Wednesday, February 21, 2007

FWBO London - Environmentalism

Maitreyabandhu2007 is a year of environmental activity at the London FWBO Centre. Our first major event of the year was ‘Planet Mind’ on 1 February, with meditation and a film screening of ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ at the Prince Charles Cinema, just off Leicester Square. More than 250 people attended the event, which started with meditation led by Maitreyabandhu (right), who also introduced Al Gore’s extraordinary film about climate change. It was an important and enjoyable gathering for the London sangha and others interested in meditation and the environment. The film really brings home the “persuasive argument that we can no longer afford to view global warming as a political issue - rather, it is the biggest moral challenge facing our global civilization.” The screening was a fundraiser for the Building for the 21st Century appeal, which aims to provide funds for transforming the LBC in time for its 30th anniversary in 2008.

There are a number of further environmental events happening throughout the year at the LBC, including days focusing on the six elements and the environment. We are also conducting an environmental audit of the ‘Buddhist Village’ in Bethnal Green and some of the households of people who come to the LBC to explore ways of reducing our collective ‘ecological footprint’. The results of the audit will be presented at Dharma Night at the LBC on Monday 19 February at the inaugural LBC Green Awards, and will also be posted on the LBC website.

The next major environmental event at the LBC is ‘One Earth day – The Ecology of Consciousness’, led by Guhyapati, who has been exploring the links between the Dharma and ecology for over 20 years. The day event offers a unique opportunity to explore environmental issues and the interconnectedness of our actions and consequences within the context of Buddhist teachings. It will highlight how the transformation of consciousness and the development of an ecological sensibility lie at the heart of a sustainable future. Drawing on the teachings of deep ecology, systems sciences and the Dharma, Guhyapati will offer key insights into how we can work together to support such a shift in our hearts and minds, our lives and society. It promises to be a day of thought-provoking discussion, meditation and reflection. Everyone is welcome (you do not need to be an environmental ‘expert’) We hope you can join us.

Story by Simon Okotie



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