December to January …2016 becomes 2017 …Happy New year from Plum Village.
After Christmas, the attention of the Village turns to the New Years preparations, (twice), once on January 31st then in February for the Vietnamese/ Chinese new year.
This one was celebrated in Upper Hamlet. A talk in the main hall, a meal together and into the ‘Be-in’ – a Plum Village performance party, everything from poems and songs to dance and comedy sketches. The monastics are known for their funny performances – this year 3 of them from England did an Eastenders sketch (English London drama) where a teenager tries to explain to his parents he wants to visit Plum Village and by the end of the sketch, after he’s been for a few weeks and come home the parents have decided to retire there and the son is left trying to work out how to use the microwave. Another group of monastics did a rock tribute ‘The Bald Eagles’ to The Eagles and also The Beatles changing the words to be about Plum Village… ‘Come Together, right now (mindfully).’
My love and appreciation to Walther (harmonica), Sergio (bass) and Hernando (Trumpet) – we also performed, playing a song of mine called ‘Human-all’ written last year after a talk here about the human family and loving beyond difference. Later in the week we did a live recording session of it by the fire in the common room (see below…) both times – so good to sing with everyone.
After the show was a new year ceremony, prayers for the new year about looking after ourselves, each other and the earth, a silent sit over midnight – then hugging meditation… stand with a friend or two, take a moment in silence together, smile and hold one another for 3 breaths. Beautiful way to bring in the new year.
New Year also had around 30 teachers visiting for some mindfulness in education workshops. The Schools team led some activities, games, sharings and songs.
Here’s one from the children’s songs that we sang this week-‘All In My Heart, written at a Plum Village Centre in the US. Be together with some others from the recording room on the PV Schools site in the coming months.
In the recording room…
Love to Annica, Julia and Zarah for coming to sing in German for the same children’s set x Shall share their lovely voices another time when we mix those recordings.
Julia, visited again and we also recorded these two songs together- ‘Rock My Soul’ a song by Kathy Lowe (we think) learned from a German Plum Village friend Stephi (more of this lovely story in Julia’s intro to the song o the soundcloud) and Chilean song ‘Gracias A La Vida’
Love and warm wishes for the beginning of the new year