Friday, October 30, 2009

Gathering for Discussion

Sunday, November 15
2:30 to 4:30 pm

Belmont Library

Reflection on the Year
Plans and wishes for the year to come

Meet other local engaged Buddhists, think about where we've been, and consider where we're going in the next year. Take an active part in deciding the direction of our Portland Chapter.

If there is time, we can talk about the current issue of Turning Wheel, which did not arrive in time for the previous gathering. If you didn't get it, consider becoming a paying member of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship so you do. Did you notice I wrote "paying member?" It is possible now to become a member of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship without giving a donation. Of course all donations help, but please show your support by becoming a member now. Put the magazine in your hands by giving a donation.

Also, if you're starting to think about holiday gifts, consider our Buddhist Festival water bottles. We can't make sales at the gathering at the library, but let's make arrangements via email. If you're close by, we can save on shipping costs by meeting in person.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Gathering for Discussion

Sunday, October 18, 2009
2:30 to 4:30 pm
Belmont Library

The new issue of Turning Wheel is due to come out in early October.

Let's meet face to face, get to know each other, or catch up, and let's talk informally about the topics covered in the latest issue.

All are welcome to join us in the Belmont Library meeting room.

Monday, October 05, 2009 Day of Action
Day of Action

Saturday, October 24
11 am to 1 pm

The Buddhist Peace Fellowship, Portland Chapter endorses and is participating in this action. Please try to make the time to come to the vigil at 11 am to help create a substantial "350" of contemplative beings.

Here is the letter from the organizer:

Hello all, my name is Satya and I live with Touching Earth Sangha, a new meditation community here in Portland. We consider our lifestyle choices and our compassionate actions in the world as an essential part of our spiritual practice, as I'm sure many of you do. In line with this we're trying to organize some events in the near future that offer a way for the Portland meditation community to get involved with efforts to reduce suffering for all beings around the issue of climate change.

As I'm sure you're aware, global warming and climate change is perhaps the greatest issue of social and environmental consequence in the world today, with effects on species extinction, worldwide drought and famine, floods and weather disasters, and even the spread of warfare and disease.

As there is a worldwide governmental meeting about the issue in Copenhagen in December, many groups are trying to organize public expressions of concern around the world in the coming months, in order to persuade the various governments to take real, substantive action to reduce atmospheric carbon to safer levels (350 ppm, according to recent scientific consensus). This will involve serious policy changes in order to ensure the most wasteful and polluting countries (like this one) dramatically simplify our energy needs; and help poorer countries, already feeling the impacts and much less responsible for the problem, adapt to changing conditions with the least suffering and destruction.

One group,, is organizing a global day of action on October 24th, with events invented and planned by thousands of local groups in almost every country in the world to emphasize the importance of "350" and demonstrate how much the world community is aware and concerned. (check out their website for lots more info). I thought it would be wonderful to see a bunch of folks from the contemplative spiritual traditions in Portland participate by engaging in a public session of meditation on the riverfront, in the shape of "350" which is a theme of the various actions. This would occur right in front of one of the already planned events - a flotilla of kayaks on the river (between the Hawthorne and Morrison bridges) also in this shape - both could be seen at the same time from above. This would occur at 11 am. After this is a gathering and rally in Pioneer square at 1pm. If anyone is interested in participating, or contributing feedback/ideas, please contact me at

Another group, Climate Justice Fast!, is planning to awaken global awareness by conducting publicized fasts of various lengths all over the world. A core group of individuals from many different countries will be undertaking long fasts (over 40 days) leading up to and through the Copenhagen summit. They are working to gather large numbers of people to engage in solidarity fasts of however long folks are comfortable, to help spread the word, and to make people's personal commitment and resolve palpable and intimate. The organizers are very much influenced by Gandhi and his perspective that outer change is rooted in personal spiritual commitment and transformation, and specifically by his method of fasting.

I am wondering if there are folks in the Portland meditation community, (or anyone else!) who would want to fast for one to four days with me, probably while doing lots of sitting, in a public place(maybe the same waterfront location above) and with some info of the various issues involved. Some folks might be able to help with video/media stuff to share what we're doing with a wide audience. The starting date will probably be November 6. Again, if interested, drop me an e-mail at

And for more info on this movement see
Thanks so much for reading, and please send any feedback and suggestions. If anyone's interested in our sangha, you can check out our website at