A Silent Passage of Time

“If we open our eyes, if we open our minds, if we open our hearts, we will find that this world is a magical place.”  Choygam Trungpa Rinpoche Third Monday of the month. 7:00 pm. The reception room is buzzing with new students. I bow and quietly close the door. The fragrance of garbage wafts … Continue 

Silhouette of a person with a question mark above their head.

Basic Goodness? Get Real.

Have you ever had this reaction to learning about Shambhala’s foundational principle? There was a time when I certainly did. At that time in my life it just seemed preposterous to think that anyone, especially me, or anything, except maybe babies, was purely basically good. Anyone who believes that is seriously crazy! I remember thinking. … Continue 

Crocus

20s-30s Dharma Gathering: I Believe in Ambiguity

By Sarah Harris I used to listen to the radio show This I Believe on National Public Radio, and I was sad to see it end some years ago. What struck me about this show is that each five-minute episode featured one person speaking his or her truth about something meaningful. I found it touching … Continue 

Aiding

Aiding as a Practice

They say it’s better to give than to receive, and I had done a lot of receiving. The beautiful, potent teachings and tools I’d received at the DC Shambhala Center were helping me work with stress, gain clarity, face fears, and re-order my life, and I was profoundly grateful. I decided that I wanted to … Continue 

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How Should a Buddhist Respond to “Merry Christmas”?

For those of us who have formally taken refuge and changed our religious affiliation to Buddhism, the end of the year holiday season can pose some interesting challenges—one of which being, what to say in response to the myriad wishes of “Merry Christmas” that are bestowed upon us during the season. Naturally, each individual takes … Continue 

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Radical Compassion: A Report from Naropa’s 40th Anniversary

Imagine my surprise and delight to run into Jayne Sutton in Boulder, Colorado last month in the hallways of Naropa University. We had both come to participate in a symposium celebrating Naropa’s 40th anniversary. I was on home leave from my job in Vietnam, and Jayne was there with Rich Ann and Ariana Baetz and … Continue 

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Remembering a Precious One

My husband and I often refer to members of the original Washington, D.C., sangha as “POs” or Precious Ones. This is not just because they were special in their own right, but because they received their initial meditation instruction directly from the Vidyadhara, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. We recently lost a Precious One, Kathie Wykowski Paul, … Continue 

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Contemplating the Lotus

I am surrounded by lotus flowers. They are everywhere in Vietnam. Every pagoda has statues and paintings of the Buddha or other deities seated or standing on a lotus and usually a small pond where the flowers are growing. The lotus is a crop cultivated in large ponds to harvest the seeds that are used … Continue 

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Turning Toward Conflict with Fearless Compassion

In June of this year, the DC Shambhala Center will join with the Baltimore Shambhala Center to present a weekend workshop on Restorative Circles, a powerful process for working with conflict or trauma. Ann McKnight will lead this experiential program designed to provide a working basis for those who wish to establish this process in … Continue 

Icy Steps

Melting Our Habits

During one of our recent and bitterly cold Thursday nights, I rounded the corner by the Subway to discover what could only be a called a monolithic icefield (by an original southerner’s standards) at the base of the stairs by the Center. Since it was our open house night, this was soon to be a … Continue 

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