Welcome to the Pure Land Centre News. This page contains a list of news in reverse chronological order (most recent first)
Fear, Stress and Anxiety  Posted 29 Aug 2018
As we approach our death, it is natural to experience fear, stress and anxiety. People often say, “I’m not afraid of death; it’s the pain and turmoil of dying that worries me.” Others are genuinely concerned about leaving behind everything that has any meaning to them, their family and friends, their possessions, and losing their faculties and ultimately their body. “What will happen to me?” So it is good to learn now about the causes of fear and anxiety and to practice their antidotes. However, modern life is not a help in this regard, because many of us live in constant states of fear, stress or anxiety. This is not necessarily to do with dying; it is the nature of modern life.
As chronic stress becomes a global epidemic, our stress response is being studied intensively to see if we can unwind its mysteries. It turns out that our perspective has a surprising amount of influence over our body’s stress response. When we turn a threat into a challenge, our body responds very differently. What we need is stress resilience. This involves turning what is called ‘threat stress’, or the perception that a stressful event will harm us, into what is called ‘challenge stress’, or the perception that a stressful event is a challenge that will help us grow.
The remedy is quite straightforward. One simply notices the flight-or-fight response in one’s body – the beating heart, the pulsing blood, or the tingling feeling in our hands or face, the rapid breathing – then remembers that these are natural responses to stress and that our body is just preparing to rise to the challenge.
Read more on Fear, Stress and Anxiety
 Extracts from: The Book of Joy, by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams, Hutchinson: London 2016, selected by Len Warren.
Coping with Pain  Posted 20 Aug 2018
“Archbishop Tutu, many people, when they get ill, don’t feel very joyful. You’ve been able to maintain that joy in the face of suffering. How have you been able to do it?”
“Well, I have certainly been helped by many other people. One of the good things is realizing you are not a solitary cell. You are part of a wonderful community. That’s helped very greatly. As we were saying, if you set out to be joyful, you are not going to end up being joyful. You’re going to find yourself turned in on yourself. It’s like a flower. You open, you blossom, because of other people. And I think suffering, maybe even intense suffering, is a necessary ingredient for life, certainly for developing compassion.
The Dalai Lama agreed, “So as you have rightly mentioned, a self-centred attitude is the source of the problem. We have to take care of ourselves without selfishly taking care of ourselves. If we don’t take care of ourselves, we cannot survive. We need to do that. We should have wise selfishness, rather than foolish selfishness. Foolish selfishness means you just think only of yourself, don’t care about others, bully others, exploit others. In fact taking care of others, helping others, ultimately is the way to discover your own joy and to have a happy life. So that is what I call wise selfishness.”
Read more on Coping with Pain
 Excerpts from: The Book of Joy, by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams, Hutchinson: London 2016, selected by Len Warren.
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The Meaning of Life  Posted 8 Aug 2018
In 2015, His Holiness the Dalai Lama turned eighty. Archbishop Desmond Tutu made a special trip from South Africa to Dharamsala to be with his old friend and to discuss in depth how to find joy in the face of our daily troubles. The record of this meeting is The Book of Joy. There is a wonderful section about the meaning of life, and excerpts are presented below.
There is perhaps thing more joyous than birth, and yet so much of our life is spent in sadness, stress and suffering.
No dark fate determines the future. We do. Each day and each moment we are able to create and re-create our lives and the very quality of human life on the planet. This is the power we wield.
Lasting happiness cannot be fund in pursuit of any goal or achievement. It does not reside in fortune or fame. It resides only in the human mind and heart, and it is here that we must hope to find it.
“Joy,” as Archbishop Tutu said during his momentous week-long meeting with His Holiness the Da-lai Lama, “is much bigger than happiness. While happiness is often seen as being dependent on cir-cumstances, joy is not.” This state of mind – and heart – is much closer to both the Dalai Lama’s and the Archbishop Tutu’s understanding of what animates our lives and what ultimately leads to a life of satisfaction and meaning.
“One great question underlies our existence,” the Dalai Lama says, “What is the purpose of life? After much consideration, I believe the purpose of life is to find happiness. It does not matter whether one is a Buddhist like me, or a Christian like the Archbishop, or any other religion, or no religion at all. From the moment of birth every human being wants to discover happiness and to avoid suffering.”
Read more on The Meaning of Life
 Excerpts from: The Book of Joy, by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams, Hutchinson: London 2016, compiled by Len Warren.
The Nine-Point Death Meditation  Posted 1 Aug 2018
The nine-point meditation on death is a powerful meditation that can motivate you into studying and practising the spiritual teachings. You can overcome your laziness. You can decide: “I must not postpone my practice day after day because something more important crops up.”
The nine main points are summarised below. For a MORE detailed explanation of their meaning, see The Nine-Point Death Meditation
Death is certain: no power in the universe can stop death; with every moment that passes I come closer to my death; the free time I have left in my life to study and practise the spiritual teachings is extremely limited.
The time of death is most uncertain: the lifespan in our realm and time is uncertain; the things that kill us are many, the things that keep us alive are few; in general, the body is extremely fragile.
Only my mental and spiritual qualities will help at the time of death: no money or possessions can help me; family and friends cannot help; not even my own body can help me at the time of death.
 From: Extended Lam-Rim Outlines: Beginners’ Meditation Guide, compiled by Karin Valham, Kopan Monastery, Kathmandu, 2007, (Page 24) and Venerable Thubten Dondrub’s teachings at Hayagriva Buddhist Centre. Presented by Len Warren to 24th Annual Reiki Day on 1 July 2018.
Harpist: Shamarra de Tissera
Venue: Hayagriva Buddhist Centre
64 Banksia Terrace, Kensington WA
Donation: $30 p.p.
On Saturday 14 July the Pure Land Project will present something very special, The Harp Concert, with harpist Shamarra de Tissera.
This is our first fundraising event and we would be so pleased to see you and your family or friends on the night. The hall at Hayagriva Buddhist Centre holds about 70 people so if you want to reserve seats, please use our online booking form below.
Start of concert
Optional Extra (for those who wish to stay longer)
Shamarra de Tissera is the President of the Harp Society of Western Australia, runs a private music studio teaching harp, voice and piano and plays therapeutic music in private homes, hospitals and aged care. Shamarra is in collaboration with Amana Living Aged Care.
Thanks to Penni Sutton for creating the image.
Bookings have closed for this event
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Reflections on Bendigo Retreat by Anita Field Posted 1 May 2018
By Anita Field, of the Pure Land of the Indestructible Buddha
I loved being at the Stupa in Bendigo – the feeling at the retreat was that we were all enveloped by a great kindness. I attended for the first two weeks. It was my first time visiting the Stupa – it was spectacular (even though the building is not yet finished).
The retreat team did a fantastic job transforming the inside of the stupa from a building site to a stunning sacred space. The gigantic Tara thangka bathed the place in beauty and the gompa became more beautiful as each day passed as more thangkas, offerings and lights were offered.
The daily prayers and teachings were inspiring, as was sitting amongst the large gathering of Sangha, Dharma students and FPMT family from around Australia and the world.
In addition to the great fortune of just being there, I was also blessed by the opportunity to meet with Lama Zopa Rinpoche about the Pure Land Project, which has recently been approved by FPMT as one of its new groups. I accompanied the Chair of the project and fellow HBC member, Len Warren. That meeting was definitely a highlight of the two weeks. I was sad to leave when it was time to return to Perth, but the benefit of having attended is immeasurable.
Unfinished Business Posted 1 May 2018
Most of us accumulate one or more unhappy or unsatisfactory relationships during our life. Then, as death approaches, they prey on our mind, and can make us very unsettled. But we can’t bring ourselves to meet the persons concerned and try to heal the hurts. Or maybe they live far away, and there is no chance of a face-to-face meeting.
Christine Longaker, in her book Facing Death and Finding Hope, gives a method of healing a relationship and completing such ‘unfinished business’, that does not require you to meet with or talk with the person with who has hurt you or whom you have hurt. I have tried it on three people and for two it worked easily, the third took a few attempts, but I got there. So I can recommend it to you.
For more go to Healing a Relationship by Completing Unfinished Business
Pure Land Becomes an FPMT Study Group Posted 20 Mar 2018
By Len Warren, Chairperson of the Pure Land of the Indestructible Buddha
On 1 March 2018, the Day of Miracles, there was great excitement amongst members of the Pure Land Committee (Len, Anita, Sue, Jason, Stella, Penni and Lucy) when we received an email from Claire at FPMT headquarters. This is how the email began:
‘On this very auspicious and merit-multiplying day, I am delighted to tell you that Lama Zopa Rinpoche says it is beneficial for the Pure Land of the Indestructible Buddha to go forward as a new ‘independent’ FPMT Study Group.’
This is wonderful news and the Pure Land Committee extends its heartfelt thanks to Claire and to members of the Executive Committee of the Hayagriva Buddhist Centre for their help and advice.
Our official FPMT title is now: ‘FPMT Study Group (Probationary Hospice Service)’. What this means is that there are two stages to becoming a ‘fully-fledged FPMT Hospice Service’, first become a Study Group, then after a probationary period, become a fully affiliated FPMT Hospice Service.
It is wonderful to have Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s endorsement and blessings. I know I am not alone in my complete confidence in Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s wisdom and foresight. If Lama Zopa says it is beneficial for us to go ahead, then I believe that things will go well for us, bearing in mind that we do live in samsara and are subject to karma and disturbing conceptions, which means that it will not all be plain sailing, and that we need to continue to create good karma.
It is also marvellous to have the official stamp of FPMT on our group. FPMT is a global organization with 160 centres, services and groups. It is part of a lineage that has been passed down to us via realized lamas and their disciples from the time of the Buddha.
The Pure Land of the Indestructible Buddha, or the Pure Land for short, aspires in the long term to develop a centre which offers a safe and caring environment for those suffering terminal conditions, who wish to end their lives in a spiritual environment.
To that end, we first plan a pilot study to see if the project is viable and can be run with the resources that we are able to obtain, and can, indeed, meet its objectives safely and effectively.
Our committee looks forward to up-dating you on our progress as we move forward in our quest to bring the Pure Land to a reality.