This month’s front cover features the Healing Stupa at the Hümüh Monastery in Westbridge, near Rock Creek, BC. It was constructed from the ground up by students and apprentices of Wisdom Master Maticintin three years ago. It contains the primordial teachings, sacred relics and the love and devotion of her students.
Some of you may remember my good friend and business partner Gerry Parent of the Juicy Carrot restaurant in Penticton. He is now the vice-abbot of the Hümüh Monastery and serves as project co-ordinator for the various building projects. Many volunteers worked long hours carrying buckets of concrete up ladders to create the soft curves of the Stupa. Then they painted the fifty-foot high structure by hand with gold leaf paint. Many statues and plants grace the perimeter and there are over a thousand prayer flags hanging from the steeple and lining the gateway that leads to this temple.
When I visited Gerry last fall, they were busy building a Meditation Hall in the nearby forest. Several men were on a scaffold using winches and ladders to lift the eight beams and create the thirty-foot octagonal-shaped roof. If you wish to see the phases of construction or know about Maticintin’s teaching, please visit their comprehensive website. They also have an ad on the back cover.
Recently I attended a Kirtan, an evening of chanting and meditation in a majestic house high above the Kelowna airport. The workshop/garage was having a wood floor laid down in anticipation of becoming a meditation space. Hosts Dave and Elizabeth are a couple from Toronto that follow the teaching of Hare Krishna and invite everyone to join them. You can reach them at 250-765-4406. It seems to me that more and more folks are feeling the call to meditate and shift the energy of consciousness.
I have also noticed in the last ten years that the interior of BC has attracted people with money and resources who are creating many new sacred spots. These include the Vipassana Meditation Center near Merritt, the Birken Forest Buddhist Monastery near Kamloops, the Johnson’s Landing Retreat Center near Kaslo, Quantum Leaps near Golden, a temple and an ashram near Cranbook, and the Hümüh Monastery. I am sure there are even more such centres of light that I not aware of.
One of the first spiritual teachers in the area was Andy Schneider of Salmon Arm who recently sold his buildings to a group called the Ishayas, an International Society for Ascension. Long-time spiritual teacher Cheryl Foster built a delightful space in her home for weekend intensives and Hajime Naka keeps Tai Chi-ing his way into people’s hearts. Before these three spiritual teachers arrived, there was the Yasodara Ashram. Swami Radha with the help of her Swamis invited everyone to become more aware of their divine presence through chanting and yoga workshops. Whenever I had time off I would attend one of their programs and enjoy the vegetarian cuisine and wonderful energy the land imbued. Sometimes I would hang out at the Tipi Camp just across the way and veg out listening to the waves or to Peter Duryea talk about his environmental concerns for the Earth. I feel ever so grateful to all of them, for they have inspired me to live a more authentic life, one where I feel I am of service to Gaia and closer to my inner guidance.
Starting with the Harmonic Convergence in 1986, I felt a strong need to connect with light-minded souls and got impatient waiting for someone to start things. So I organized the Metaphysical Society in Penticton, created a TV show called the Holistic Networker and took over organizing the Spring Festival of Awareness, all of which helped me to connect with a smorgasbord of people and healing modalities.
I let go of my good-paying job because my angels gave me the feeling it was time to do something different. With their guidance and a voice from the sky, I started this magazine. Now, eighteen years later, I get to see what it takes to create a community with a spiritual base. Gerry, Richard and I all know that “Love is work in action,” and wish to create more of what makes us grow and glow. If you can come out for a visit or a workshop, or to volunteer in the garden, let us know.