I was recently asked to become part of the Spiritual Director ‘s group of the Dharma Centre. The idea behind the spiritual directors is to have a group of senior students that can act as a guiding voice to help support the DC remaining true to the vision of its guiding teacher Namgyal Rinpoche. I have thought a lot recently about lineage and tradition and what place they have in my own life as well as in the life of the D.C. and the spreading of the Buddha Dharma in the west.
The Dharma at its essence is spontaneous open and free yet it is traditions that have allowed beings to study and practice in meaningful ways that lead to this essence. Without being anchored in tradition or without the guidance of a qualified teacher it is very easy to lose one's way. One of the big questions for us as a community is how do we carry these traditions forward and remain relevant to the changing times. No easy answers, but one we can and are working together on. The vast array of teachings and practices that Namgyal Rinpoche offered us have an incredible transformative power to those who choose to sincerely apply them. I feel we have an obligation to carry this forward to the best of our abilities and make sure we make these teachings accessible and relevant to the changing times. Whenever I step foot on DC property I feel the powerful presence of Rinpoche and the many teachings and Dharma truths that he so skillfully manifested. What will we manifest ? What will we bring forward ? What a joy to be part of this ! The D.C board are a hard working group that are committed to the continuing unfoldment of Namgyal Rinpoche’s vision and I am honoured that they want me to be part of this. May all beings awaken quickly !
Jack Connelly, Spiritual Director