What is your role at Buddhafield?
I am the Buddhafield Base Events Lead, planning ways to engage people through events and running specific Base events that build awareness and funds for the project. I also lead the ‘Rituals Arts Team’ at Buddhafield Village Family Retreat alongside a few others, rejoicing in ceremony, ritual, music and performance.
How did you get involved with Buddhafield?
I met the wonderful Ratnarashi and Samasuri at my eldest daughters Steiner kindergarten a decade ago and as fellow parents I was always struck by their Zen approach to all things. They made me aware of their relationship to Non Violent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg and their Buddhafield Sangha. They extended an invitation to Buddhafield Family Camp ‘Village Retreat’. After attending our first camp as single mum and practitioner of Buddhist teaching for over 20 years, my entire world changed where I finally found a place to integrate my years of practice alongside my two children.
What’s your role now?
I now feel completely immersed in all things Buddhafield and try and find ways to have more Buddhafield in mine, my now three children and the lives of others. Having co-written the Buddhafield Base song ‘Home’ as the Lucid Bhajans alongside Music Producer, Barney Scott Rhythm we led a number of singing sessions at the festival this year to spread the Base Project through song. I am hoping to find more ways to bring song and the practice of mantra in a kirtan style to Buddhafield events to spread the power of sound for transformation. I am also in the process of reigniting the infamous ‘Buddhafield in the city’ event productions in London and Bristol, and innovating a ‘dance and sound immersion’ event – all on the horizon soon!
What is the most important thing that Buddhafield Base is offering the world now?
The ambitious intention to create a place everyone can call ‘home’ and on land in the UK is a wonderful and massive offer to the world! Through my other work in sharing self-realisation practices of yoga, music and art, there is a continual awareness of how humans want to feel loved, connected, closer to nature and to nurture their creative and spiritual aspects of self. The values of Base prioritise them all!
Which of the four values of Buddhafield Base (authentic community, meaningful work, care for land, celebration imagination creativity) is most important to you and why?
I’ve had to think long and hard when putting pen to paper on this question. As the first that came to mind was ‘imagination and creativity’, but then my monkey mind quickly changed its answer to ‘meaningful work’. I noticed this was because this has been my art of practice since becoming a parent… how to nurture the creative self, alongside working and ensuring that their is meaning and purpose to ensure ultimate wellbeing is at the centre in all that I do. My thoughts then fell into the lap of community and land. Caring for the land has symbolised an appreciation for land, plain and simple, walking the land and appreciating the grounding I feel upon it and the spaciousness it creates in me as I walk this path of life is paramount. I particularly notice this when I reach the summit of any hill or in the presence of trees and water. Community exists in finding connection with both likeminded humans but also in the inseparable qualities I see in all of us that walk this earth, and in the reflection that helps me find authentic relationships. So to be true, all the values go hand in hand. I very much appreciate the practices of Buddhafield that enable me to find the relationship with myself first and then the sangha that brings my joy and ability to be completely myself forth in ways I could never imagine.
Tell us about one of your Buddhafield high points.
Singing the Base song ‘Home’ on the main stages at Buddhafield Festival and hearing the crowd sing and chant along. It created a feeling of collective unity and manifestation. I wouldn’t be here today however, without the time I fully had an embodied understanding of the power that ritual holds and its importance in holding this path. When coming down from the hill at Frog Mill Land into the shrine room and meditating, after taking part in an immense Padmasambhava ritual under a full moon in recitation, dance, drumming, singing and fire ceremony, I had a feeling I was nothing and everything and found profound clarity on all the aspects of life that I felt connected to and an expansive heart like never before. For this moment and all that have followed, I have total gratitude for the environment & teachings that Buddhafield offers.
How about a low point?
Arriving at Village Retreat this year, held by the land, I felt every emotion in me let go and express itself freely without consent, off the back of an incredibly busy period of life, family and work. But was this a low point? I became aware of how vulnerable I felt exposing my true self, not being the upbeat can do person people see mostly. But the truth is, it was necessary, liberating and I am eternally grateful that Buddhafield literally only allows you to be genuinely true and shows how safe the environment it creates is to be just as you are. Fully enhanced by the words of Base Project Lead Lotus ( I am eternally grateful to have as a work colleague and to now call a friend) whom with total ease thanked me for showing myself fully, because in doing so it allowed her to recognise the struggles she saw in me as a reflection and what it is to be human. I opened like a flower, rather than weeping because of that one moment. Thankyou Lotus for your otherworldly wisdom and care for everything you turn your gaze towards.
Do you have any Buddhafield jokes?
All I can say to this is that I never laugh as much as I do when I am around Buddhafield friends and folk. Seeing the joy in al things is one of Buddhafield’s greatest qualities.
Can you share something unexpected about yourself or your life?
I believe a cold shower in the mornings and a lavender bath at night-time is the cure for everything.