Today is the first day of the Tibetan New Year built on the cycles of the moon rather than the sun, so it’s the first day of the new moon.
It is considered a very auspicious month for practice and so galvanises everyone to put on a special spurt of energy into their practice which has to be a good thing whatever one might believe about it. I always feel it makes sense for us to celebrate Losar as well as the Western calendar’s new year just because everyone is celebrating together at that time so it has to be good tendrel*.
This year is designated the earth pig year – which sounds very grounded, solid and firm to me. Pigs have many good qualities and traditionally are associated with being peace loving, honest, sincere and successful in dealing with money, business and academic matters. That’s what we need!
At the Hermitage there is a crowd of us celebrating with walking around the stupa, purification of the site with incense and mantras, a smoke offering puja, blessing and putting up new prayer flags and the Samantabhadracharyapranidhana and meditation this afternoon when we are promised a downpour of rain!
I am then going back into retreat until 23rd February.
With best wishes to everyone for the Earth Pig year and much love
*tendrel – a Tibetan word that relates to auspicious connections and interdependence
Losar – Tibetan New Year is an auspicious time for making offerings. If you would like to make an offering to Lama Shenpen in appreciation of her work and teachings, please do so here.