Ready, set, go… Summer Course 2015, here we come!

EC Blog News & Reports

The building-up for 2015′s very special Summer Course at the EC has started.

Already now, several team members from different countries have arrived at the EC – to stay at least for the whole of July and way into August in order to help with building up the tents for the Summer Course. The very first things that need to be installed outside every year are electricity, water and the precise outlines of the areas for the tents. And of course, the tool workshop and team tent.

So with pretty obvious surplus and joy of reunion, the course build-up team is off to break its own records once again and is certainly going to grow by the day now. Good luck to them!

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As is tradition at the EC, we meditate in the Lama’s energy field when he comes to the Europe Center. This time, the meditation week was crowned by a weekend full of lectures with Lama Ole, packed with friends from everywhere – for the benefit of earthquake-stricken Nepal.

Half of all entry money, cake sales, karaoke singing at night and of course lots of generous donations on top went straight to the Nepal fund of the Diamond Way Buddhism Foundation, supporting the rebuilding of the monasteries at Kathmandu’s legendary Swayambhu Stupa. If you would also like to donate directly, you can find all the information right here:
http://swayambhu.buddhism-foundation.org/support/NepalEarthquake.php

Lama Ole, his wife Alexandra and Tomek Lehnert shared their impressions of Lama Ole’s visit to Kathmandu just before his arrival at the Europe Center. Some of the pictures of his visit there you can also look at by following the link above.

At 36°C in bright sunshine all weekend long, everybody made the most also of the breaks in between Mahamudra lectures and helping to run the kitchen or cleaning: swimming (and even yoga ;) ) in the lake, meditating in Karmapa’s garden at our Long Life Stupa or meeting old and new friends in the courtyard while enjoying a coffee from the open-air coffee bar, or getting explanations for their mediation practices underneath the apple trees in the garden.

What a weekend – to many it felt like a small Summer Course. And the big Summer Course is now anyway around the corner – thank you so much, Lama Ole, we very much look forward to seeing you again very soon!

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Not a single visit of Lama Ole at the EC without a tour of the construction site!

Aiming to be finished in time for the Summer Course so Gyalwa Karmapa can inaugurate the new building and our teachers and parts of the team can live and work in there already during the summer course, the construction works are progressing very fast at the moment.

Our carpentry team is now especially busy, working on furniture for the future guest rooms. So Lama Ole and Alexandra checked out the wood workshop and its impressive machinery already in use in the new building and tested a sample desk and bed in one of the rooms.

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Lama Ole Nydahl, his wife Alexandra and Tomek Lehnert finally returned home to the EC after a visit to the earthquake-struck city of Kathmandu in Nepal following months traveling the Americas. No corner without at least one smiling face could be found anywhere at the EC on the Lama’s arrival!

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High time for a sneak peek inside the new building: some of the rooms already look kind of ready to move in…

Okay, they only look like they are for now, but one can get a way better idea of what it will be like inside our new EC home: many walls have been painted, the wooden oak floor is already in place pretty much everywhere, the bathroom walls are being tiled and the sinks installed, or one can even get excited about switches and plugs that are … uhmmm… almost functioning already. ;)

The interiors surely are going to develop quickly now until the inauguration of the new building with Gyalwa Karmapa on August 2nd. We’ll keep you updated!

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EC spring would not be EC spring without some good friends from the neighboring sanghas keeping with tradition to come for a weekend of fun and helping to thoroughly clean the EC Villa.

No spider web is high enough not to be spotted, no gap too narrow to be cleaned – now the villa is really shining right in time for the statue exhibition starting on May 31st at 15:00. Every Sunday afternoon until June 28th, the Villa will be open to visitors to admire the precious Buddhist statue art on display in the monument-protected, century-old Art Nouveau building. As is tradition, the statue exhibition is going to be topped off by the annual Classical Music Summer Matinée under the arcades of Gut Hochreute on June 28th at 11am.

And last but not least, with a weekend of crawling under them, screwing and welding broken parts, our utility vehicles were well taken care of in order to be ready for the Summer course build-up and countless drives up and down the mountain transporting people and cargo wherever needed.

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The EC has grown over the last year and the Summer Course will grow this year. Lucky enough, this year for the first time we had much more space to host the friends and for the team to have meetings all over the place.

Since the Summer Course is going to take place one week earlier than usual this year and we will be able to welcome H.H. the 17th Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje, Jigme Rinpche, Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche and Lama Ole Nydahl along with many guests for the inauguration of the new buildings and two weeks packed with program, many details in its organization need to be adapted accordingly.

But that’s by far not the only thing that will be very different this year. In time for the course, the rooms in the new building are going to be ready for use. And what better way to inaugurate them on a practical level than by hosting our highest teachers in their new rooms and friends from all over the world doing their Summer course teams’ work for the course inside of them! There will be meeting rooms, laundry kitchen, accommodation and more for parts of the team in the new building.

Also nice to know for everyone coming for the summer course: our beautiful new gompa will be open for everyone to do their personal meditation practice also during the course. Below on the ground floor, the course’s Dharma shops of the course will transform our Pub into a shopping paradise.

The Summer Course team is ready for the building-up weekends and warmly invites everyone to join them for the joyful building up of 2015′s International Summer Course at the Europe Center!

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Beautiful EC Spring

May 17th, 2015

Every year around May, the Allgäu region turns yellow for a few weeks, with a few white and pink spots in between. By popular demand, here’s our annual blog post celebrating the beauty of nature coming back to life. We let the pictures do the talking!

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The terraces above the Europe Center are getting a new look: many apple trees have been planted over the past weeks, lining the paths leading up to the summer course plateau. This will give the plateau a beautiful park-like atmosphere, protect the slopes from landslides and provide shading for the tents.

Even in the pouring rain, our sangha friends dug holes, put wire fence protection for the roots, carefully put the young trees into the ground, protecting the stems with covers and tying them to wooden poles so they will stay in place in any kind of Allgäu weather. We are looking forward to lots of beautiful white and pink apple blossoms on our hill next spring. For the apples, we might still have to wait another year or two. ;)

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To support the construction works, our sangha is taking over quite a few jobs as well by now. Doing what is possible ourselves saves thousands of Euros – and it’s fun as well!

As soon as the weather conditions allowed, the works for our future terrace in front of the barn started, measuring the area, preparing the base and drilling huge screws into the ground. Every weekend, the construction site of the new building is tidied up and cleaned.

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