Sunday, December 14, 2008

Social Gathering and Reflection

BPF Portland
Potluck Social
Sunday, December 14
1 pm to 3:30 pm

Gregory Heights Library
7921 N.E. Sandy Boulevard

Meet other Buddhists, share memories and food, reflect on the Portland Chapter's activities, and think about plans for the coming year and beyond.

Think of this as a chance to socialize with other Buddhists. We'll keep business to a minimum. All are welcome.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Voting Early is Voting Green

If you thought the election junk mail was's only going to get worse between now and election day. By now, Oregon voters should have received your ballots. If you vote right away, the junk mail will stop, as well as the phone calls. Entities sending these things out get voter lists daily, I hear. (Not how you've voted, just, who hasn't voted yet.)

No one came to our scheduled presentation on Ballot Measures 57 and 61. In a nutshell, here's the advice from Partnership for Safety and Justice:

Partnership for Safety and Justice (PSJ) is working hard to defeat the mandatory minimum ballot measure (M61) that Oregonians will vote on in November 2008. This year the election is complicated and the best way to defeat the mandatory minimum ballot measure is to support an alternative, competing measure (M57). We have compiled a wide range of information to help people better understand the crime related ballot measures, their policies, projected impacts, and the politics behind them. You will also find positions that PSJ is taking on other ballot measures, along with plenty of information on how to support our election-related organizing efforts.

If you did not receive your ballot, are you sure you're registered to vote? If you moved, you still should be able to just have to go to your elections office to get your ballot.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Presentation on Ballot Measures 57 and 61

A Better Way to Fight Crime: Presentation on
Ballot Measures 57 and 61

Monday, October 13
6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Hollywood Library
4040 NE Tillamook St.

This year's ballot will have two measures concerning criminal justice policy. This presentation will contain information about both ballot measures that will help you make an informed decision.

Presenter is Jeff Kerr, a member of the Portland Insight Meditation Center and a volunteer with the Partnership for Safety and Justice. Partnership for Safety and Justice works to reduce our state's reliance on incarceration as the primary means to fight crime.

This is our Portland Chapter gathering for the fall. We will have another gathering in November for the Year-end Review.

This gathering is for informational purposes. We do not solicit memberships or donations when using the library as a gathering place.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Hiroshima Day

Hiroshima Day
Wednesday, August 6
6 pm to 7 pm
Waterfront Park
(NW Naito and Couch)

From Oregon PSR: Join us in marking the anniversary of the 1945 nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Each year we remember this history with reflections, music, and a call to action. In doing so, we hope to prevent such a grave mistake from happening again.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Buddhas on Bikes

Buddhas On Bikes
a PedalPalooza event
Saturday, June 28
10 am to 2 pm

On this beginner-friendly (for Buddhists and cyclists) ride, we'll learn why inner SE is called the "Buddhist Ghetto," and see what Willamette Week calls "Portland's Best Buddha."
We'll meet at Dharma Rain Zen Center, do a quick meet and greet, possibly with a short meditation. Then we'll do a pretty mellow ride visiting about a dozen local temples. (Which is only a hinting at the number of Buddhist groups in town, but also a do-able bike loop.)
Midway, we'll stop at Van Hanh Restaurant for wonderful vegan food served by Buddhist nuns. Ideally, we should end up at the Multnomah County Bike Fair at Col. Summers park (not far from Dharma Rain) shortly after the fair begins at 2pm or so.
Here is a map of the ride. (This is a work in progress, it may be not all the stops will occur.)
  • A: Dharma Rain Zen Center
  • C: Chua Linh Son
  • D: Van Hanh Restaurant
  • E: Bodhi Tree Center
  • F: Oregon Buddhist Temple
  • G: Portland Buddhist Priory
  • H: Mahasiddha Buddhist Center
  • I: Maitripa Institute
  • J: Portland Shambhala Center
  • K: Nichiren Buddhist Temple
  • L: Miao Fa Chan Temple
  • M: Colonel Summers Park, and MCBF
Bring $$ for lunch and optional donations.
This will be our BPF Portland Gathering for the month.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Gay Pride Parade

Portland Gay Pride Parade
Sunday, June 15
11 am
Parade route map found here.

The Portland Chapter of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship will be marching in Portland's Gay Pride Parade this year. Many faith congregations join the parade, proudly displaying their welcome of all GBLTQs in their places of worship.
In 2007, the only Buddhist congregation represented was SGI-USA. BPF Portland would like to increase that number, so we are joining the parade. We invite any Buddhist communities to join us behind our banner, and any Buddhist or Buddhist-friendly individuals may join us as well.
Please bring your own hand-lettered signs with your Buddhist temple's names, or with Buddhist sayings such as
  • May all beings be happy.
  • Hatred never ceases by hatred, but by love alone is healed ~Buddha
  • The heart that breaks open can contain the whole universe. ~Joanna Macy
  • To find a buddha, all you have to do is see your nature. Your nature is the buddha. ~Bodhidharma
Any who join us, please be aware of the parade rules.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

5th Annual Buddhist Festival in the Park

Harmony in the Park

Saturday, June 7, 2008
12 pm to 4:30 pm

Children's Pavilion
spiritual science projects
cooperative contests
craft activities
meditative activities

chants/ mantras
daily practice

Teaching Pavilion
keynote speaker
panel discussion


Teaching Pavilion
  • 11 am: Food served to monastics
  • 12 noon: Opening Ceremony
  • 12:15 pm: Keynote speaker: Larry Christensen, Zen Center of Portland
  • 1 pm: Workshops: 1. meditation and chant by several Asian groups 2. chant by Oregon Buddhist Temple 3. starting a daily practice
  • 2 pm: Main Ceremony
  • 3 pm: Panel Discussion: Kyogen Carlson, Dharma Rain Zen Center; Jacqueline Mandell, Samden Ling; Rev. Gregory Gibbs, Oregon Buddhist Temple, Jampel Gyatsho (Clark Hansen), Portland Yeshe Nyingpo
  • 4 pm: Thai Association of Oregon: Thai Classical Dance
  • 4:30 pm: Closing Dedication

Children's Pavilion

  • 12:15 pm to 4:30 pm: Ongoing activities: rock polishing; story times; coloring; crafts
  • 12 noon: Opening Ceremony
  • 12:15 pm: Relay Races and Cooperative Contests
  • 1:00 pm: Workshops: Chanting "Om Mani Padme Hum" with Dion; meditation, chanting with Adhi; craft project
  • 2:00 pm: Main Ceremony
  • 3:00 pm: Spiritual Experiments
  • 4:00 pm: Thai dancers; Closing Ceremony

Participating Groups:

(most of these groups will have tables at the festival)
Buddhist Peace Fellowship, Portland (main sponsor)
Northwest Dharma Association
Portland Yeshe Nyingpo
Oregon Buddhist Temple
Maitripa Institute
Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition

Dharma Rain Zen Center
Awaken Portland
Mercy and Wisdom Healing Center
Zen Center of Portland
Samden Ling
Miao Fa Chan Temple
Kagyu Changchub Chuling
Nichiren Buddhist Temple of Portland
Zen Community of Oregon
Portland Dzogchen Practice Group
Diamond Way, Portland
NW Portland Ministries
Vipassana Meditation as taught by S.N. Goenka
Taiwan Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation
Skillful Meditation Project Portland


Food Court sponsored by BPF Portland

Donations of food, supplies, and labor by these establishments:

Thai Orchid, Chai Yo, Mai Thai, Lemon Leaf, Som Tum Thai, Sivalaya, PeemKaew Thai, Bangkok Palace, Rama Thai, Arawan, Thai Lotus, Aroy Thai, D&N , Authentic Thai Cuisine, Baan Thai, Vege Thai, Sawasdee Thai, Pok Pok, Appethaizing, E-San Thai, Nichiren Buddhist Temple

Buddhist Items

Samden Ling: Tibetan Rugs
Tibet A Gift: assortment, Tibetan prayer flags, imports
The Foundation Store: assortment, books, meditation and altar supplies
Miao Fa Chan Temple: assortment, books, altar supplies, imports
BPF Portland: assortment
The Monkey and the Rat: assortment, imports

Flier full page, color

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Buttons for Burma

Buttons for Burma
Sunday, June 1
2:00 to 4:30 pm
Belmont Library

Make buttons, bookmarks and other simple art or craft items for BPF to sell at the Buddhist Festival in the Park. Proceeds from these particular items will be given to aid organizations for Burmese cyclone victims.

Bring your favorite materials to make bookmarks, cards, or small artwork so BPF can sell these at the festival. While we are only allowed to sell items at the festival, and cannot accept donations, we are certainly willing to sell them at a high mark-up. ;-)

BPF will provide the materials to make buttons and small mirrors, but if you have an image you're fond of that is 2 1/4 inches in diameter (with 1/4 inch border) we can cut it and use it to make buttons. Lightweight paper only.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Helping Burmese

Go to Project Maje for good information on the cyclone crisis in Burma.

DONATIONS for disaster relief can be made via these organizations:

Medecins Sans Frontiers (already distributing emergency aid in affected areas)

Medical Emergency Relief International (already bringing aid to Delta)

Thirst-Aid (water purification is an urgent priority) (special fund via Burma's Buddhist monks)

MercyCorps (experienced disaster relief experts with local partners)

Back in January,
we held a gathering on Burmese Refugee support. BPF Portland is encouraging the formation of a support team to help a refugee family. Help us form that team. Here are the notes from that gathering.

Pastor King Mang Zam with Oregon Myanmar Christian Church

He focuses on just giving. People have lost their nationality, identity. His reward is seeing people change and transform. When they learn to speak English. When they graduate.

Many were born in refugee camps, have lived there for 14 years. They need to learn what things are, for example one family thought cheese was a soap. They were confined in refugee camps, unwanted by Thailand.

If we want to know what it's like, the new Rambo movie, it's like that. At the time of this talk, it was 4 months since the crackdown. The crackdown has been happening for 60 years in remote areas. The city may look calm but the government is still taking prisoners. No monks under 40 are being allowed in the monasteries.

He sees three groups coming from Burma: 1. They're here, and they're not concerned about Burma. 2. They don't want to do anything with political involvement, and they see anything against the government as political. 3. They want to be actively involved.

Pastor King does a lot of community involvement, taking care of souls and physical care.

We have to understand that in Burma the government wants people to mistrust each other so they can govern more. "If you're a Christian, or a Buddhist, you do not get rice." There is mistrust between Buddhists and Christians, but Pastor King's message is that we need unity. He works with Buddhist monks. Here in the US, we have to have unity. Here, Burmese are just American.

There are about 400 Burmese here.

Tara, with Burma Action Committee

Burma is:
o The largest country in SE Asia
o Culturally and ecologically diverse
o 8 major ethnic groups
o actually hundreds of distinct cultures
o Government refused to honor elections results in 1988
o In demos earlier this year, around 3,000 people killed
o Government went to monasteries directly
o 1000s of monks are disappearing, the monasteries are empty
o this could be a greater crackdown than 88, but government is doing a better job of hiding it
o The movement is still going on (this was in March)
o Fuel prices went up 500%; this triggered the protests
o Economic mismanagement: government controls, inflates prices; tied to social and political conditions

This crisis goes further back than 1988. Parts of the ethnic states joined Burma reluctantly in 1948 when Britain left. There are "Burmanization policies." They teach in Burmese even though it's not their own language. Soldiers are encouraged with rewards to marry into ethnic minorities. Soldiers can rape with impunity.

The US quota for Burmese refugees is 70,000. We took in 15,000 last year. None are getting processed because of a clause in the Patriot Act. "Terrorists" are anyone who takes up arms or supports those against the government.

Bill Coddington with SOAR

Bill helps groups get set up to help sponsor families. (1 to 5 people.)
o You need 8-10 people in a support group. Expect 250-300 volunteer hours over the course of 3 to 4 months
o Costs $2500 to $5000 (depending on material donations)
o Provide monetary support 1st month or 2
o The family receives a check, best to hold that in savings for after the 2nd month
o After 60 days they get a stipend
o Provide a prepaid cell phone
o 1st month: many appointments
o Goal: finally self-sufficient by 6 months; diminish monetary support, provide friendship support
o Church World Services: provide loan for tickets here; refugees are to begin paying back at 4 months, and have 4-5 years to pay it back
o IRCO: provides ESL classes, job training, employment agency, free bus tickets…for 5 years

3 tiers of support needed: financial, time, and both together…let's team up!

-English tutors also needed: "aid and abet" the ESL teaching

Qualified organizations for Refugee Resettlement

SOAR: small organization

Lutheran Family Services

Catholic Charities

Friday, March 14, 2008

Peace Rally and March

Saturday, March 15
Peace Action Camp
10 am to 6 pm
Rally and March
2 pm
Organized by PdxPeace

While the rally and Action Camp is going on, the Portland Chapter of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship will have a meditation vigil.

We hope you will join us, for a few minutes or as long as you wish. I don't know exactly where, but the tables in general are to be near SW Park and Madison.

We also hope you would like to join us in the march, showing a solid Buddhist presence for peace.

I welcome any lending of cushions for the day. The Action Camp ends at 6, but I plan to close the meditation vigil around 4:30 pm.

Please share this info as you are able.

BPF Portland is a co-sponsor.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Planning for Park Festival

Planning for 5th Annual Park Festival
Sunday, March 2, 2008
2 pm to 4:00 pm
7905 SE Holgate Blvd, Portland

The festival will be on Saturday, June 7
Most likely noon to 4:30 with food available for Vinaya-observant monks before noon.

Our goal for this meeting is to decide on a theme, and to discuss some of the major elements of the festival. (Possible speakers/teachers, children's activities, ceremonies.) Based on my knowledge of the criteria for park use, I will try to have some documents ready for vendor applications, and registration forms for groups.

Holgate has wifi available, so we should have access to the internet.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Burmese Refuge Support

Portland Buddhist Peace Fellowship presents
Burmese Refugee Support
How you can sponsor Burmese refugees

January 27
Belmont Library
2pm to 4pm

Portland has become home to a growing number of Burmese refugees as they seek asylum from over fifty years of human rights abuses in their homeland of Burma. Refugees that make it out of border camps and through the labyrinthine immigration process still face the many challenges of resettlement. Sponsoring a refugee family during this time of transition can help ensure their success. There are many ways you can help.
Find out how you can get involved.

· Tara Horn, activist: An introduction to the Burmese crisis
· Film: A Prayer of Peace by Front Films
· Pastor King Mang Zam: Burmese refugees and community in Portland

Sponsorship planning session: Form a co-sponsor team!
· Bill Coddington and Nan Whitaker-Emrich, sponsorship advisors:
How to sponsor and support refugees