Reflections on Bodhicharya Summer Camp 2020
2020’s virtual Summer Camp finished yesterday and I am feeling rather sad! It was a wonderfully rich five days. The Three Principal Aspects of the Path by Je Tsongkhapa is a central text in the Gelug tradition and is described ‘as a summation of all the paths of practice which lead to enlightenment’. The text is short and packed with meaning and Rinpoche in his gentle style laid out all its riches before us. When Rinpoche says his signature phrase: ‘now it’s like this’ – you know you are going to be given the heart of the teachings in an accessible and meaningful way. Rinpoche’s gift to us all is that he makes you feel it is possible, we can progress on the path and that is the sign of a teacher who has fully realised the teachings himself.
And alongside the teachings there was a feast of discussions, practice sessions and the innovative Breakfast Café to enjoy. And of course the jokes! Time to say ‘hi’ to old friends, put faces to names and meet new Bodhicharya students, all across the airwaves. And for me the Zoom platform worked. It can often feel like Rinpoche is in the room talking to just you! Of course there is nothing like being in the physical presence of the teacher but Zoom came in a close second.
I would support continuing to use this platform alongside actual gatherings, even when life returns to something more normal, or what I am calling the new not-normal! It cuts all our carbon footprints and would mean Rinpoche’s annual demanding global travel schedule could be reduced. Food for thought?
Regular Zoom meetings for the Bodhicharya sangha
Following the recent success of the Breakfast Zoom at the Summer Camp, Andy Lowe has kindly offered to co-ordinate and host an open breakfast on Zoom for the international Bodhicharya community on a monthly basis starting Sunday 9th August 2020.
White Tara and shamatha practice & discussion sessions on Zoom
Practice sessions on White Tara sadhana and shamatha meditation will be continued, probably once a week, and a discussion group on Rinpoche’s teachings on The Three Principal Aspects of the Path by Je Tsongkhapa, maybe once a month. These will be hosted on Zoom by Bodhicharya Ireland.
More info on these activities will follow soon.
If there are other open Zoom groups that will be continued after the Summercamp, please send us the details to be shared with the international Bodhicharya community.