EC kids in action

EC Blog News & Reports

EC kids in action

November 15th, 2014

Once a week on our kids afternoon, many of the parents and kids living in Immenstadt come together at the EC. This time, beautiful paintings and aquariums made of card board boxes, toilet paper rolls and a lot of love and enthusiasm were created.

While the children are having a great time attended by some of the parents, the other moms and dads meditate upstairs in the gompa, help with dharma activities in the center or can simply relax and exchange a bit. This way, everyone benefits: the kids, the parents and the Europe Center – and of course everyone who might be lucky enough to get one of the pretty aquariums as a gift from the kids!

Next task for the EC kids afternoons? Lots of christmas preparations from handicraft to baking lots of yummy xmas cookies for moreEC, of course. ;) You are welcome to join the fun!

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Our shining new Buddha statue

November 10th, 2014

Probably it is not exaggerated to say that pretty much everyone who has been to our gompa until now has fallen in love with our new Buddha. One of the biggest Buddha statue manufactured in the West until today, it is truly a class and blessing of its own.

All the items for filling the statue were collected around the world, the whole sangha worked together on this: mantra rolls were produced in the centers, many friends gave jewels or dried flowers and herbs from their gardens. During this year’s summer course, everything was brought to the EC from all over the world before Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche and Lama Ole filled and blessed the statue.

[ECTV]: New Buddha arrives in the new EC meditation hall

The shiny surface of the statue perfectly mirrors our beautiful new gompa, so it was a real challenge for our photographer and his team to take professional pictures of the statue. A photo tent was built up and every ray of light was calculated precisely to take pictures of the statue which can also be used for books and other media independent of its surroundings.

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EC Mandala Tour 2014

November 2nd, 2014

Because of the ever-growing number of Buddhists moving to Immenstadt and surroundings in order to live close by and benefit the Europe Center, we have a very nice tradition: checking out our sangha’s houses and flats on our Mandala tour.

Already for the fourth time, we visited friends in their homes and were welcomed in each flat or house with something nice to drink and some snacks. Starting in the early afternoon, we drove and walked our way up and down through Immenstadt and Bühl, admiring 5 beautiful homes, finding time for chats with many friends and eating up pretty much all the delicacies their owners offered. We rounded off the day with a long night of joyful dancing and chatting at the Villa in Immenstadt, well taken care of by the friends living there.

Many thanks to everyone who opened their doors for their hospitality, friendship, and all the many different kinds of activity they are supporting the Europe Center with!

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Once or twice a year, the EC team members living in and around Immenstadt take some quality time together. Often enough in times busier than autumn, the running events keep us so busy and well-entertained that there is not much time left to talk to the people actually living next door to you.

That’s why we have the EC Team weekends. Time for taking time: to meditate together, to get each other updated about what’s going on in our lives, get to know friends who recently moved to Immenstadt from somewhere on this planet, to check out some friends’ houses and flats in Immenstadt on the Mandala tour, bake cookies, dance the nights away… and okay, let’s admit we also had great fun working outside together on Saturday afternoon – even the “bats” normally stuck behind their computers found their way out into the sun! ;-)

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The months of October and November are traditionally more quiet at the EC – lots of time to focus on meditation, getting the place ready for winter and spending quality time with friends! And the brightly colored foliage, clear air and bright sunshine bring along  lots of opportunities for beautiful pictures, especially in the morning hours.

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Ten days of project days at the EC are over for Lama Ole and everyone who came for the Mediation Weeks and the Transmission Weekend.

Continuing and rounding off a time of lively exchange and action with his students, Lama Ole met with the currently present residents of the Europe Center for dinner and afterwards went straight to the gompa to guide a meditation and give blessing to everyone. Early the next morning, he drove off to the train station to catch a train to the centers meeting in Braunschweig, accompanied by several students and making best use of the train as a mobile office.

Thank you for the wonderful time, dearest Lama, and see you in December!

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In between a lot of work at the desk answering emails of his students, Lama Ole still found some time to help our outdoor team with one of the recurring yearly activities: tidying up the waterfall coming down right at the EC’s road.

In a forest region like Allgäu with sometimes extremely stormy weathers, this does not just mean getting a few branches slowing down the flow of the falling water,. It is also about pulling out some serious logs and rocks blocking the waterfall with heavy machinery. Lama Ole spontaneously decided to drive the wheel loader himself. Great to see him back in excellent shape after his successful neck surgery earlier this year!

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The first of our Transmission Weekends in the new gompa had to be a very, very special one – and it was. Lama Ole Nydahl, Maggie Lehnert-Kossowski, Caty Hartung and Tomek Lehnert shared their memories and lessons learnt of the times with one of the greatest Lamas of our time bringing Buddhism to the West – the late Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche.

For the first time in seven years, our happy event management did not have to worry about fitting everyone into the lecture hall. 800 people who had come for all over Europe easily found their places in our new gompa. For the photo presentations, the two big screens gave everyone front row seats.

Opening the weekend with a lecture about the importance of the student-teacher relationship in Diamond Way Buddhism, Tomek shared inspiring stories from four decades and his countless travels with Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche, Lama Ole and Hannah Nydahl. The next day, Tomek’s sister Maggie, Rinpoche’s personal attendant of more than 20 years, had a very special guest in the audience listening and contributing to her shared memories of his teacher – Lama Ole! Later on also together with Caty and Tomek, they brought Rinpoche and his blessing touchingly close to everyone present, no matter if people still had met Rinpoche personally or not.

Once again, it became very clear why the Karma Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism is the lineage of unbroken oral transmission going back without interruption to Buddha Shakyamuni himself. There are so many stories full of fascination, blessing and transmission that books could simply not transmit so intensely!

We would very much like to thank Lama Ole, Maggie, Caty and Tomek for everything they shared, all friends present for coming and helping with making this weekend as unforgettable as it was!

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Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche was born in Bhutan in 1918 and was one of the greatest masters of Tibetan Buddhism.

As a boy he was ordained as a monk in Bhutan’s largest monastery in Phunaka Dzong. He trained with important teachers from all of the main Tibetan Buddhist schools, especially the Drukpa Kagyu and Karma Kagyu lineages. After meeting H.H. the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa in Bhutan in 1944, Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche became his close student and received from him the transmission of the Karma Kagyu Lineage. Their relationship was such that the 16th Karmapa once said “If I am Buddha, Lopön Tsechu is my Ananda”

From his base in Kathmandu, Nepal, he was a key figure in nurturing the development of Buddhism in Nepal following the occupation of Tibet by China. A close friend and confidante of the former King of Nepal, he exerted a formidable influence throughout the diverse Buddhist community in Nepal and was respected both as a great lama and also a skilled politician.

Rinpoche became the first teacher of Hannah and Lama Ole Nydahl, and was a huge inspiration behind their work in establishing Diamond Way Buddhism in the West. At the invitation of Lama Ole Nydahl, Rinpoche first came to the West in 1988 to give teachings and transmissions to many students. Over the next 15 years Rinpoche touched thousands of people in Europe, Russia,  North and South America with his inconceivable compassion, wisdom and enlightened qualities.

Rinpoche built many stupas, monuments symbolising the enlightened mind of the Buddha, in both the East and the West. The crown jewel of his career and one of his greatest legacies is the Enlightenment Stupa in Benalmadena, Spain. Also the Stupa of Long Life in the garden of the Europe Center was built and originally consecrated by Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche.

Rinpoche passed away on on June 10th, 2003. In Lama Ole Nydahl’s words paying tribute to his beloved late teacher:

»People’s lives are their most complete teachings.
Lopön Tsechu Rinpoche showed us mind’s power.
«


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Even with the weather, we could not have been more lucky with the first Transmission Weekend in the new building. Summer-like T-Shirt temperatures and bright sunshine all weekend long – and easy to see that everyone made the best of it!

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