Welcome spring, welcome new beginnings – A Mesage from Lama Surya Das

Spring greetings from the fragrant hills overlooking Malibu, where we’ve just completed our annual spring Dzogchen Center’s weeklong Southern California retreat. The Franciscan mission-style Serra Retreat Center– built long ago on the burned out ruins of an original hilltop mansion here, called “The Castle of Emptiness”, created a perfect atmosphere of gentle quietude for our week of Dzogchen practice, sangha friendships old and new, and “koinonia” (spiritual communion and transformation). Their lovely meditation hall, complete with huge panoramic windows, coupled with vast ocean and mountain views, made skygazing meditations and prayerful devotions, along with daily mindful nature walks, all the more satisfying, especially in these tumultuous times. A new retreatant said she felt as if she’d “landed here at a retreat for angels.” Another told me, in a private guidance-interview: “I lived in a beautiful ice palace. This practice has really opened my heart, melted the frozenness, and almost ripped my guts out. I go home transformed and curious to see what’s next on this path.”

It was hard to beat the mid-March blizzard and get out of Boston by plane two weeks ago as I headed to Boulder, CO, where I was honored to give Naropa University’s Distinguished Lecture sponsored by the Lenz Foundation for American Buddhism. My visit allowed for time to visit with students and staff as well as teach a few classes. How wonderful to see so many avid young folks, and dedicated faculty and staff too. It was refreshing, inspiring, thought-provoking, and a bit challenging as well. Each and every Buddhist community is somewhat different. I finished my time in Boulder at Ken Wilber’s Integral Center, where our dedicated Boulder sangha held a day-long Saturday meditation retreat– the perfect way to end my stay!

This being my first travel in almost five months, unusual for me; it feels so good to be back in the saddle again. I’ve missed communing with my students and teaching actual meditation. And while my hip recuperation period is almost over, I’ll continue on with a bit more physical therapy and exercise, longevity practice, and chanting for a better world and more peace, harmony, mutual understanding, loving-kindness and cooperation. I hope to see ya in July for our next Dzogchen Center meditation retreat in Garrison, NY.

Welcome spring, welcome new beginnings!

With love and blessings,
Lama Surya Das

For more details about Lama Surya Das feel free to visit: https://lamasuryadasmarried.tumblr.com

A message from Lama Surya Das Join the We Volution

Happy belated Valentine’s Day, mutual lovers and secret spirit-sharers. I hope your heart is full and mind open, wings of spirit unfolding and soul nourished and at home.

Nina Simone sings:

“I wish I could share

All the love that’s in my heart

Remove every doubt

It keeps us apart

And I wish you could know

What it means to be me

Then you’d see and agree

Every man should be free”

I have been thinking about civil rights and society, and human rights in general, all winter, and hope you are too, and moreover eschewing and uprooting the roots of hatred and violence in your hearts and mind, body and soul. Fundamentalist-inspired violence and extreme dogmatic views seems like the bane of this modern world, bringing us all down. Let’s not just sit around twiddling our meditation and texting thumbs, let’s join the we-volution for a better world and brighter future to be possible!

We is the new iye.

Speaking about the weather, I just returned from Ram Dass’ house on Maui to blizzards pilin’ upon blizzards here in the Pilgrim State– What’s Wrong With This Picture? And yet, my heart is afire after co-meditating daily with the old Spiritual Lion himself, and being here now together after all these decades. He remains committed and devoted as ever to “passing Loving awareness on, soul to soul” and to being one with one and all, guru and God. May this year be one of spiritual harmony and attunement, convergitation and communitation. And when our time comes, as it eventually must to all of us, may we pass gently into the Light in a gorgeous manner!

With love,

Lama Surya Das