On Saturday, July 25th, CGLF held our second annual Youth Gathering.
The Youth Gatherings aim to support young people belonging to Buddhist cultures in preserving and cultivating their traditions, and inspire them to put their spiritual practice into action through community activity and practical compassion.
You will have read how previous participants have been helping their communities since our last event.(If not, check this out…) Now it was the turn of participants from Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur to meet in Riwoche monastery in Boudha to hear teachings, presentations and take part in discussions and practical workshops.
The Gathering opened with a dharma talk by Lopön Urgyen Dorje from Ka-nying Shedrub Ling monastery (centre in group picture). He taught the very basis of Buddha’s teachings, the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path. Lopön Urgyen Dorje also spoke on the history of Buddhism – how Buddhism was brought to Tibet and gradually developed into the four main schools we have today, and he particularly emphasized the importance of connecting Dharma practice with one’s daily life.
Mahendra Rishal, key Ground Team member, talked about the aims, advantages and benefits of a Youth Network. He presented the idea of a network being beneficial for its direct participants as well as contributing to a wider youth community.
MC Chong, an independent business consultant from Malaysia, gave an inspiring presentation on the Six Paramitas (Perfections), with vivid examples of how they can be applied in daily life. He encouraged listeners to find their own personal ways of practicing the six Paramitas every day. This led to much lively discussion!
In between the talks (and excellent lunch!) participants also took part in several team-building games. In an atmosphere of fun and ease, the games demonstrated the importance of communication skills and coordination in achieving successful results. Through these games, as well as group discussions and presentations, participants also were able to transform what they had just learnt into direct personal experience.
We hope that this event will help preserve the Buddhist tradition shared by the young people who took part, as well as keeping their culture alive and connected to daily life through practical compassionate action.
Our warmest thanks to all those volunteers, speakers and participants who helped make this a truly successful and inspiring event.