Last Thursday I wrote this to a few friends. In response, my Quagan friend Wiccazoid Cat reminds me how neglected this blog is. So pretend this is from April 13. More to come when I've had more chance to digest the weekend's events
I met a woman in the Tibetan Culture House today when I went there to buy two white scarves (one for Patrick, who’s been traveling all over the state to prisons all week and probably won’t have a chance to get one) to present to His Holiness. We had a great conversation while Corby chatted with the precocious 13-year-old poet who’d been talking incessantly with her. The woman, Jo, who was maybe 70 and quite lively, had encountered HH at Spirit Rock in 2000. She also knows Arjia Rinpoche, the lama in Mill Valley on whose asylum papers I worked. There was a photo of him near the register. The store itself is owned by a short, tubby brown Tibetan former monk (Jo’s description) who left and married a much younger woman and now has a little baby. Apparently he knows the Dalai Lama well. He went to see him at some event a few years ago and kind of hid in the back of the crowded room. HH spotted him and walked through the crowd over to him and embraced him. He had thought he wouldn’t been in good graces because he’d left and married, but HH told him that he shouldn’t let all his teachings go to waste and that he should teach. Pretty cool, huh?
Jo gave me some barley seeds with some kind of orange pollen on them (maybe saffron?) that HH had given her back in 2K when she’d met him when he visited Spirit Rock and asked me to give some of them back to him, with this blessing:
“May peace and prosperity, love and compassion just pour into your life.
Don’t envy anyone.
If someone is critical of you, you don’t have to listen to that!
Just remember, you are a precious jewel.”
He said these exact words to her then and she’s passed them on to others since then, including me. So I have the seeds and a scarf. She said he’ll probably take my hand at the very least, but more likely will touch foreheads for a few seconds. She says his presence is amazing -- gentle, calm and shining.
She said she knew HH was here this weekend because her employer, the former monk store owner, told her. He’s always asked to participate when HH visits. He told her he couldn’t say anything about the event. I told her that was true. She asked me how I happened to be invited and I told her that religious leaders were invited and that I was a Pagan. She’s not Buddhist herself, as it happens. The topic of interviews somehow came up, and Corby piped up that I was a religious leader (LOL) and that I was often interviewed. A bit of an exaggeration, I must say. In any case, I said, well, yes, I was featured on the cover of the Pacific Sun the week of Halloween, and she said, “Oh, that was you? I read that.”
She says this little Tibetan store owner is a real “babe magnet,”and that in general HH and all the monks are fascinated by women. That’s cool, sez I. ;-)
P.S. Don’t worry, I’m always gonna be a Pagan.