Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!
2021 – the Year of the Ox in the Chinese zodiac – is like any other year… good for some and not so good for others. Despite all the uncertainties caused by the Covid-19 virus pandemic, many of you are still able to smile. Those who have joined our 3-month Dhamma Course and the Online Retreat in the past year will naturally be more prepared to accept things as they come. Those who have not joined our online Dhamma Course should try to join us from March to May this year, when we launch a new series of online Dhamma talks and guided meditation. In order to make the most out of the course, your commitment is necessary.
New Year celebrations are a time when we practise age-old values such as respecting our elders, seeking forgiveness, sharing what we have with others and making
resolutions. The impact and challenges of Covid-19 will continue through most of this coming year. So we need to remain vigilant and resilient, by cultivating values such as METTA, KARUNA, MUDITA, UPPEKHA. We need to immerse and suffuse ourselves with METTA so that we will be able to reach out to others in times of need.
METTA has the power to attract the blessings of devas and Dhamma protectors, as well as bringing into maturity all our perfections (PARAMI) and accumulated merits so that we will have the necessary strength and support to face the challenges of our times.
At the individual level, METTA or loving-kindness meditation helps to boost our immune system by reducing and overcoming negative emotions such as anger, hatred, grudges, fear, anxiety, suspicion and so on. It also promotes acts of kindness, such as extending a helping hand to the needy, bringing us joy and happiness.
On a wider societal and global level, METTA can play a tremendous role in developing community support through benevolent activities such as creating employment through social enterprise. Communal support is essential to help us all go through the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic and especially to reach out to the poor and needy, as poverty breeds crime and conflict in society, nations and world.
We rejoice with all our dana providers over the year, who despite the lockdown and restricted movement, made a point of delivering groceries and other essential items in support of the spiritual community at Aloka.
For the forthcoming 3-month online Dhamma course and guided meditation from March to May 2021, please take note that registration is necessary. Look out for announcements and more information on this website in the near future.
The Covid 19 pandemic has served as a wake-up call for us to return to righteousness, to lead a more contented and Dhammic way of life. It is in the Dhamma that we will find the highest form of protection:
DHAMMO HAVE RAKKHATI DHAMMACĀRI
The Dhamma protects those who live in accordance with the Dhamma
May the Blessings of the BUDDHA DHAMMA SANGHA be with you all always.