Welcome to the Pure Land Centre News. This page contains a list of news in reverse chronological order (most recent first)
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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
On entry xtras1=7
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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.
What is Tibetan Medicine? Posted 22 Feb 2018
Have you ever wondered what Tibetan medicine is all about? Tibetan medicine is an holistic method of treating mental and physical sickness. It is concerned very much with the causes of disease. The ultimate cause is said to be one of the disturbed or deluded states of mind: desirous attachment, anger, jealousy, pride and so on. These cause an imbalance in the body’s systems. First, one has to change the type of food one eats, and one’s behaviour. Only then is the physician advised to prescribe medicine.
For more explanation see Tibetan Medicine in Brief
Helping the Dying a Big Responsibility Posted 15 Jan 2018
Lama Zopa Rinpoche, in his book How to Enjoy Death says that a good rebirth depends upon dying peacefully, with virtuous thoughts. If we die with anger, strong attachment or fear, our births will only be in the lower realms.
Lama Zopa: “Therefore the people surrounding the person who is dying – friends, family, professional caregivers – have a big responsibility. I will put it this way: Whatever arises in your loved one’s mind, whether their thoughts are virtuous or non-virtuous, very much depends on you and the other helpers, how you behave toward them. It is a great responsibility. If you are not careful, if you do not have this education – that the way you behave affects the mind of the person and therefore their future life – you will only harm them, not help them.”
For more on this topic see Helping the dying a big responsibility.
Book Review – How to Enjoy Death by Lama Zopa Rinpoche Posted 2 Jan 2018
How to Enjoy Death
Preparing to Meet Life’s Final Challenge Without Fear
by Lama Zopa Rinpoche
compiled and edited by Robina Courtin
Wisdom Publications: Somerville USA 2016
Sooner or later, you will come face to face with your own death. And maybe before then, someone who is near and dear to you will die. Today you may say, “Oh, I’ll deal with death when the time comes. I’m not worried.” But when the end is near, for you or a loved one, chances are you will be upset, afraid, regretful of lost opportunities, unable to think straight, and not sure what to do.
That is when you can turn to this marvellous book, How to Enjoy Death, and easily find some simple advice, distilled into everyday language by Robina Courtin, from forty-five years of wise and practical teachings by Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
However, it may take a close brush with death for you to realize then that it may be too late to wait till the Lord of Death knocks on your door, and that what you really need to do is to prepare yourself now, without delay. With that positive motivation, there is no better reference book to guide your investigations and your actions than How to Enjoy Death.
It is a beautifully presented book, with gold edges to the pages and the feel of a precious resource. Why is it precious? Lama Zopa Rinpoche explains why from the Buddhist viewpoint, death is important: “Helping our loved ones at the time of death is the best service we can offer them, our greatest gift. Why? Because death is the most important time of life: it’s at death the next rebirth is determined.”
Lama Zopa Rinpoche begins by teaching us how to think about death and rebirth, the stages of the death process, and the spiritual opportunity that occurs as you die. Next, Rinpoche gives targeted advice on what to do before death, including what to see and touch, what to think about, what to hear, what to meditate on, and what to do when the breath stops. Next are clear instructions about what to do after the breath has stopped but the mind is still in the body. Lastly, Rinpoche explains what to do after the mind has left the body.
To sample the clarity and wisdom in Rinpoche’s book, follow the link to We Must Prepare for Death