Summer Course building-up – come join the fun!

EC Blog News & Reports

Marking the EC’s International Summer Course in the calendar each year far in advance? “Check, of course!” Marking the building-up weeks before as a yearly fixture in one’s calendar? “Check, of course!” – for many friends who come every year to share work and joy for the benefit of all!

If just for a weekend or for the whole time being, and/or for the dismantling of the course infrastructure in the middle of August, you are most welcome to join the fun anytime! And now we let the pictures do the convincing talking of just how much fun it is…

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Thought construction activity has come to an end at the Europe Center? Think again!

The fieldbarn project is actually going to keep our carpenters, builders and helpers busy for the next four summers. This year, the first of four barns is being built up on the Summer Course plateau. The barns will provide storage place for all of the course equipment and more. This will save a lot of money on the long run because the rent for external dry storage space can be saved in the future.

The wooden barns are being built in the typical style of the Allgäu region, blending in perfectly with the typical landscape of woods and meadows with some field barns on them every now and then. And of course, they are being built by our wonderful voluntary builders and carpenters.

Feel like supporting the project? Helpers are always welcome (and might be rewarded with homemade field barn-cakes as well! :) )

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Rainbow Magic

June 17th, 2016

There was definitely at least one bright side to the extremely rainy weeks of late spring in the Allgäu – one of the most stunning double rainbows we have ever seen over the EC!

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As is EC tradition, we open the doors of the Villa every Sunday in June for our beautiful statue exhibition.

Visiting the statue exhibition, one can learn not only about the meaning of Buddhist statues and their profound symbolism. The heart of the annual statue exhibition is made of the collection of statues residing at the Europe Center. Many of them are used in the center’s daily life for Buddhist meditation practices. On top, there are always some „hidden treasures“ displayed, chosen especially for the occasion.

It might come as a surprise for people not familiar with Buddhism that Buddhist statues actually do not depict any gods—Buddha is not a god but rather reference to a perfect state of mind. The different forms, with precisely prescribed proportions, attributes and expressions, are thus symbolizing and reflecting various enlightened qualities of one’s own mind.

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Many of our friends surely remember how much hard work it was every year to build up the floor for the Summer Course kitchen tent. Great news – that’s history now!

Just to mention the most infamous of all kitchen floor tasks, tens of thousands of screws had to be put in and taken out again each year to provide a solid basis for the industry-size course kitchen on the rather swampy grounds of the kitchen plateau. The old system was simply taking lots of time and material and needed a great amount of helpers.

Therefore, based on the experience of 7 years, some friends developed a new system which is being put to practice for the first time this year.

A permanent basis in the ground is being installed. For this, 360 tubes with 360 huge screws of app. 1m length have to be put into drilled holes, app. 800 wooden beams have to be sawn to fitting length and connecting pieces have to be fixed on each beam. The beams will be dismantled and reinstalled every year, but the new system works without screws or metal angles.

Therefore, it will take a lot less time to build up the floor of the kitchen tent in the future.

We would very much like to thank the planners and the hard workers who braved pretty unpleasant weather conditions over the past weeks – and if you would like to still come and help, you are very welcome to do so!

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Recently we started to have a lecture by a Diamond Way Teacher every Saturday, and sometimes even for several lectures on one weekend.

Lama Ole Nydahl has asked more than 100 of his experienced students to travel and share their experience and knowledge of Diamond Way Buddhism around the world–the Diamond Way teachers.

We had the pleasure of welcoming teachers from Germany, Russia, Hungary, Israel, Slovenia, Italy and other countries over the past months, and many more of course still to come. Amongst others, the lecture topics were “Meditation, Action and View”, “The Sangha”, “The Student-Teacher-Relationship in Diamond Way Buddhism” and “The History of the Karma Kagyu Lineage”.

Please join us on Saturday evenings for the lectures and please check our Facebook page or event calendar for updates frequently!

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On the full moon day of May, Buddhists all over the world commemorate events of significance to Buddhists of all traditions: The birth, enlightenment and the parinirvana of Buddha Shakyamuni.

As Buddhism spread from India it was assimilated into many foreign cultures, and consequently Vesakh is celebrated in many different ways all over the world.

Thanks to superb weather, we were able to celebrate it with lots of meditation inside and outside, by making wishes for the good of all beings at the Stupa, as well as with a BBQ dinner (and watching soccer :) ) with lots of friends under the beautiful full moon shining over the EC.

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Welcome home, families!

May 10th, 2016

The so-called 2nd House of the Europe Center might not be the biggest of the buildings, but most certainly it’s one with a lot of life inside. It’s our family house. Come check it out!

Both resident and visiting families are bringing the old servants’ home of Gut Hochreute to life. With four families living there and often enough up to three more families visiting on the weekends or during the Summer Course, it might well be called courageous of two other single residents to live there as well – but they love it and so do we! :)

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Open House at the EC

April 24th, 2016

Whoever hadn’t seen the new Europe Center buildings got his or her chance at the Open House day with tours of the premises, the new buildings, the villa and of course the possibility to try a meditation as well. 

Surprise of the day was definitely the weather – all the fresh green and beautiful spring flowers sudenly got covered up with quite a few centimeters of snow! However, the Allgäu people say that there is no bad weather, there is just bad clothing! So the weather did not keep app. 500 visitors from checking out the EC and Diamond Way Buddhism!

Lots of lively exchange between visitors and Buddhists too place everywhere, with many questions answered and lots of laughter in between. Introductory talks and guided meditations in our beautiful meditation hall under the old roof of the barn were one option for the visitors, the guided tours of the old and new buildings were another. There was even the possibility for a glance through one of the open windows of the new building to get an impression of how the currently 38 inhabitants of the Europe Center live their everyday lives.

Of course, for those who missed this chance of getting to know the Europe Center and Diamond Way Buddhism and take part in a meditation, it is not too late: every Thursday at 7pm, anyone is welcome to join an introductory talk and the guided meditation in German language afterwards.

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To most of her many students and friends, Hannah Nydahl was not only an extraordinarily dedicated Buddhist practitioner and pioneer of Buddhism in the West, but also the epitome of kindness, compassion, wisdom and unconditional love for everybody.

She was often compared to the female Buddha aspect White Liberatrice (Skt. Sita Tara, Tib. Drolma Karmo or Drolkar). The weekend’s atmosphere somehow seemed to reflect this – dedicated meditation and love really were all around and clearly showed how her legacy is carried on in all our hearts.

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