This is an unofficial blog of news and info from Diamond Mountain University and Retreat Center which was founded by Geshe Michael Roach and Lama Christie McNally in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition of the Dalai Lamas.
I was talking to my friends about blogging. I said that I haven't done it in a while because every day seems the same. What can I say about a day that doesn't change. It's like Groundhog Day the movie out here. Each day we work like insane people trying to get these cabins up. At the end of the day we go have a warm meal in the kitchen yurt. New people come, light up our lives, then go. Each week, someone has a break down. Each week, someone has a break through. Sometimes it's an emotional break through, sometimes it's a building break through. For example, We put the final exterior coat of lime plaster on the Lama Dome last week. In one epic work shift we put a beautiful red-orange coat on the whole outside. It would take a super computer to calculate the surface area of the Lama Dome.
The other thing I always say in my blog is "Where are you?" What are you doing that's so important? You're probably sitting on the coast sipping a latte. Your friends and teachers still may not get into retreat because their cabin is not done. And their cabin is not done because YOU are not here. Yeah, you. You latte sipping, coast sitting, downward-dogging, comfortable pants wearing, Operah book club reading, arm chair dharma BUM! You want to bump up your practice? Come live on the DMU campground and work on the cabins for a week. As you lay there in your tent, freezing what's left of your mula bandha off, listening to the very real wild animal directly outside your tent, discovering the true meaning of downward moving wind as the undercooked beans you had at the community meal attack your digestive track, as you lay there with a swollen sciatic lumbar disco-muscle, you will suddenly realize that you are basking in the warm glow of real Lama Devotion. What did you think it looked like, Punk!?
Let me close by saying thank you to all the amazing people that have come out to build, if only for a little while. You are keeping us going and making this insane-courageous-necessary project happen. And to those of you who are able to donate money I thank you as well. You are not the punks to whom I was speaking. I am going back in space and time to a younger me. A me who passed up several opportunities to do something great with my life, even if it was only for a little while. All those little whiles add up to a whole life.
So, there's only one month left before we have to have all the cabins ready to live in. I'm not saying anything, I'm just saying....
I'll say more on that. There's only one guy working everyday on Geshe Michael's little straw bale cabin. Want to be a hero? Here's your chance. You're Lama needs YOU. If he's not your Lama you'll be a hero anyway. Really. You will get the best piece of brownie in the kitchen yurt. People will get up and let you sit down for dinner. The best camping site that's left will be yours. As you fall asleep listening to the coyotes you will be filled with a sense of purpose. But bring a warm sleeping bag, it's getting cold at night.
There are five projects that need more people. Help any of them. It's worth it. I've been trying to talk about this building process and what it means to me. I've been trying to communicate what a special time this is on the land. If you have the view that these people going into reatreat can really help the world then the work you do for them is very powerful. It is a type of energy, this service. Like any energy it can be directed at what ever you want. You do it with your heart. You direct your efforts. This is true of any service you believe in. The building is so physical that you can get your whole body into it which makes it even more powerful, I think. You get all the chakra's humming. If you know me, I don't usually talk in "chakra" terms but that describes it so well. For me it's rare to have all my energy, heart, and mind focused on what I'm doing. Here at DMU, building, it's essential. It rocks you in the best sort of way and the worst. But if you have a good intention and return to that at the end of the day, you just upward spiral. That's all I can say about it. Get your world-view screwed on tight and get your butt out here. We need each other.