Volunteering is dharma Practice

In the Tibetan tradition of Buddhism, we often talk about the triad of view, meditation, and action as a framework for practice. View is the perspective from which we live and practice. The wider the view, the better. For example, the widest or highest view includes notions about the truth of things—such as impermanence—and the fact that all things are inter-connected.

Meditation is the practice of steeping one’s attention in the view moment by moment—noticing the truth of how things are—and action is carrying the wisdom and compassion that one acquires into daily life. Our Dekeling mind/heart training (Lojong practice) is one of the ways we practice the ‘action’ part of this formula. Another way that action and wisdom and compassion combine to nourish our awakening is in performing service to the sangha.

To support awakening and the causes of awakening one should practice generosity as much as possible. Included in this generosity is generosity to the three jewels, including the sangha (community). So, it is not just to keep Dekeling going that we ask for your participation as volunteers. It’s because it is part of our practice toolbox. Volunteering requires that we direct our attention to the needs of others. It inevitably brings us into situations where we meet the edge of our practice, thereby extending our patience and skill in living the dharma, gradually teaching us many things.

Dekeling has diverse volunteering needs—gardening, board members, fixing things, community member support, AV work, errands, fund-raising, website work, marketing and more. There are tasks that must be done from Portland and those that can be done online from afar. If you’d like to expand your practice by helping make the dharma available, please email Nan Whitaker-Emrich at nan5910@gmail.com. It’s a great way to meet new friends and deepen your dharma practice.

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