Pebbles Newsletter - 15 March 2020
Dear Pebbles Friend
We have received a communication from our Community of Interbeing Trustees regarding Sangha meetings in light of the Covid-19 virus. We are hoping to continue to meet at Patcham Community Centre on the dates listed on our website www.pebblessangha.com until the government issues advice to stop all non-essential indoor public gatherings for small numbers of people. You can keep up to date with the government's advice here: gov.uk. Therefore, you are very welcome, as ever, to come and practise with us on Saturdays, the next meeting being on 21st March. However, if you have any symptoms that you think may be contagious, or have been in close contact with someone with such symptoms, please consider others and stay at home. If you do attend in person, there are a couple of things you can do:
Offering a smile and a bow - recognising the Buddha nature in all beings - is an established and deep element of our practice that we can all share freely in place of hand shakes and hugs. Where a hand or a hug is offered we can smile and decline politely, recognising that a solid individual practice has immediate benefit for others too.
Remember to wash your hands in accordance with government advice. You may have a favourite Plum Village song that you can sing to prolong the hand-washing routine!
Online opportunities to practise
We will all do our best to make sure that our beloved Sangha is safe. However, if you decide you would rather not risk being amongst others, there is a meeting on Zoom that you are welcome to attend, on Sundays, beginning today.
The format will include 20 mins of guided meditation, introductions and weather reports; sharing of a short teaching by Thay (book, YouTube clip, audio file etc), plus an opportunity for dharma sharing before bringing the meeting to a close.
This weekly group meeting will be a space to generate the energy of Mindfulness and to continue to be with each other; also developing confidence in online Sanghas so that friends around the country feel comfortable meeting and facilitating in this way.
The first session will be facilitated by Kevin Place, a member of Nourishing Peace Sangha in Stourbridge, and also World Interbeing Sangha online. Kev is an active member of the Plumline online facilitators group and is working with friends around the world to help our beloved community come together online.
If you click on the following link, it will take you directly to the Zoom meeting: https://zoom.us/j/133342630 The guided meditation will begin shortly after 5pm, so please feel welcome to arrive and settle in a little early, and if you are a few minutes late don’t worry, simply please mute your microphone and settle into place.
At our next Beachcombers meeting, we will discuss online facilitation and having a dedicated Pebbles Sangha Zoom meeting platform.
May you be peaceful, happy and at ease in body and spirit.
Vivien and Barry
“The present moment is the substance with which the future is made. Therefore, the best way to take care of the future is to take care of the present moment. What else can you do?”
— Thich Nhat Hanh, The Art of Mindful Living