This morning I was blessed to attend Tantric teachings with the (as often mentioned here) wonderful Ven. Thubten Lodey. While there I was immensely grateful and reflected again on how many opportunities we have here in Perth. Ever since 1962 when John Glenn passed over Perth as part of his orbit of the earth and thousands of street and porch lights were left on, so the city was clearly visible from space, Perth has been known as the City of Light.
Some New Agers, Wiccans and others have appropriated this tag to refer to the special spiritual qualities of Perth. Since hearing this when I was 16 (and some people do not know the origin of the term) I have never been clear exactly what they mean. But I do know how lucky we are when it comes to the Buddha Dharma. I remember reading on one of Al Billings Buddhists posts (don’t ask me which one) how most American Buddhist centres do not have a resident teacher; someone authorized to teach and holding regular lessons. Instead lay teachers may hold meditation meetings with their teacher visiting once or twice a year.
Now in Perth, still a small-medium city, we certainly do have centres like this. For example, the Diamond Way centre of the controversial Lama Ole. However, we also have centres with resident Lamas and teachers. Just of the top of my head (please do not take offence if someone does not appear on this list) there are:
- Lama Chime of the Origins Centre and Tig-Le.
- Ven Dondrup of the Hayagriva Centre
- Ven Thubten Lodey of Phendheling
- Geshe Jampel Senge of the Tashi Choeling Centre
- Ajahn Brahm of the Bodhinyana Monastery and the Buddhist Society of Western Australia
All of these teachers are also internationally regarded – they are the ones travelling to other places, giving Dharma talks 🙂
It fairly gorms the mind, it does. So maybe there is something to this City of Light stuff after all?