Social Action Etc. Newsletter: Film Festival, 12 Step Group, Symposium sign up, Family Dharma Group

From: Buddhist Faith Fellowship
Sent on: Tuesday, November 3, 2009 6:37 PM
This BFF of Ct/NASBA Newsletter includes:

Middletown Schedule for November 2009
Buddhist Symposium in NYC (info & sign up)
Buddhist Film Festival in Middletown
Volunteer Opportunities @ the Sangha (Family Dharma, Social Action)
Our Mindfulness 12 Step Group
Mansfield Freeman Center?s exhibition
NASBA/BFF of Ct?s Facebook (join us)
Become a Member


Fall Theme
Touching Peace, Discovering Faith

11/08. I Met the Buddha and He Winked At Me. An insightful, fun and spontaneous talk and discussion on how the Buddha touches and transforms our lives, and to explore if people in general are ready to encounter this transformational experience. Sachi relates her often amusing personal experience to initiate the conversation. Presented my Sachi.

11/15. Suicide and Abortion. What is the approach that Buddhist takes to these controversial issues? Is it ever ethical to commit suicide? Is abortion a "sin"? How can women deal with abortion? Explore the realms of applied Buddhist ethics. Excerpt readings from Buddhist Ethics by Damian Keown and Ocean by Kenneth Tanaka. Presented by Daikan.

11/22. The Most Shin of all Holidays. Gratitude is what Shin is all about. This Thanksgiving gathering will explore how waking up to our indebtedness and learning to live a life that makes Thanksgiving an everyday experience. Presented by Senpai.

11/29. The Art of Breathing. We all have a powerful tool for healing and relaxation at our fingertips at all times which is the breath and is integral to Buddhist practice. Learn about the healing and transformative properties of breathing along with some practice of different breathing exercises taken primarily from Kundalini Yoga. Presented by Myo-on.

For BFF of Ct?s 2009-10 schedule & directions click below

Autumn 2009 Field Trips & Activities

11/21. Buddhist Symposium Field Trip. This annual seminar, by the American Buddhist Study Center, is titled Japanese Spirituality and The Demon of WWII: State Shinto and Buddhism.

Buddhism throughout the world is known as the religion of peace and compassion. Japan was introduced to Buddhism over 1,400 years ago and the Japanese people made it their own religion. So how could it be that a country that practices peace enters into the conflicts of World War II? We will explore the conflicts, the rage, and blind passions that World War II caused.

? Rev. Kemmyo Sato, head minister of the Three Wheels Temple in London will speak about D.T. Suzuki and his ultimate stance towards war from a Buddhist perspective.

? Rev. Kodo Umezu, Director of the Center for Buddhist Education in Berkeley will talk on what role the Nishi Hongwanji and other Buddhist temples and sects played during World War II.

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of D.T. Suzuki?s landmark book Zen and Japanese Culture.
A reception will follow the symposium to meet and talk with the speakers
A suggested donation of $20 for ABSC members, $10 for students, and $25 for all others to help cover our costs.

November 21, 2009 (Saturday) from 7:00 to 10:00 pm
Victor Borge Theater
in Scandinavia House
58 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10016

If you are going, just RSVP [address removed] to reserve your seat and then e-mail us to let us know you are going so we can help coordinate car pooling or other transportation like taking the the Metro North train from New Haven.

Also, Senpai cannot attend this event so volunteer(s) field coordinator(s) is/are needed to lead the field trip. Please let us know.

For more information, visit or call [masked]

12/18. Annual Holiday Party. Come and celebrate Bodhi Day, Christmas, Chanukah and the Solstice with food, dance, socializing and Secret Santa. Date is tentative. To be announced.

Buddhist Film Festival

Our Connecticut Valley Buddhist Film Festival kicked off as a great success on October 27th with the movie Departures. Attendance was out the door with people from all quarters. Our next film is How to Cook Your Life and we hope you can attend and support our sangha and Buddhist culture. Please spread the word and bring some friends too.

Tuesday Nov. 24th. How to Cook Your Life - Find Nirvana in the Kitchen, from 7:30- 10:00 p.m. Charismatic Zen master Edward Espe uncovers the guiding principles of Zen Buddhism as they apply to life and the kitchen. It?s a delightful experience that will help you appreciate the everyday life while opening the joy of cooking.

All movies are offered to the larger community free of charge at the Buttonwood Tree Performing Arts and Cultural Center at 605 Main Street, Middletown, Connecticut.

What is the Connecticut Valley Buddhist Film Festival? It is a showcase of cinemagraphic works that explore the Buddhist religious experience or take on Buddhist spiritual themes. Two movies will be shown in the autumn of 2009 and at least two in the winter/spring of 2010 in Middletown, Connecticut.

The Film Festival 2010 and 2010 includes:

Baraka - December

Visitor ? January. This 2009 film did not get nearly enough attention- even though Richard Jenkins received Best Actor nomination for his performance. The theme of film is "just connect". It is a beautiful story of what can happen when lives intersect and people are willing and able to drop their story lines- and "just connect."

Nobody Loves Me - February

Cherry Blossoms ? March. This film is directed by Doris Dorrie, a German Buddhist film maker- who also directed How to Cook Your Life. It takes place in Japan during very special cherry blossom season. It deals with life/death with Buddhist concepts subtly interwoven.

We hope you can join us and explore Buddhist filmmaking.

Volunteer Opportunities 2009-10

The BFF of Ct is looking for volunteers to help us out in effective sangha building. For 2009-10, we are looking to expand participation in our community so as to deepen and share the dharma and fruits of its practice with our families and the local community.

If any of the below projects interest you place reply to this e-mail and let us know. Include your 1) name, 2) phone number, 3) town, 4) interest and 5) skills you can offer. We cannot exist without your help. Thanks so much for your consideration.

1. Social Action Project. We need part-time volunteers to get the BFF of Ct involved in local charities, environmental action, etc (like walk for the cure). See web site

2. Capital Fundraising Project. We are looking to continue fundraising financial resources in order to establish our own center in Middletown. We are looking for people who can help out in events like our Meditation-a-thon 2009 etc. See web site

3. Family Dharma. We are looking for volunteers who have a family (any size) to host and coordinate a once a month ?BFF Family Dharma Sangha?. We will support you all the way with advice and the supplies. We just need one volunteer (with child/children) to have the monthly sangha in their home. There are so many people who would like to come to our Sunday morning gathering but cannot due to children. The BFF of Ct?s Family Dharma Group would consist of parents and their children, and would meet on a Friday evening or Saturday morning or evening for approx. 90 min. to 2 hours. This is a wonderful vehicle to help instill Buddhist values to children and deepen the family?s experience with the teachings. Please let us know. We are open to ideas in order to get started.

So, if you can host our Family Dharma Group or are interested in participating, please e-mail us with the information requested above and the number and age of your children.

4. Outreach Project. Are you interested in sharing the Buddhist teachings and get the word out about the BFF of Ct? We are looking for a few dedicated volunteers to help us put up flyers in the local community in places like supermarkets, libraries, stores, bookstores and universities. If you are interested in getting involved and/or have other ideas in sharing the teachings, please reply to this email.

Please consider helping out. E-mail us if you can. Thanks for your consideration: e-mail [address removed]

Mansfield Freeman Center?s Exhibition

The Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies at Wesleyan University is the Sunday morning location of the Buddhist Fellowship of Connecticut. From September 16 ? December 13 the Center will have in exhibition Buddhist art works. We recommend that you take some time to look at and enjoy the gallery and the seminar room where the BFF of CT gathers.

Our Mindfulness 12 Step Program

Owe are looking to establish possibly the first Buddhist 12 Step Program for addiction in the State of Connecticut. Very soon, in the next week or so, we will meet up to organize the 12 Step Group in Middletown, possibly at the Russell Library and at a nearby home. Some books that we might use are The 12 Step Buddhist by Darren Littlejohn, One Breath at a Time: Buddhism and the 12 Steps by Kevin Griffin, Mindful Recovery by Thomas Bien, and The Zen of Recovery by Mel Ash.

If you are interested in participating and are looking for more information about our Mindfulness 12 Step Group, please e-mail Lori at [address removed]

Join us online

Join BFF of Ct & the North American Shin Buddhist Association (NASBA) Facebook infuse Buddhist spirituality and a healthy dose of enthusiasm, with a modern 21st century vision of Shin. BFF & NASBA Facebooks are social utility vehicles that connect people with friends and others who are interested in our style of Buddhist practice. Share your stories, practice and photos etc. People use Facebook network to keep up with friends, upload an unlimited number of photos, share links and videos, and learn more about the people they meet. Looking for a web community? Come and join BFF & NASBA Facebook.

NASBA Facebook

BFF of Ct Facebook

Become a Supporting Member

Please consider becoming part of our dynamic and inspirational spiritual community that is diligently working to deepen and broaden the practice of Buddhism.
We need your financial support to pay for our operating expenses so that we can keep teaching the Buddha Dharma to Connecticut and help continue the growth the NASBA affiliated community throughout North America. Supporting Membership funds are separate from the Capital Campaign Fund which is earmarked solely for the creation of our new dharma center. However, any ?left over? Membership funds will be transferred to the Capital Fund. Join or rejoin us by becoming a member and collaborate with our uniquely American Shin Buddhist community.
Thank you for renewing your membership. You may do so during a Sunday morning gathering or online on an incremental monthly basis. Thank you for your assistance.

This is a reminder of the six membership categories to choose from:

Basic BFF Supporting Member
BFF Sponsor
BFF Benefactor
White Path Supporter
Patron of the Dharma

To see what it?s all about: visit

The BFF is a tax exempt organization, under section 501 (c) (3) of the IRS code.

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