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Sri Lanka Impressions June 02

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  • christine_forsyth
    Dear All, GETTING THERE: Getting to the starting point is often a lot of fun when meeting friends in Bangkok. This time travelling from Brisbane to Bangkok
    Message 1 of 8 , Jun 17, 2002
    • 0 Attachment
      Dear All,

      GETTING THERE:
      Getting to the starting point is often a lot of fun when meeting
      friends in Bangkok. This time travelling from Brisbane to Bangkok
      via Singapore, I had an inquisitive Singaporean two year old sitting
      on her Indonesian Nanny's lap next to me. Smiling eyes, playing the
      game of "I'll hand you everything in the seat pocket, and you hand it
      back to me." Eventually she went to sleep and I got a chance to read
      Nina's "Perfections leading to Enlightenment" - 52 pages on my
      printer. Thank you Nina, I found it absorbing, it stimulated
      reflection, and I look forward to learning more on the second
      reading shortly. I feel the phrase "whatever comes, let it come" may
      have been an omen.....
      Landing in Singapore at 6.30 p.m. was a lesson about 'no control'. A
      series of announcements through the evening changed the departure
      gate three times, from one end of the terminal to the other <groan>,
      and delayed departure until "who knows when" the next day. The
      Acapella singers, the live game shows and the on-line gambling were a
      little at odds with the alert armed soldiers in patrol formation
      carefully moving through the crowds.
      At 4.00 a.m. I checked into the Transit Hotel and rebooked my ticket
      on another airline who could guarantee I would get to Bangkok in time
      to join the tour to Sri Lanka. Changi Airport is an interesting
      place to be marooned (though I did feel I might have wandered into
      the song lyrics of "Hotel California") ....
      "Last thing I remember, I was running for the door
      I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
      'Relax' said the nightman, We are programed to receive.
      You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave"

      What I thought of as the 'Singapore Debacle' was viewed in a
      different way by the man sitting next to me on the Singapore/Bangkok
      sector. He noticed I was reading Nanamoli Thera's "The Practice of
      Loving Kindness" and introduced himself. He is a practising Buddhist
      and saw the overnight delay as fortuitous, something to be delighted
      and joyful about, as it caused us to meet. (Hard to remember the
      meaning of fortuitious after 28 hours without sleep.). We had a
      lovely two hours of Dhamma discussion and I told him all about the
      Yahoo Lists, and hope he will join us.
      Eventually arrived in Bangkok around midday - just 24 hours late.
      That evening, finding K. Amara, K. Betty and K. Sukin felt
      miraculously wonderful - hugs and smiles all round - mine the most
      fervent! 39 hours without sleep, and I still appeared to be a sane
      human being (apart from tipping a waiter in Bangkok $US30 - but he
      was deliriously happy!) :) :) Is a mistake counted as Dana? :)

      In Colombo, we were 'permanently' allocated to one of five coaches.
      Our Thai tour leader (name 'sounds like' Cook-ai) and our Sri Lanka
      tour leader (name 'sounds like NissanCar [seriously!]) were patient
      and efficient ), and a bit shell shocked with over 150 delightfully
      individualistic Thais to deal with. But lots of laughter, no dosa.
      They just wouldn't stay on their allocated buses, would they Amara? -
      And a decision is only a 'preliminary' step - one needs to make and
      remake them in a dozen different ways.. :) :)

      PLACE IMPRESSIONS:
      Others on the tour will have their own favourites and their own
      special reasons for valuing certain places. Two places stood out for
      me - 1. The Aluvihara Temple about 20 miles out of Kandy. Here in
      the 2nd Century B.C., the Tipitaka was first committed to writing by
      about 500 monks over very many months. I'm not usually impressed
      by 'significant sites' but the emotions experienced here are
      indescribable. This place....this place..... the thought of the
      Teachings and those responsible for its preservation and
      dissemination fill me with awe, gratitude, reverence, and moved me
      to tears.
      2. The Sacred Bo Tree at Anuradhapura - the oldest historic tree in
      the world - grown from a branch of the tree under which the Buddha
      gained enlightenment. I managed to collect a few leaves from the
      ground to press as keepsakes.

      COMPLAINTS:
      The Sri Lankan Tour leader frequently spoke about 'The International
      Women's Problem'. He said that the desperate (but beautiful) ladies
      on the bus had a problem that would require the stopping of the bus
      in ten minutes - if they could be patient that long. And, he
      said, "Gentlement - you must just bear with me please" - (big grins
      from the men - did you think we didn't notice Jon, Sukin, Jaran??) I
      would like to propose that, on future trips, once the desperate (but
      beautiful) ladies had alighted, the doors of the bus should be locked
      with the male passengers inside, until departure .... THEN we would
      see just 'who' was desperate (but beautiful), and 'who' was being
      scapegoated.... :)

      And to THAT staff member of THAT Hotel in Kandy ... 4.30 a.m. is NOT
      the time to knock on the door and want to check the mini-bar in a
      lady's room. Next time you may get a worse reaction than an
      incredulous "You want to do WHAT??" Luckily for you, you beat a hasty
      retreat. (Clearly another reading needed of the Perfection of
      Equanimity ... why is equanimity the last of the Perfections? :))

      IMPRESSIONS OF DHAMMA AND FRIENDS:
      On a few occasions, some of us didn't go on the day trips so that we
      could have Dhamma discussions with K. Sujin. How precious those
      times are ... Much gratitude for K. Sujin's unstinting giving of her
      energy, and time, whenever she felt she could be of help to any of us
      regarding the Teachings.
      And the Dhamma topics - I usually remember what is impacting on me at
      the time, often quite different to, or only a tiny part of how anyone
      else remembers a discussion. Metta, again, came up ... that there is
      no need for a special method, time or place; that metta arises
      conditioned by understanding; 'Who' is developing metta? No self -
      so there are just moments of understanding, seeing, metta etc. but no
      self who is 'experiencing' or 'doing'. Conditions for having metta -
      right understanding of what metta is; understanding at a theoretical
      level more about realities; association with the right friends.
      'Dust rags' were mentioned again. Being a Dust Rag - losing the
      concept of self - indicates and absence of conceit. This was a bit
      difficult for me as I spend part of each day 'empowering' people to
      stand up for themselves, resisting unfair, unkind people and
      circumstances ... I came to see that 'being a dust rag' is
      an 'internal' attitude to what has occurred and it doesn't mean that
      we don't try to change situations and help people. (I hope that's
      right, otherwise I'm in trouble again.)
      There was also an interesting discussion on attachment/bonding to our
      babies and children. Some of us (me) wondered what affect
      biology/hormones/survival of the species has, as opposed to others
      (everyone else) who consider 'bonding' is 'accumulated tendencies'.
      Hmmmm ... If there has to be a unanimous agreement then we have
      a 'hung jury' - if 'majority rules' we have a result
      favouring 'accumulated tendencies' with one dissenting vote. :) :)

      No need for me to ponder or discuss 'no control' anymore - I'm in the
      middle of it - can't escape it, can't 'control' it. :)

      Meeting Ranil and Sumetra, Sumane, Nihal, and Suren and Cinta,
      was a joy. Ranil and Sumane - lovely to see your keen enthusiasm,
      knowledge and interest in the Dhamma, please talk to us more often on
      dsg, and, who can tell what the future holds, we may all get to meet
      again face to face. :)

      Good to see Ell has posted. Nina, Sarah, Betty, Lucy, Azita, Joyce
      and I need more feminine support here. Now that we know about
      this 'International Women's Problem', we may have to roster someone
      on while the rest of us leave the List when struck by desperation for
      short periods. :)

      ANIMAL IMPRESSIONS:
      NissanCar (who is a well known presenter on Discovery Channel about
      animals and birds) was giving us a talk about elephants and what to
      say to one who was at the 'kicking up dirt' stage of an inevitable
      attack - (sorry, I've forgotten just what to say (and it would only
      have worked if the elephant spoke Sri Lankan anyway), but don't run -
      elephants are faster than humans and can swim further.).
      As he was talking, a mahout and an elephant passed the other way in
      the stream of traffic. This elephant - flapping his pink ears, trunk
      held high, eyes bright and happy, tail up, swaggering and sashaying,
      all body parts wiggling like an articulated heavy vehicle. NissanCar
      said he was an 'exuberant' young male - isn't that a lovely word? -
      exuberant? - means joyously unrestrained - and, indeed, he was.

      - a very long, very fat slithering snake making it safely across the
      road. (didn't hear a gulping sound though, Sarah) :).

      - dogs and more dogs, looking surprisingly like the Bangkok dogs -
      how far can a dog swim? :)

      - Then, there was the time I was standing on the verandah outside my
      room in Dambulla, contemplating jungle and mountain views, listening
      to unfamiliar morning bird sounds. Suddenly a large monkey scrambled
      up the corner post within arm's reach (his and mine!). The monkey
      paused and checked me over (for food? for jewellery?) and was
      completely unfazed. (not so, the human). - I've found a weakness in
      those Women's Safety lectures I went to, where the Police Constable
      said "If in danger, scream loudly" - Screams don't happen with frozen
      vocal chords - (He was a VERY large monkey) - and monkeys are
      completely and utterly unimpressed by squeaks. I have learned since
      (from my dear friends) that monkeys are 'probably' vegetarian,
      and 'probably' don't have rabies.
      Sukin, tell me again about re-birth and just who could have been my
      grandmother? :) :) Only teasing - I know it wasn't the monkey - it
      was the elephant, right? :)

      metta,
      Christine
    • Deanna Shakti Johnson
      Dear Christine and others, Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring and
      Message 2 of 8 , Jun 17, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        Dear Christine and others,
        Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring and hope that I maybe able to join a future trip.
        Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in Bangkok?
        As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer questions? Is the group in English?
        I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
        With metta,
        Shakti
        christine_forsyth <cforsyth@...> wrote: Dear All,

        GETTING THERE:
        Getting to the starting point is often a lot of fun when meeting
        friends in Bangkok. This time travelling from Brisbane to Bangkok
        via Singapore, I had an inquisitive Singaporean two year old sitting
        on her Indonesian Nanny's lap next to me. Smiling eyes, playing the
        game of "I'll hand you everything in the seat pocket, and you hand it
        back to me." Eventually she went to sleep and I got a chance to read
        Nina's "Perfections leading to Enlightenment" - 52 pages on my
        printer. Thank you Nina, I found it absorbing, it stimulated
        reflection, and I look forward to learning more on the second
        reading shortly. I feel the phrase "whatever comes, let it come" may
        have been an omen.....
        Landing in Singapore at 6.30 p.m. was a lesson about 'no control'. A
        series of announcements through the evening changed the departure
        gate three times, from one end of the terminal to the other ,
        and delayed departure until "who knows when" the next day. The
        Acapella singers, the live game shows and the on-line gambling were a
        little at odds with the alert armed soldiers in patrol formation
        carefully moving through the crowds.
        At 4.00 a.m. I checked into the Transit Hotel and rebooked my ticket
        on another airline who could guarantee I would get to Bangkok in time
        to join the tour to Sri Lanka. Changi Airport is an interesting
        place to be marooned (though I did feel I might have wandered into
        the song lyrics of "Hotel California") ....
        "Last thing I remember, I was running for the door
        I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
        'Relax' said the nightman, We are programed to receive.
        You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave"

        What I thought of as the 'Singapore Debacle' was viewed in a
        different way by the man sitting next to me on the Singapore/Bangkok
        sector. He noticed I was reading Nanamoli Thera's "The Practice of
        Loving Kindness" and introduced himself. He is a practising Buddhist
        and saw the overnight delay as fortuitous, something to be delighted
        and joyful about, as it caused us to meet. (Hard to remember the
        meaning of fortuitious after 28 hours without sleep.). We had a
        lovely two hours of Dhamma discussion and I told him all about the
        Yahoo Lists, and hope he will join us.
        Eventually arrived in Bangkok around midday - just 24 hours late.
        That evening, finding K. Amara, K. Betty and K. Sukin felt
        miraculously wonderful - hugs and smiles all round - mine the most
        fervent! 39 hours without sleep, and I still appeared to be a sane
        human being (apart from tipping a waiter in Bangkok $US30 - but he
        was deliriously happy!) :) :) Is a mistake counted as Dana? :)

        In Colombo, we were 'permanently' allocated to one of five coaches.
        Our Thai tour leader (name 'sounds like' Cook-ai) and our Sri Lanka
        tour leader (name 'sounds like NissanCar [seriously!]) were patient
        and efficient ), and a bit shell shocked with over 150 delightfully
        individualistic Thais to deal with. But lots of laughter, no dosa.
        They just wouldn't stay on their allocated buses, would they Amara? -
        And a decision is only a 'preliminary' step - one needs to make and
        remake them in a dozen different ways.. :) :)

        PLACE IMPRESSIONS:
        Others on the tour will have their own favourites and their own
        special reasons for valuing certain places. Two places stood out for
        me - 1. The Aluvihara Temple about 20 miles out of Kandy. Here in
        the 2nd Century B.C., the Tipitaka was first committed to writing by
        about 500 monks over very many months. I'm not usually impressed
        by 'significant sites' but the emotions experienced here are
        indescribable. This place....this place..... the thought of the
        Teachings and those responsible for its preservation and
        dissemination fill me with awe, gratitude, reverence, and moved me
        to tears.
        2. The Sacred Bo Tree at Anuradhapura - the oldest historic tree in
        the world - grown from a branch of the tree under which the Buddha
        gained enlightenment. I managed to collect a few leaves from the
        ground to press as keepsakes.

        COMPLAINTS:
        The Sri Lankan Tour leader frequently spoke about 'The International
        Women's Problem'. He said that the desperate (but beautiful) ladies
        on the bus had a problem that would require the stopping of the bus
        in ten minutes - if they could be patient that long. And, he
        said, "Gentlement - you must just bear with me please" - (big grins
        from the men - did you think we didn't notice Jon, Sukin, Jaran??) I
        would like to propose that, on future trips, once the desperate (but
        beautiful) ladies had alighted, the doors of the bus should be locked
        with the male passengers inside, until departure .... THEN we would
        see just 'who' was desperate (but beautiful), and 'who' was being
        scapegoated.... :)

        And to THAT staff member of THAT Hotel in Kandy ... 4.30 a.m. is NOT
        the time to knock on the door and want to check the mini-bar in a
        lady's room. Next time you may get a worse reaction than an
        incredulous "You want to do WHAT??" Luckily for you, you beat a hasty
        retreat. (Clearly another reading needed of the Perfection of
        Equanimity ... why is equanimity the last of the Perfections? :))

        IMPRESSIONS OF DHAMMA AND FRIENDS:
        On a few occasions, some of us didn't go on the day trips so that we
        could have Dhamma discussions with K. Sujin. How precious those
        times are ... Much gratitude for K. Sujin's unstinting giving of her
        energy, and time, whenever she felt she could be of help to any of us
        regarding the Teachings.
        And the Dhamma topics - I usually remember what is impacting on me at
        the time, often quite different to, or only a tiny part of how anyone
        else remembers a discussion. Metta, again, came up ... that there is
        no need for a special method, time or place; that metta arises
        conditioned by understanding; 'Who' is developing metta? No self -
        so there are just moments of understanding, seeing, metta etc. but no
        self who is 'experiencing' or 'doing'. Conditions for having metta -
        right understanding of what metta is; understanding at a theoretical
        level more about realities; association with the right friends.
        'Dust rags' were mentioned again. Being a Dust Rag - losing the
        concept of self - indicates and absence of conceit. This was a bit
        difficult for me as I spend part of each day 'empowering' people to
        stand up for themselves, resisting unfair, unkind people and
        circumstances ... I came to see that 'being a dust rag' is
        an 'internal' attitude to what has occurred and it doesn't mean that
        we don't try to change situations and help people. (I hope that's
        right, otherwise I'm in trouble again.)
        There was also an interesting discussion on attachment/bonding to our
        babies and children. Some of us (me) wondered what affect
        biology/hormones/survival of the species has, as opposed to others
        (everyone else) who consider 'bonding' is 'accumulated tendencies'.
        Hmmmm ... If there has to be a unanimous agreement then we have
        a 'hung jury' - if 'majority rules' we have a result
        favouring 'accumulated tendencies' with one dissenting vote. :) :)

        No need for me to ponder or discuss 'no control' anymore - I'm in the
        middle of it - can't escape it, can't 'control' it. :)

        Meeting Ranil and Sumetra, Sumane, Nihal, and Suren and Cinta,
        was a joy. Ranil and Sumane - lovely to see your keen enthusiasm,
        knowledge and interest in the Dhamma, please talk to us more often on
        dsg, and, who can tell what the future holds, we may all get to meet
        again face to face. :)

        Good to see Ell has posted. Nina, Sarah, Betty, Lucy, Azita, Joyce
        and I need more feminine support here. Now that we know about
        this 'International Women's Problem', we may have to roster someone
        on while the rest of us leave the List when struck by desperation for
        short periods. :)

        ANIMAL IMPRESSIONS:
        NissanCar (who is a well known presenter on Discovery Channel about
        animals and birds) was giving us a talk about elephants and what to
        say to one who was at the 'kicking up dirt' stage of an inevitable
        attack - (sorry, I've forgotten just what to say (and it would only
        have worked if the elephant spoke Sri Lankan anyway), but don't run -
        elephants are faster than humans and can swim further.).
        As he was talking, a mahout and an elephant passed the other way in
        the stream of traffic. This elephant - flapping his pink ears, trunk
        held high, eyes bright and happy, tail up, swaggering and sashaying,
        all body parts wiggling like an articulated heavy vehicle. NissanCar
        said he was an 'exuberant' young male - isn't that a lovely word? -
        exuberant? - means joyously unrestrained - and, indeed, he was.

        - a very long, very fat slithering snake making it safely across the
        road. (didn't hear a gulping sound though, Sarah) :).

        - dogs and more dogs, looking surprisingly like the Bangkok dogs -
        how far can a dog swim? :)

        - Then, there was the time I was standing on the verandah outside my
        room in Dambulla, contemplating jungle and mountain views, listening
        to unfamiliar morning bird sounds. Suddenly a large monkey scrambled
        up the corner post within arm's reach (his and mine!). The monkey
        paused and checked me over (for food? for jewellery?) and was
        completely unfazed. (not so, the human). - I've found a weakness in
        those Women's Safety lectures I went to, where the Police Constable
        said "If in danger, scream loudly" - Screams don't happen with frozen
        vocal chords - (He was a VERY large monkey) - and monkeys are
        completely and utterly unimpressed by squeaks. I have learned since
        (from my dear friends) that monkeys are 'probably' vegetarian,
        and 'probably' don't have rabies.
        Sukin, tell me again about re-birth and just who could have been my
        grandmother? :) :) Only teasing - I know it wasn't the monkey - it
        was the elephant, right? :)

        metta,
        Christine





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      • Deanna Shakti Johnson
        Dear Christine and others, Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring and
        Message 3 of 8 , Jun 17, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          Dear Christine and others,
          Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring and hope that I maybe able to join a future trip.
          Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in Bangkok?
          As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer questions? Is the group in English?
          I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
          With metta,
          Shakti
          christine_forsyth <cforsyth@...> wrote: Dear All,

          GETTING THERE:
          Getting to the starting point is often a lot of fun when meeting
          friends in Bangkok. This time travelling from Brisbane to Bangkok
          via Singapore, I had an inquisitive Singaporean two year old sitting
          on her Indonesian Nanny's lap next to me. Smiling eyes, playing the
          game of "I'll hand you everything in the seat pocket, and you hand it
          back to me." Eventually she went to sleep and I got a chance to read
          Nina's "Perfections leading to Enlightenment" - 52 pages on my
          printer. Thank you Nina, I found it absorbing, it stimulated
          reflection, and I look forward to learning more on the second
          reading shortly. I feel the phrase "whatever comes, let it come" may
          have been an omen.....
          Landing in Singapore at 6.30 p.m. was a lesson about 'no control'. A
          series of announcements through the evening changed the departure
          gate three times, from one end of the terminal to the other ,
          and delayed departure until "who knows when" the next day. The
          Acapella singers, the live game shows and the on-line gambling were a
          little at odds with the alert armed soldiers in patrol formation
          carefully moving through the crowds.
          At 4.00 a.m. I checked into the Transit Hotel and rebooked my ticket
          on another airline who could guarantee I would get to Bangkok in time
          to join the tour to Sri Lanka. Changi Airport is an interesting
          place to be marooned (though I did feel I might have wandered into
          the song lyrics of "Hotel California") ....
          "Last thing I remember, I was running for the door
          I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
          'Relax' said the nightman, We are programed to receive.
          You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave"

          What I thought of as the 'Singapore Debacle' was viewed in a
          different way by the man sitting next to me on the Singapore/Bangkok
          sector. He noticed I was reading Nanamoli Thera's "The Practice of
          Loving Kindness" and introduced himself. He is a practising Buddhist
          and saw the overnight delay as fortuitous, something to be delighted
          and joyful about, as it caused us to meet. (Hard to remember the
          meaning of fortuitious after 28 hours without sleep.). We had a
          lovely two hours of Dhamma discussion and I told him all about the
          Yahoo Lists, and hope he will join us.
          Eventually arrived in Bangkok around midday - just 24 hours late.
          That evening, finding K. Amara, K. Betty and K. Sukin felt
          miraculously wonderful - hugs and smiles all round - mine the most
          fervent! 39 hours without sleep, and I still appeared to be a sane
          human being (apart from tipping a waiter in Bangkok $US30 - but he
          was deliriously happy!) :) :) Is a mistake counted as Dana? :)

          In Colombo, we were 'permanently' allocated to one of five coaches.
          Our Thai tour leader (name 'sounds like' Cook-ai) and our Sri Lanka
          tour leader (name 'sounds like NissanCar [seriously!]) were patient
          and efficient ), and a bit shell shocked with over 150 delightfully
          individualistic Thais to deal with. But lots of laughter, no dosa.
          They just wouldn't stay on their allocated buses, would they Amara? -
          And a decision is only a 'preliminary' step - one needs to make and
          remake them in a dozen different ways.. :) :)

          PLACE IMPRESSIONS:
          Others on the tour will have their own favourites and their own
          special reasons for valuing certain places. Two places stood out for
          me - 1. The Aluvihara Temple about 20 miles out of Kandy. Here in
          the 2nd Century B.C., the Tipitaka was first committed to writing by
          about 500 monks over very many months. I'm not usually impressed
          by 'significant sites' but the emotions experienced here are
          indescribable. This place....this place..... the thought of the
          Teachings and those responsible for its preservation and
          dissemination fill me with awe, gratitude, reverence, and moved me
          to tears.
          2. The Sacred Bo Tree at Anuradhapura - the oldest historic tree in
          the world - grown from a branch of the tree under which the Buddha
          gained enlightenment. I managed to collect a few leaves from the
          ground to press as keepsakes.

          COMPLAINTS:
          The Sri Lankan Tour leader frequently spoke about 'The International
          Women's Problem'. He said that the desperate (but beautiful) ladies
          on the bus had a problem that would require the stopping of the bus
          in ten minutes - if they could be patient that long. And, he
          said, "Gentlement - you must just bear with me please" - (big grins
          from the men - did you think we didn't notice Jon, Sukin, Jaran??) I
          would like to propose that, on future trips, once the desperate (but
          beautiful) ladies had alighted, the doors of the bus should be locked
          with the male passengers inside, until departure .... THEN we would
          see just 'who' was desperate (but beautiful), and 'who' was being
          scapegoated.... :)

          And to THAT staff member of THAT Hotel in Kandy ... 4.30 a.m. is NOT
          the time to knock on the door and want to check the mini-bar in a
          lady's room. Next time you may get a worse reaction than an
          incredulous "You want to do WHAT??" Luckily for you, you beat a hasty
          retreat. (Clearly another reading needed of the Perfection of
          Equanimity ... why is equanimity the last of the Perfections? :))

          IMPRESSIONS OF DHAMMA AND FRIENDS:
          On a few occasions, some of us didn't go on the day trips so that we
          could have Dhamma discussions with K. Sujin. How precious those
          times are ... Much gratitude for K. Sujin's unstinting giving of her
          energy, and time, whenever she felt she could be of help to any of us
          regarding the Teachings.
          And the Dhamma topics - I usually remember what is impacting on me at
          the time, often quite different to, or only a tiny part of how anyone
          else remembers a discussion. Metta, again, came up ... that there is
          no need for a special method, time or place; that metta arises
          conditioned by understanding; 'Who' is developing metta? No self -
          so there are just moments of understanding, seeing, metta etc. but no
          self who is 'experiencing' or 'doing'. Conditions for having metta -
          right understanding of what metta is; understanding at a theoretical
          level more about realities; association with the right friends.
          'Dust rags' were mentioned again. Being a Dust Rag - losing the
          concept of self - indicates and absence of conceit. This was a bit
          difficult for me as I spend part of each day 'empowering' people to
          stand up for themselves, resisting unfair, unkind people and
          circumstances ... I came to see that 'being a dust rag' is
          an 'internal' attitude to what has occurred and it doesn't mean that
          we don't try to change situations and help people. (I hope that's
          right, otherwise I'm in trouble again.)
          There was also an interesting discussion on attachment/bonding to our
          babies and children. Some of us (me) wondered what affect
          biology/hormones/survival of the species has, as opposed to others
          (everyone else) who consider 'bonding' is 'accumulated tendencies'.
          Hmmmm ... If there has to be a unanimous agreement then we have
          a 'hung jury' - if 'majority rules' we have a result
          favouring 'accumulated tendencies' with one dissenting vote. :) :)

          No need for me to ponder or discuss 'no control' anymore - I'm in the
          middle of it - can't escape it, can't 'control' it. :)

          Meeting Ranil and Sumetra, Sumane, Nihal, and Suren and Cinta,
          was a joy. Ranil and Sumane - lovely to see your keen enthusiasm,
          knowledge and interest in the Dhamma, please talk to us more often on
          dsg, and, who can tell what the future holds, we may all get to meet
          again face to face. :)

          Good to see Ell has posted. Nina, Sarah, Betty, Lucy, Azita, Joyce
          and I need more feminine support here. Now that we know about
          this 'International Women's Problem', we may have to roster someone
          on while the rest of us leave the List when struck by desperation for
          short periods. :)

          ANIMAL IMPRESSIONS:
          NissanCar (who is a well known presenter on Discovery Channel about
          animals and birds) was giving us a talk about elephants and what to
          say to one who was at the 'kicking up dirt' stage of an inevitable
          attack - (sorry, I've forgotten just what to say (and it would only
          have worked if the elephant spoke Sri Lankan anyway), but don't run -
          elephants are faster than humans and can swim further.).
          As he was talking, a mahout and an elephant passed the other way in
          the stream of traffic. This elephant - flapping his pink ears, trunk
          held high, eyes bright and happy, tail up, swaggering and sashaying,
          all body parts wiggling like an articulated heavy vehicle. NissanCar
          said he was an 'exuberant' young male - isn't that a lovely word? -
          exuberant? - means joyously unrestrained - and, indeed, he was.

          - a very long, very fat slithering snake making it safely across the
          road. (didn't hear a gulping sound though, Sarah) :).

          - dogs and more dogs, looking surprisingly like the Bangkok dogs -
          how far can a dog swim? :)

          - Then, there was the time I was standing on the verandah outside my
          room in Dambulla, contemplating jungle and mountain views, listening
          to unfamiliar morning bird sounds. Suddenly a large monkey scrambled
          up the corner post within arm's reach (his and mine!). The monkey
          paused and checked me over (for food? for jewellery?) and was
          completely unfazed. (not so, the human). - I've found a weakness in
          those Women's Safety lectures I went to, where the Police Constable
          said "If in danger, scream loudly" - Screams don't happen with frozen
          vocal chords - (He was a VERY large monkey) - and monkeys are
          completely and utterly unimpressed by squeaks. I have learned since
          (from my dear friends) that monkeys are 'probably' vegetarian,
          and 'probably' don't have rabies.
          Sukin, tell me again about re-birth and just who could have been my
          grandmother? :) :) Only teasing - I know it wasn't the monkey - it
          was the elephant, right? :)

          metta,
          Christine





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        • christine_forsyth
          Hello Shakti, Thank you for your kind words. (I ve taken the liberty of adding you to the Desperation roster :)) Yes, I m home now - only just over a week
          Message 4 of 8 , Jun 17, 2002
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            Hello Shakti,

            Thank you for your kind words. (I've taken the liberty of adding you
            to the 'Desperation' roster :)) Yes, I'm home now - only just over a
            week since I left, feels much longer. I didn't have time for
            Discussions as I was only in BKK one day on each end of the Sri Lanka
            trip. It would be great if you could join any further trips, or just
            be in BKK at the same time as some of the rest of us - some of us are
            trying to get there a few times a year, and like to plan for the
            times when others can get there too. Not sure exactly when others
            are going next, but I'm hoping to be there towards the end of the
            year - somewhere in the late November to mid-January time frame for a
            few days to a week and perhaps Azita, Sarah & Jon, RobK - takes lots
            of juggling of schedules, and even then, some of us keep missing the
            others (e.g. RobK :))
            If you will be in BKK in September, Sukin, Betty, Ell and others
            from this list who live there, will be certain to want to meet you.
            (Depending on little things like 'conditions' and 'no control' :))

            Not sure where you live - but a few Australian and Hong Kong members
            are meeting at Noosa in Queensland on the last weekend in July - for
            once, I only have to drive there :) You, and anyone else, would be
            very welcome if in this part of the world at that time.

            You can find much information about the Foundation in Bangkok from
            http://www.buddhadhamma.com/ which is, I think, their official
            website. Click on the english words at the top - BuddhaDhamma.com -
            it takes a little while to download, so be patient. The larger
            golden leaves on the right hand side are the up and down arrows.
            "First Steps' contains the 'how' and 'why' of studying Dhamma.
            Under 'Contents' click on 'History' for a photo of Ajahn Sujin and
            information about her.
            'Study Groups' gives times, contacts, and location for English
            Discussion in Bangkok (which K. Sujin usually tries to attend) and
            San Francisco Bay Area.

            You may also find the following article useful, if, like I was and
            still am, you are not used to 'this mob' when they get down to
            discussing the essentials of the Buddha Dhamma without the need for
            conventional terminology.
            http://www.abhidhamma.org/Introduction.html
            Check the Contents section of this site as well for excellent Dhamma
            teachings.
            http://www.abhidhamma.org/contents.htm
            As well, another site worth looking at is
            http://www.dhammastudy.com/

            with metta,
            Christine


            --- In dhammastudygroup@y..., Deanna Shakti Johnson
            <deannajohnsonusa@y...> wrote:
            >
            > Dear Christine and others,
            > Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your experiences
            while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring and hope
            that I maybe able to join a future trip.
            > Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in
            Bangkok?
            > As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the
            inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How
            often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer
            questions? Is the group in English?
            > I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to
            connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
            > With metta,
            > Shakti
            > christine_forsyth <cforsyth@v...> wrote: Dear All,
            >
            > GETTING THERE:
            > Getting to the starting point is often a lot of fun when meeting
            > friends in Bangkok. This time travelling from Brisbane to Bangkok
            > via Singapore, I had an inquisitive Singaporean two year old
            sitting
            > on her Indonesian Nanny's lap next to me. Smiling eyes, playing the
            > game of "I'll hand you everything in the seat pocket, and you hand
            it
            > back to me." Eventually she went to sleep and I got a chance to
            read
            > Nina's "Perfections leading to Enlightenment" - 52 pages on my
            > printer. Thank you Nina, I found it absorbing, it stimulated
            > reflection, and I look forward to learning more on the second
            > reading shortly. I feel the phrase "whatever comes, let it come"
            may
            > have been an omen.....
            > Landing in Singapore at 6.30 p.m. was a lesson about 'no control'.
            A
            > series of announcements through the evening changed the departure
            > gate three times, from one end of the terminal to the other ,
            > and delayed departure until "who knows when" the next day. The
            > Acapella singers, the live game shows and the on-line gambling were
            a
            > little at odds with the alert armed soldiers in patrol formation
            > carefully moving through the crowds.
            > At 4.00 a.m. I checked into the Transit Hotel and rebooked my
            ticket
            > on another airline who could guarantee I would get to Bangkok in
            time
            > to join the tour to Sri Lanka. Changi Airport is an interesting
            > place to be marooned (though I did feel I might have wandered into
            > the song lyrics of "Hotel California") ....
            > "Last thing I remember, I was running for the door
            > I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
            > 'Relax' said the nightman, We are programed to receive.
            > You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave"
            >
            > What I thought of as the 'Singapore Debacle' was viewed in a
            > different way by the man sitting next to me on the
            Singapore/Bangkok
            > sector. He noticed I was reading Nanamoli Thera's "The Practice of
            > Loving Kindness" and introduced himself. He is a practising
            Buddhist
            > and saw the overnight delay as fortuitous, something to be
            delighted
            > and joyful about, as it caused us to meet. (Hard to remember the
            > meaning of fortuitious after 28 hours without sleep.). We had a
            > lovely two hours of Dhamma discussion and I told him all about the
            > Yahoo Lists, and hope he will join us.
            > Eventually arrived in Bangkok around midday - just 24 hours late.
            > That evening, finding K. Amara, K. Betty and K. Sukin felt
            > miraculously wonderful - hugs and smiles all round - mine the most
            > fervent! 39 hours without sleep, and I still appeared to be a sane
            > human being (apart from tipping a waiter in Bangkok $US30 - but he
            > was deliriously happy!) :) :) Is a mistake counted as Dana? :)
            >
            > In Colombo, we were 'permanently' allocated to one of five coaches.
            > Our Thai tour leader (name 'sounds like' Cook-ai) and our Sri Lanka
            > tour leader (name 'sounds like NissanCar [seriously!]) were patient
            > and efficient ), and a bit shell shocked with over 150 delightfully
            > individualistic Thais to deal with. But lots of laughter, no dosa.
            > They just wouldn't stay on their allocated buses, would they
            Amara? -
            > And a decision is only a 'preliminary' step - one needs to make and
            > remake them in a dozen different ways.. :) :)
            >
            > PLACE IMPRESSIONS:
            > Others on the tour will have their own favourites and their own
            > special reasons for valuing certain places. Two places stood out
            for
            > me - 1. The Aluvihara Temple about 20 miles out of Kandy. Here in
            > the 2nd Century B.C., the Tipitaka was first committed to writing
            by
            > about 500 monks over very many months. I'm not usually impressed
            > by 'significant sites' but the emotions experienced here are
            > indescribable. This place....this place..... the thought of the
            > Teachings and those responsible for its preservation and
            > dissemination fill me with awe, gratitude, reverence, and moved me
            > to tears.
            > 2. The Sacred Bo Tree at Anuradhapura - the oldest historic tree in
            > the world - grown from a branch of the tree under which the Buddha
            > gained enlightenment. I managed to collect a few leaves from the
            > ground to press as keepsakes.
            >
            > COMPLAINTS:
            > The Sri Lankan Tour leader frequently spoke about 'The
            International
            > Women's Problem'. He said that the desperate (but beautiful) ladies
            > on the bus had a problem that would require the stopping of the bus
            > in ten minutes - if they could be patient that long. And, he
            > said, "Gentlement - you must just bear with me please" - (big grins
            > from the men - did you think we didn't notice Jon, Sukin, Jaran??)
            I
            > would like to propose that, on future trips, once the desperate
            (but
            > beautiful) ladies had alighted, the doors of the bus should be
            locked
            > with the male passengers inside, until departure .... THEN we would
            > see just 'who' was desperate (but beautiful), and 'who' was being
            > scapegoated.... :)
            >
            > And to THAT staff member of THAT Hotel in Kandy ... 4.30 a.m. is
            NOT
            > the time to knock on the door and want to check the mini-bar in a
            > lady's room. Next time you may get a worse reaction than an
            > incredulous "You want to do WHAT??" Luckily for you, you beat a
            hasty
            > retreat. (Clearly another reading needed of the Perfection of
            > Equanimity ... why is equanimity the last of the Perfections? :))
            >
            > IMPRESSIONS OF DHAMMA AND FRIENDS:
            > On a few occasions, some of us didn't go on the day trips so that
            we
            > could have Dhamma discussions with K. Sujin. How precious those
            > times are ... Much gratitude for K. Sujin's unstinting giving of
            her
            > energy, and time, whenever she felt she could be of help to any of
            us
            > regarding the Teachings.
            > And the Dhamma topics - I usually remember what is impacting on me
            at
            > the time, often quite different to, or only a tiny part of how
            anyone
            > else remembers a discussion. Metta, again, came up ... that there
            is
            > no need for a special method, time or place; that metta arises
            > conditioned by understanding; 'Who' is developing metta? No self -
            > so there are just moments of understanding, seeing, metta etc. but
            no
            > self who is 'experiencing' or 'doing'. Conditions for having metta -

            > right understanding of what metta is; understanding at a
            theoretical
            > level more about realities; association with the right friends.
            > 'Dust rags' were mentioned again. Being a Dust Rag - losing the
            > concept of self - indicates and absence of conceit. This was a bit
            > difficult for me as I spend part of each day 'empowering' people to
            > stand up for themselves, resisting unfair, unkind people and
            > circumstances ... I came to see that 'being a dust rag' is
            > an 'internal' attitude to what has occurred and it doesn't mean
            that
            > we don't try to change situations and help people. (I hope that's
            > right, otherwise I'm in trouble again.)
            > There was also an interesting discussion on attachment/bonding to
            our
            > babies and children. Some of us (me) wondered what affect
            > biology/hormones/survival of the species has, as opposed to others
            > (everyone else) who consider 'bonding' is 'accumulated tendencies'.
            > Hmmmm ... If there has to be a unanimous agreement then we have
            > a 'hung jury' - if 'majority rules' we have a result
            > favouring 'accumulated tendencies' with one dissenting vote. :) :)
            >
            > No need for me to ponder or discuss 'no control' anymore - I'm in
            the
            > middle of it - can't escape it, can't 'control' it. :)
            >
            > Meeting Ranil and Sumetra, Sumane, Nihal, and Suren and Cinta,
            > was a joy. Ranil and Sumane - lovely to see your keen enthusiasm,
            > knowledge and interest in the Dhamma, please talk to us more often
            on
            > dsg, and, who can tell what the future holds, we may all get to
            meet
            > again face to face. :)
            >
            > Good to see Ell has posted. Nina, Sarah, Betty, Lucy, Azita, Joyce
            > and I need more feminine support here. Now that we know about
            > this 'International Women's Problem', we may have to roster someone
            > on while the rest of us leave the List when struck by desperation
            for
            > short periods. :)
            >
            > ANIMAL IMPRESSIONS:
            > NissanCar (who is a well known presenter on Discovery Channel about
            > animals and birds) was giving us a talk about elephants and what to
            > say to one who was at the 'kicking up dirt' stage of an inevitable
            > attack - (sorry, I've forgotten just what to say (and it would only
            > have worked if the elephant spoke Sri Lankan anyway), but don't
            run -
            > elephants are faster than humans and can swim further.).
            > As he was talking, a mahout and an elephant passed the other way in
            > the stream of traffic. This elephant - flapping his pink ears,
            trunk
            > held high, eyes bright and happy, tail up, swaggering and
            sashaying,
            > all body parts wiggling like an articulated heavy vehicle.
            NissanCar
            > said he was an 'exuberant' young male - isn't that a lovely word? -
            > exuberant? - means joyously unrestrained - and, indeed, he was.
            >
            > - a very long, very fat slithering snake making it safely across
            the
            > road. (didn't hear a gulping sound though, Sarah) :).
            >
            > - dogs and more dogs, looking surprisingly like the Bangkok dogs -
            > how far can a dog swim? :)
            >
            > - Then, there was the time I was standing on the verandah outside
            my
            > room in Dambulla, contemplating jungle and mountain views,
            listening
            > to unfamiliar morning bird sounds. Suddenly a large monkey
            scrambled
            > up the corner post within arm's reach (his and mine!). The monkey
            > paused and checked me over (for food? for jewellery?) and was
            > completely unfazed. (not so, the human). - I've found a weakness in
            > those Women's Safety lectures I went to, where the Police Constable
            > said "If in danger, scream loudly" - Screams don't happen with
            frozen
            > vocal chords - (He was a VERY large monkey) - and monkeys are
            > completely and utterly unimpressed by squeaks. I have learned since
            > (from my dear friends) that monkeys are 'probably' vegetarian,
            > and 'probably' don't have rabies.
            > Sukin, tell me again about re-birth and just who could have been my
            > grandmother? :) :) Only teasing - I know it wasn't the monkey - it
            > was the elephant, right? :)
            >
            > metta,
            > Christine
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
            http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > ---------------------------------
            > Do You Yahoo!?
            > Sign-up for Video Highlights of 2002 FIFA World Cup
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • robertkirkpatrick.rm
            -- Dear Deanna, If you are planning a trip I would love to meet you. I expect to arrive in bangkok on August 15 till 20 and then return for 3 months from mid
            Message 5 of 8 , Jun 20, 2002
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              --
              Dear Deanna,
              If you are planning a trip I would love to meet you. I expect
              to arrive in bangkok on
              August 15 till 20 and then return for 3 months from
              mid september - will be
              meeting nina van gorkom there in late november to early december.
              Sujin speaks excellent English and can speak to all levels of
              understanding. If she senses someone really wants to know she will
              give them every opportunity to question - the more the better.
              kind regards
              robert

              In dhammastudygroup@y..., Deanna Shakti Johnson
              <deannajohnsonusa@y...> wrote:
              >
              > Dear Christine and others,
              > Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your
              experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring
              and hope that I maybe able to join a future trip.
              > Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in
              Bangkok?
              > As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the
              inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How
              often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer
              questions? Is the group in English?
              > I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to
              connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
              > With metta,
              > Shakti
              >
            • upasaka@aol.com
              Hi, Christine - Thank you for your *wonderful* description. You painted a superb word picture! BTW, now that we know The International Women s Problem , we
              Message 6 of 8 , Jun 20, 2002
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                Hi, Christine -

                Thank you for your *wonderful* description. You painted a superb word
                picture!
                BTW, now that we know 'The International Women's Problem', we also
                have seen confirmed 'The International Men's Problem' ( of sexism. ;-)

                With metta,
                Howard


                /Thus is how ye shall see all this fleeting world: A star at dawn, a bubble
                in a stream, a flash of lightning in a summer cloud, a flickering lamp, a
                phantom, and a dream./ (From the Diamond Sutra)




                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Deanna Shakti Johnson
                Dear Robert, Yes, I am planning a trip to Bangkok and Nepal soon. I am not sure of exact dates yet but am anticipating sometime in August. I am considering a
                Message 7 of 8 , Jun 22, 2002
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                  Dear Robert,
                  Yes, I am planning a trip to Bangkok and Nepal soon. I am not sure of exact dates yet but am anticipating sometime in August. I am considering a trip to Mt. Kailash in Tibet and that maybe late August to early Sept. Has anyone from the group been to Mt. Kailash?
                  I would enjoy meeting with you while in Bangkok. It sounds like you know others in Bangkok from the study group and perhaps you can introduce me. I am happy to hear that Sujin speaks english and look forward to some discussions with her.
                  Thank you for all of your very interesting and informative posts. I appreciate hearing what you have to share. I am learning alot and my understanding is deepening.
                  With gratitude,
                  Shakti
                  "robertkirkpatrick.rm" <robertkirkpatrick@...> wrote: --
                  Dear Deanna,
                  If you are planning a trip I would love to meet you. I expect
                  to arrive in bangkok on
                  August 15 till 20 and then return for 3 months from
                  mid september - will be
                  meeting nina van gorkom there in late november to early december.
                  Sujin speaks excellent English and can speak to all levels of
                  understanding. If she senses someone really wants to know she will
                  give them every opportunity to question - the more the better.
                  kind regards
                  robert

                  In dhammastudygroup@y..., Deanna Shakti Johnson
                  wrote:
                  >
                  > Dear Christine and others,
                  > Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your
                  experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and inspiring
                  and hope that I maybe able to join a future trip.
                  > Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in
                  Bangkok?
                  > As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the
                  inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How
                  often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer
                  questions? Is the group in English?
                  > I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to
                  connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
                  > With metta,
                  > Shakti
                  >




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                  ---------------------------------
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                  Sign-up for Video Highlights of 2002 FIFA World Cup

                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • robertkirkpatrick.rm
                  ... Dear Deanna, It would be my great honour to introuce you to Sujin and the English speakers of DSSF (actually they are pretty laid back so no need for
                  Message 8 of 8 , Jun 22, 2002
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                    ---
                    Dear Deanna,
                    It would be my great honour to introuce you to Sujin and the English
                    speakers of DSSF (actually they are pretty laid back so no need for
                    formalities). I made it to Nepal once but Tibet would be wonderful
                    to visit, I don't know if I could make it through the redtape to get
                    a visa though. Hope we can meet in bangkok at least.
                    kind regards
                    robert

                    In dhammastudygroup@y..., Deanna Shakti Johnson
                    <deannajohnsonusa@y...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Dear Robert,
                    > Yes, I am planning a trip to Bangkok and Nepal soon. I am not
                    sure of exact dates yet but am anticipating sometime in August. I am
                    considering a trip to Mt. Kailash in Tibet and that maybe late
                    August to early Sept. Has anyone from the group been to Mt. Kailash?
                    > I would enjoy meeting with you while in Bangkok. It sounds like
                    you know others in Bangkok from the study group and perhaps you can
                    introduce me. I am happy to hear that Sujin speaks english and look
                    forward to some discussions with her.
                    > Thank you for all of your very interesting and informative posts.
                    I appreciate hearing what you have to share. I am learning alot and
                    my understanding is deepening.
                    > With gratitude,
                    > Shakti
                    > "robertkirkpatrick.rm" <robertkirkpatrick@r...> wrote: --
                    > Dear Deanna,
                    > If you are planning a trip I would love to meet you. I expect
                    > to arrive in bangkok on
                    > August 15 till 20 and then return for 3 months from
                    > mid september - will be
                    > meeting nina van gorkom there in late november to early december.
                    > Sujin speaks excellent English and can speak to all levels of
                    > understanding. If she senses someone really wants to know she will
                    > give them every opportunity to question - the more the better.
                    > kind regards
                    > robert
                    >
                    > In dhammastudygroup@y..., Deanna Shakti Johnson
                    > wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Dear Christine and others,
                    > > Thank you for taking so much time to share some of your
                    > experiences while in Sri Lanka. I found it delightful and
                    inspiring
                    > and hope that I maybe able to join a future trip.
                    > > Are you home now? Did you participate in any groups while in
                    > Bangkok?
                    > > As I am new to Dsg I would like to hear more if anyone has the
                    > inclination and time. What is the Bangkok group all about? How
                    > often does it meet? Does Khun Sujin attend usually and answer
                    > questions? Is the group in English?
                    > > I may be in Bangkok again in Sept and would like to be able to
                    > connect with fellow Dhamma students there.
                    > > With metta,
                    > > Shakti
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
                    http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ---------------------------------
                    > Do You Yahoo!?
                    > Sign-up for Video Highlights of 2002 FIFA World Cup
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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