Making positive choices about the environment is the theme in some magazine articles this summer. Monica Wilde, who I consider to be an eco-warrier, brings our attention to the reality that we can make life style choices which can have an effect on the environment and ultimately on ourselves. The disconnect in life, she suggests, occurs when there is no personal and positive action about our immediate environment.
In her article, Now is the Time for Action, Monica brings to the fore the importance of individual involvement in the face of an increasing crisis in climate changes which is already inimical to the quality of life on earth, to all life. She ends the article with the lucid reality that action is in your every waking moment as well as your dreams.
I am reminded of the shopkeepers and household residents in Indian towns and cities attentively sweeping the pavement outside their shops and houses and cleansing the air inside their rooms with smouldering pine leaves every morning before the start of their day.
Being mindful of our immediate environs is the beginning of a larger understanding of the state of our planet.
Concerning plastic in our lives, this recent article in The Guardian brings home the fact that “humans have made 8.3 billion tons of plastic since 1950” presented in a captivating illustrated format. (The Unted States of Plastic.)
In terms of the personal well-being of individuals-the internal environment of the body-Dr Miriam Maisel, a certified lifestyle physician and family practitioner, states in her webpage:
The main message of lifestyle medicine is that healthy eating along with physical activity can bring about dramatic improvements in many medical conditions, and reduce the need for long medications and even surgery.
In her article, Health Independence, Miriam looks at alternative ways of living that are not dependent on conventional medicines and treatments.
Albert Harris (Ed)
Many Roads is an electronic magazine and subscription is easy and free.
War doesn’t determine who’s right – only who’s left.
Finding peace of mind is most important ; and in difficult times, when we pay attention, we are enveloped in a tidal wave of media and opinions that are almost certain to influence our way of thinking. To what extent we allow this to happen depends on our own skill in differentiating between what is true and what is not; what is relevant to our lives and others and what is not relevant.
Analysing commentary and discerning the truth of our world situation under these circumstances becomes difficult. Yet above all, we can promote and maintain a moral obligation to give succour to the afflicted in time of war. This is a paradox for the pacifist: how to protect the vulnerable against aggression.
Personally, on an individual level, we can be activists for peace by doing anything that is within our capacity to disseminate our views. In this context, Many Roads plays a small part in allowing readers with an interest in inner as well as world peace to have an opinion about how we can move forward with a compassionate view to finding a solution to evolving events both locally and universally.
With this in mind, readers are invited to offer opinions on events from an apolitical perspective. How would you act as an individual to bring about a more peaceful world?
Opinions matter. Let yours be heard in the next issue of Many Roads.
We need your contributions for our next issue. Please send your articles, reviews, comments and creative outputs to:
Summer is coming to an end and the Autumn Equinox is around the corner. Already we’ve had our first crop of potatoes from one of our raised beds. They are clean and organic, with a real taste that you won’t get from supermarket produce. The brae berries are fat and sweet and the red currants are heavy on the branches. Various beans are late in coming because of the lack of summer sun but the mustard leaf just keeps on growing and tastes delicious either cooked or in a salad. And the apples and plums are almost ready to pluck.
In the magazine this time round we have some comments about the summer camp in Portugal as well as a personal review from Annie Dibble. Maeve O’Sullivan answers some questions about her latest edition of Haiku poetry, A Train Hurtles West, and we have another two poems from Angus Ogilvy. Monica Wilde provides information about a cure for painful insect bites and Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel writes about dharma in the west…and lots more
Please consider writing and submitting articles to Many Roads. There is no deadline as the magazine comes out when we have enough contributors.
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CHAU MEIN: Yeshe
DHARMA IN THE WEST: Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel
MEADOW WOUNDWORT: Monica Wilde
TWO POEMS: Angus Ogilvy
LEAVING VIGO: Maeve O’Sullivan
DEATH SONG: Malcolm Sutherland
TROWLOCK ISLAND: Ann Inglis
BODHICHARYA SUMMER CAMP PORTUGAL: Annie Dibble
REMEMBERING HARRY: Diana Lilley
DENTISTRY IN NEPAL: Anita Selva
A TRAIN HURTLES WEST: Yeshe
SHE WANTED PEACE… Jaiya John
SUMMER CAMP PORTUGAL…Various Contributers
DURBAR SQUARE BHAKTAPUR
The earthquake in Nepal was unprecedented in the amount of damage that was caused to the fabric and the hearts of the people. The ancient cities of Lalitpur, Kathmandu and Bhaktapur have been badly hit. Little news has been heard about the villages to the north, west and east, although unofficial word is that many of the houses no longer exist. Roads have been made inaccessible by landslides and the opportunity for helicopters to land is hampered by the lack of suitable places in the maze of terraced fields.
Please pray for the people in Nepal who have been affected.
OM MANI PEME HUM
Approaching the middle of a wood…Cicely Gill
Are We Really Practicing?…Elizabeth Mattis
Grasping the Nettle…Monica Wilde
Kubli Chana...Mridu Shailaj Thanki
Letting Go of Avila…Maeve O’Sullivan
Prayer for Nepal…Jaiya John
Layman P’ang…Three Buddhist Poets
Karmapa…The Story So Far
MANY ROADS is a platform where students and friends of Bodhicharya can publish news, articles, poetry and more. Writers, journalists, photographers and the inspired are also encouraged to submit any work under the various categories which can be found on the Home Page.
Submissions can be themed on the factual as well as the fictional. Please submit articles for consideration by Wednesday of each week.
Should you wish to receive regular updates of news and views posted on the MANY ROADS website, please Join our Mailing List.
Schiehallion (Fairy Hill of the Caledonians), Perth and Kinross, Scotland by Yeshe
There has been a lot of talk and a lot written recently about mindfulness. I came across quite a few websites concerned with corporate-based mindfulness training (CBMT). There seems to have been a transposition of the Buddhist idea of mindfulness incorporated into business in order to decrease stress and improve productivity. Here is some blurb from a course in New York which features a photograph of uncomfortable-looking execs trying hard to be mindful:
Would you like to make better use of the precious time you have each and every day? Are you looking for opportunities to be more effective, calm, clear, and focused at work and at home? Are you interested in learning techniques to be more responsive and less reactive in everyday living?
Suits, shirts, shoes and ties seem the appropriate meditation wear for the course.
A course in Mindfulness at Aberdeen University describes the aim of the study as: Mindfulness is an innate capacity of the mind to be aware of the present moment in a non-judgmental way.
David Brazier has a unique take on the current popular interest in mindfulness and calls it the new hula hoop. He relates that when he visited a neighbour his mother would remind him to be mindful of his manners: simply to remember where he is and be polite.
Maybe there is something in his straightforward approach to what it is to be mindful.
This Christmas and New Year, please be mindful of those less fortunate than ourselves and radiate love and compassion for all sentient beings. What better message can there be for this season of celebration.
Please receive regular updates of news and views posted on the MANY ROADS website by logging on to Join our Mailing List.
Take care and wishing all readers health and happiness in the coming year.
Spinach Pakora by Indra Majapuria
Coconut Vegetable Tofu by Kate Roddick
Wild Food Winter Salads by Monica Wilde
A Conversation with David Brazier by Yeshe
Universal Laws from Everything You Never Said
Big Buddha is Watching You by Christine Hawkridge
Community Champion’s Reflection by Ankhra
Healing the Wounded Heart by Annie Dibble
The Retired Miner by Cicely Gill
Reunion by Maeve O’Sullivan
The Combat by Edwin Muir
Pride by Annie Dibble
The Laughing Policeman by Charles Jolly
Toronto: Autumn Sky
Autumn has turned into spring. In our tiny garden at the front of the house, flowers are blooming again, the hedges are still growing and a warm wind blows through the trees in the park across the road.
In this edition, there are some new contributors. Anne Katrin-Voss writes about her experience of how compassion can suddenly evolve when faced with an emotionally-charged incident. Annette Tamuly Jung recounts her decision to change her lifestyle by joining a dharma community in France led by Lama Sherab Namdreul. And Lynda Miller and Cicely Gill have contributed to the fictional stories and poetry sections respectively.
Finally, all who knew Lama Tsering Paljor were saddened by his recent death and he will be remembered as a kind and gentle friend.
Submissions can be themed on the factual as well as the fictional. Please submit articles for consideration by Wednesday of each week
Please receive regular updates of news and views posted on the MANY ROADS website by logging on to Join our Mailing List.
Compassion Can Change a Man by Anne Katrin-Voss
Oasis of Long Life by Annette Tamuly Jung
A Slice of Samsara by Lynda Miller
A Cure for Insomnia by Cicely Gill
Non-Hatred by Bikkhu Nanamoli
The Horses by Edwin Muir
Perspective by Maeve O’Sullivan
Language and That from Not the Best of Tom Shields
Lama Tsering Paljor by Yeshe
Pumpkin Achar by Indra Majapuria
Winter Walk in Vogrie Park by Yeshe
Ask yourself whether you are happy, and you cease to be so.
John Stuart Mill (1806 – 1873)
There is a novel method for gauging prosperity in Bhutan; the measure of wealth in a country can be assessed in the happiness of the people. In Bhutan, they have replaced road signs telling drivers to slow down or not to exceed the speed limit with life-affirming mantras: Life is a journey: complete it; and Let nature be your guide are on signposts at the side of the road.
Bhutan has rejected the measure of the country’s GDP in favour of GNH – Gross National Happiness. It can be witnessed not only in the smiling faces of the people, but in the way they have protected the environment from the onslaught of modernisation with its consequent destruction of the culture. The preservation of the environment has remained more important than the maximisation of profit and it remains that way, at the centre of its political agenda.
How has such a distinct and unique system of measuring the happiness of the people been sustained? Being geographically isolated has certainly helped protect the country from the devastating effects of the corporate greed and destruction of the environment. The clearest and most concise answer for me, however, can be found in HH Karmapa’s book, The Heart is Noble: Changing the World from the Inside Out.
In his chapter on Consumerism and Greed, the subtitle is Contentment is the Best Wealth. HH Karmapa expounds very clearly how the attraction for goods have played on our gullibility to purchase according to our wants rather than our needs. Then once we have succumbed to the allure of material goods, we fall into the endless upgrade game. “The functions you need are coming in the next version! The new design is so much more attractive! And it comes in your favourite colour.” It could be anything from a phone to a car; a box of soap powder to an extension to your home. HH Karmapa draws the distinction between wants and needs: Using our own personal experience, we can ask ourselves where the distinction lies between what we really need in order to be happy, and what we do not need but merely want. Greed takes control of us when we lose sight of this distinction and mistake our wants for needs. (pp 61-2) He ends the chapter with a section titled The Greatest Wealth: Contentment.
So where do we find happiness? There are several articles in the magazine which should provide you with thoughts about how happiness might be measured: Andy Lowe has submitted an article about the way he overcame his severe writer’s block when he was involved in writing a text book on research methodology. And in Under the Walnut Tree, Andy’s second piece, he relates the story of Isa and Humphry and the success of building their dharma retreat in the Sierra Nevada, of Andalusia, Spain. The three conversations that took place at Casa da Torres also provides insight into individual takes on the subjects. Jaiya John’s positive prose also provides a message of joy.
Lastly, if you need some sustenance that will bring you happiness, there is a recipe for carrot haluwa by our regular contributor, Indra Majapuria.
“We’re becoming addicted to the Karmapa” [Paraphrased from Ringu Tulku Rinpoche’s speech at the end of H H Karmapa’s first visit to Europe.]
The Karmapa’s visit to Kamalashila and Berlin has been the highlight of 2014. Thanks to the efforts of all the people involved in this memorable visit, the Karmapa’s charismatic presence was felt by all.
Fortunately, I was able to attend the programme at the Estrel Hotel in Berlin. But Annie Dibble has penned a coherent and heart-felt response to Karmapa’s visit to both Kamalashila and Berlin.
A special thanks must also go to Ringu Tulku Rinpoche whose eloquent interpreting of Karmapa’s words sustained the flow of the teachings, expanded on by Karmapa’s interjections in English.
In this edition, one more recipe from Indra Majupuria for vegetable pulao is also included.
Another photo/poem from Jaiya John is on our poetry page.
Dickens’ character Mrs Malaprop has lent her name to many mistakes made in the English Language. Here are a few – Malapropagation.
Lastly, I’ve published an article written by Upasana Pokhriya, The Ten Commandments for Women in India, originally published in a previous edition.
To subscribe to Many Roads, you can do this on https://bodhicharya.org/manyroads/about/
For the next issue, photographs, music, film and book reviews, poetry and recipes are welcome along with anything else you would like to submit.
Looking forward to hearing from you.