The Enlightened Society Assembly is a Shambhala mahayana programme that emphasizes the intrinsic goodness of all beings and society, practices that rouse bodhichitta and compassionate openness, and confident activity that engages fully in the world. In particular, living up to its name, this Assembly will focus on how we can create enlightened society on the spot, at home, in our city and nation, and wherever we go. Students will deepen their commitment and intention to manifest basic goodness by taking the Enlightened Society Vow.
Participants in the Enlightened Society Assembly also receive and practice the Shambhala Sadhana written by the Sakyong. This powerful practice helps us contemplate these commitments and deepen them over time. The Enlightened Society Assembly brings this sadhana practice together with our previous Shambhala practices. This Assembly will integrate study, practice, and community, and will expand our inquisitiveness and understanding of the Shambhala Buddhist teachings.
Prerequisites: Students applying to Enlightened Society Assembly should have completed the following before the programme (please note that these are new requirements):
Shambhala Levels I through V
Everyday Life Series: Meditation, Contentment, Joy, Fearlessness and Wisdom
One recommendation from your Meditation Instructor, a Shastri, or your Centre Director
Membership in your local Shambhala meditation centre/group or membership in Shambhala for those not affiliated with a local centre.
The Basic Goodness Series is highly recommended – as this material is directly relevant to Enlightened Society Assembly – but it is not required.
Venue: This Assembly is a residential assembly and will take place at EarthSpirit Centre, just outside of Glastonbury in the UK.
Applying & Registering for ESA
Attending Enlightened Society Assembly is via an application form generated once you have registered.
1. Application - deadline 1 May 2018 Early Bird - deadline 14 February 2018
Your online application should be submitted by 29 May 2018. Applications will be fully reviewed in order to ensure that all applicants are adequately prepared.
2. Registration deadline - 29 May 2018 Early Bird - deadline 28 February 2018
Registering allows you to pay for the programme and apply for your accommodation preference.
Importantly, registering does not guarantee your attendance. Please wait until you receive your acceptance letter before booking flights etc.
Information on how to register will be sent with your Acceptance Letter.
Acharya David Hope has been a member of the London Shambhala Centre since the early days in the front room of his house. He attended seminary in 1983 and was then resident director for Shambhala training in London for many years. In the 1990s he lived and worked at Dechen Choling where he was a co-director from 1995-98. From 1999 - 2004 he served on the Shambhala International board. He currently lives in the UK at Ivy Bank on the south coast with his wife Christina de Block.
Shastri Jane Hope was born in the North of England and studied Fine Art. She belonged to an experimental theatre group called the Exploding Galaxy who performed with Pink Floyd and various other 60’s bands and was employed for 15 years as a Bereavement Counsellor, working with parents whose baby had died. She managed to combine her work life with writing books and has three published books, including “The Beginners Guide to Buddhism”. She was a founder member of the London Shambhala group which began in her home and has taught extensively in UK, North America and Europe. Since 2004 she has been involved in helping to establish Shambhala centres in Ukraine. In 2010, she was appointed by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche as Shastri for Ukraine and London.
Payment and Accommodation
The full cost of the programme is £750, with an Early Bird concession of £680. This fee includes all teachings, materials, programme support costs, 3 meals daily, (special dietary requirements can be provided at an extra cost) and all refreshments but not accommodation.
Accommodation will need to be paid for by no later than 1 May 2018 and is in addition to the cost of the programme. EarthSpirit Centre offer several alternative possible accommodation options and participants will be able to choose their preferred option once their application has been approved. (See EarthSpirit website for a preview of what's on offer.)
We do not want anyone to be excluded from this programme due to finance. So if you would like to support someone who is less able to pay and would like to offer a heart gift you can contribute to our scholarship fund by paying the full price of £750 or more when registering. This will mean that we can potentially offer up to a 25% reduction on the Early Bird fee for someone less able to pay (this will depend on funds available in our scholarship fund and will be limited to a first come first served basis).
If you are someone who is not able to raise the funds but would like to attend the ESA, then you can apply for help or find out how to apply for a concession, by emailing Christine Jeffcutt - [email protected] We ask that you try first to fund raise yourself. You can try Just Giving website but we also have various options including paying in monthly instalments.
Travelling: Nearest station: Bristol Temple Meads. Nearest Airport: Bristol Airport. Lifts/taxis can be arranged from the station and airport if required.
Arrival day: Thursday 5th July 2018 from 4pm - 6pm. Dinner is served at 6.45 pm. Intro talk at 8pm.
End of programme: Friday 13th July 2018 - closing circle and banquet in the evening.
Departure day: Saturday 14th July 2018 by 11am.