10 August 2019 at Merigar West, Italy
It is still nighttime, soft morning darkness at Merigar, on this special day in August. Lit by stars, the moon and flashlights we progress silently from all directions joining the main light, the Gönpa. We all sit here together from different continents to practice the worldwide Guruyoga also with our siblings connected by webcast.
This time it is not our Dear Master who leads the practice in front of us or on our screens. Adriano Clemente speaks to us about recognising our real nature through the experience of clarity produced by vajra breathing.
Once the practice is done, we have to integrate our presence into the nice surprise-breakfast offered at the Yellow House. An hour to enjoy time with old or new friends, trying to understand our condition.
Then, from 7am onwards the daylong Guruyoga practice starts in the Gönpa. It is an opportunity to gather for collective chants and mantras to relax together guided by different instructors or umzesof the day. Continuously, without a break, every hour new arrivals join the group while others leave.
At 10am the doors of the Great Stupa of Merigar open. In a naturally silent and respectful way we proceed, everyone in their own time and at their own pace, down towards the Stupa to pay homage to the bodily remains of our Beloved Master, Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, some of us circumambulating around the Stupa, some of us sitting in the shade, practicing or dwelling softly on our emotions, our memories. Seeing the body of the One who gave us so much, an immense gratitude arises.
A little photographic overview of all the Dzogchen Gars is on display in the Mandala Hall. Some people dance the Vajra Dances on the mandala, integrating.
It brings the thought that today we are just at the beginning, that the Master has not left us. Our community is strong and evolving within His vision. In a way miracles happen every day at Merigar.
After a great worldwide collaboration workshop of Ganapuja preparation, we are ready in and around the Gönpa to start the Ganapuja with the Invocation of Samantabhadra and the Invocation of the Lamp. Together, meeting sights full of energy and light. Just after the ritual, the joy of Khaita Dances brings us even closer.
The day draws to a close dancing the Dance of the Song of the Vajra on the outdoor mandala, until we can hardly see it in the twilight, naturally remaining still seated in silence, in the rays of setting sunlight. A few moments later the blazing sunset strikes the Stupa in all its glory.
As the day draws to a close each person returns to the place they came from, like waves spreading out from Merigar. The beautiful memories we take with us and our bodies need to rest from the long day.
Elerin Uibu and Hubert Kotowicz