her husband were inspired to go to the march on Washington at the end of January thanks to our call for a representative. She found it such a rewarding experience that she returned our check intended to pay for her airfare. Deb will share stories from her trip, and has photos.

We will also participate in BPF's Action Alert, a call to chapters to send letters supporting Peace Tax Legislation. Follow the link for more info.

Also, see stories and photos from the Buddhist Peace Delegation. The YouTube Slideshow from BPF in Cincinnati is wonderful. Maia Duerr reports even more people marched in the delegation than 2 years ago. She said, "People came to us as we were walking, perhaps because we were such a contrast to the rest of the march." They had an inspiring meeting with Dennis Kucinich: he told them that groups like us are very necessary in these times; he showed them his kata from the Dalai Lama, received 2 years ago. Maia said the slideshow creator, Paul Davis, is a Vietnam Vet, student of Thich Nhat Hanh. He was the Buddhist Peace Delegation's lead speaker in John McCain's office, quite eloquent.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Owning Up: Report from West Bank, Israel, and Jordan

Owning Up:
Addressing Americans’ Responsibilities
Regarding “Palestine and Israel”


photo by Jill Severson

Thursday March 22nd, 2007
7:00-9:30pm
PSU Multicultural Center
Smith Memorial Union room 228


Join Jill Severson as she Reports Back from two trips to the West Bank, Israel and Jordan, and Reflects on her—and our—Relationships and responsibilities as Americans to bring peace to the US and the region. All are welcome!!!

A Reflective REPORT BACK towards more Peace

FYI: Audience participation will be expected—via reflection and conversation!

Sponsored by: PSU’s Students United for Nonviolence (SUN)

and supported by: Portland Buddhist Peace Fellowship. Jill Severson is a member of AUPHR, WILPF, and other organizations for peace.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Portland Stop the War March 18


Stop the War
Bring the Troops Home Now!


South Park Blocks
Sunday, March 18

Peace Action Camp noon to 5 pm

Rally and March 1:30 pm

photographer unknown, 2003

Make your presence known to End the War and Bring the Troops Home. Participate in Democracy, speak out, and exercise your creativity in the Action Camp starting at 12 noon, Rally and March together from 1:30pm. There will be speakers, music, actions and more! Check back at their website as more information becomes available - be sure to get on the Action Alert email newsletter to get up to date information on how you can get involved! Help get the word out....see how here.

BPF Portland is a co-sponsor if the Portland march and rally to stop the War in Iraq.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

2006 Year in Review

Activities
Generally
Served as conduit for information from like-minded groups and from Buddhist Peace Fellowship. Participated in opportunities for input to BPF. Remained a group member of the NW Dharma Association, participation which inspired BPF Seattle to engage more with the Association.

March
Meditation Vigil during 'End the War, Begin the Peace' rally and march. Some meditated, some marched, some marched and meditated.

Supported citizen lobbyists who occupied Senator Ron Wyden's office, including our member, Christina Hulbe. She also wrote a statement coming from us for the press packet.

April
Christina represented BPF Portland at a meeting with Ron Wyden and his chief of staff with around a dozen local peace groups.June
Co-sponsored Finding Refuge: A Buddhist Festival in the Park

Enji Hoogstra represented at the BPF Member Gathering, came back with fresh ideas for the chapter's future.

July
Participated in the 24-Hour Chant for Peace at Great Vow Monastery. Seattle BPF members Viki and Elaine joined Enji in leading an hour of our street chant.

August
First gathering for discussion at the library. Core members identified, discussed future direction of the chapter.

September
Had booth, made Buddhist peace buttons at the Belmont Street Fair, space courtesy of the Nichiren Buddhist Temple.

October
Hosted a showing of "Iraq for Sale: The War Profiteers"

November
Bimonthly discussion, explored the BPF's Mandala for Socially Engaged Buddhism

Funds

Account balance
January 1, 2006: $283 plus $189 in savings, for Summer Park Festival
Savings, to maintain account: $5.00
$477 total

December 31, 2006: $256
($41 belongs to 2007 Summer Park Festival)
Savings, to maintain account: $5.00
$40 cash, not deposited
$301 total

Expenses
Co-sponsorship for peace march: $50
Buddhist Peace Fellowship donation: $108
Park Festival: $238
Northwest Dharma Association: $50
Kinko's Copy Card $20
$466 total

Donations
For Park Festival: $20
For Park Festival from fundraiser: $69
Member donations: $45 (down from $120 in 2005)
Anon: $56
Maitripa Institute: $100
$290 total

Reflection
These are the responses to BPF's annual questions. I should have conferred with core members on these, my apologies. The due date crept up on me. Let me know if any of this needs amending.

(Questions 1 through 3 were on contact info.)

4. How often does your chapter meet?
Every other month. In 2006 we met less often, but around 4 times.

5. How many people belong to your chapter? We're experimenting with no formal membership: 5 core members; around 10 that express continued, consistent interest; around 150 on email list
(If you don’t have formal membership, please give an estimate of the average attendance of each chapter meeting.)

6. Are there at least 3 people who serve as stewards/caretakers of the chapter’s wellbeing? Yes
What leadership structure has your chapter found most useful?
Core members make decisions. Core members are those who have demonstrated consistent involvement, not necessarily attendance, but maintain communication. All email list members are encouraged to vet ideas and propose projects for which they are willing to take a leadership role.

7. What kind of decision-making process has your chapter found most useful?
Core members use cooperative consensus. So far no difficult decisions have been addressed. Decisions with bigger implications are brought to the email list for input.

8. What event or activity has your chapter found to be the most meaningful in this past year? Please tell us in detail, and attach any flyers or other materials you created that you’re excited about.
Co-hosting our summer Buddhist Festival in the Park: Finding Refuge.

9. What challenges does your chapter face?

People are busy with many interests, so we are scattered and not always able to meet in person.

10. Have you been in touch with your Regional Representative this year? If yes, how did the interaction go?

Our contact is our representative. We've made efforts to spread out the communication responsibilities, so when I'm in the role of regional rep, other core members can pass on information to the chapter email list.

11. What else do you want the BPF Office to know? How can we serve you better?

The BPF member gathering was a great resource and raised my energy for new ideas. Many thanks to Maia for her graceful leadership.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

BPF Gathering for Discussion January 28

Peak Oil presented by Lisa Mann

Sunday, January 28
2:30 pm -4:30 pm
Belmont Library

PEAK OIL RESOURCES

(Warning- Peak Oil is approached from many different angles, depending on the view of the writer/ researcher. Some writers on the subject are “doomsdayers” who make broad conclusions about the “end of civilization.” Others are working for fossil fuel or other energy industries, or for companies providing alternative energies, who may have financial interests in painting a rosy picture. Keep your thinking cap on, and don’t take everything you find at face value)

ON THE WEB

http://www.portlandpeakoil.org/
our local group, lots of links, articles, and information about Peak Oil. Also learn about the Portland Peak Oil Task Force here.

A draft of the Task Force’s final recommendations can be found at Portland’s Office of Sustainable Development: www.portlandonline.com/osd

PORTLAND PEAK OIL MEETS EVERY WEDNESDAY AT 7 PM AT ST. FRANCIS CHURCH DINING HALL, 1182 SE PINE STREET IN PORTLAND.

http://www.peakoil.com/
Peak Oil news and message boards

http://www.energybulletin.net/
a clearing house of the most recent articles and information about Peak Oil and related energy issues.

http://www.peakoil.net/
The Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas website. Scholarly and straightforward, provides many points of view. Highly recommended.

http://www.postcarbon.org/
Julian Darley created the “Post Carbon Network” to start making global connections between groups preparing for a post-Peak Oil world. Very positive.

RECOMMENDED READING

Richard Heinberg: “The Party’s Over” and “Power Down” The seminal works on the crisis.

Julian Darley: “High Noon for Natural Gas: The New Energy Crisis”

Michael T. Klare: “Blood and Oil : The Dangers and Consequences of America’s Growing Dependency on Imported Petroleum”

Paul Roberts: “The End of Oil : On the Edge of a Perilous New World”