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I’m up in Vermont again this summer. I’ve been coming here since 2006 to be with my teacher, Venerable Dhyani Ywahoo and be in community with the Sunray Meditation Society folks that I’ve come to know and love. This year, I’m not camping. I have a lot of work, so I made it easier for me to be in a house not too far from the Peace Village where the teachings are.
We’re preparing for the Sunray Peace Village Elder’s Gathering, a 3-day event that starts on Friday. They’ve been doing it on the last weekend of July for 35 years, gathering elders from many nations – Native American and indigenous elders from other countries, as well. It’s a lot of fun! If you are in the area, please come by – or maybe make a drive! It’s gorgeous here.
One of the things I love about the Sunray community is its diversity — diversity of people and diversity in nature. With all the different kinds of trees and birds, and everywhere we look in nature, is this endless display of diversity, plus people from around the world. I love diversity, and I find it comforting. It’s one of the reasons why I enjoy these Elders Gatherings – everyone looks and sounds so different, but our hearts feel the same.
I love that the days are filled with SO MUCH gratitude to our Creator, for our life, for the good in our life, for the food, the weather, and the opportunity to be together.
It takes MANY people working many long days in order to pull this event off. (I would love to share pictures, but the best parts are not to be photographed, they’re to be experienced.) Some of us are doing things we’ve never done before, some of us are trying out our talents and gifts.
We’re almost always outside all day and I love that.
I love to see the wise Elders being respected and listened to. They have SO MUCH to share that’s helpful. I spent as much time as I could with my grandparents and I really enjoyed listening to them. To me, people are more interesting than movies, books or television. For me, there’s nothing more interesting than a good conversation that leads to a new understanding of the Beauty of life.
It’s powerful to see how affecting it is to us all, to be able to bask in the teachings of these ones and to remember the native ways of viewing the world.
I notice that I’ve become increasingly disinterested in movies, books and television unless they’re sharing truth and insight. Most stories aren’t interesting to me at all anymore. If I can’t feel the heart, it feels dull. I’d much rather have a great conversation with someone about their life and what they’re learning at any age!
Being able to speak, write, and teach in a way that touches hearts is a powerful and beautiful thing. It’s really great fun!
In this world of extraordinary diversity, who are the wise elders that you most admire and listen to? Please share in the comments section below!
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