Kagyu Changchub Chuling seal     Newsletter — July 2016
Greetings, !

In this issue, we are happy to apprise you of two creative and enjoyable fundraising activities taking place this summer. In addition, we begin a series in which we feature exceptional thankgas, curated by our own Sanje Elliott, an esteemed thankga painter and collector. 

We begin with gratitude for KCC's board of directors, who make this spiritual community so successful and effective.  

With Gratitude

By Jennifer Cox

This month, we want to acknowledge the Board of Directors: Tim Campbell, Linda Besant, Holly Hisamoto, John Jennings, Sandy Pollock and Pat Parker. Our thanks also go to Peter Frothingham, minute taker extraordinaire.

The board of directors is always on top of what needs to be done - ready to listen, problem solve and make things happen at KCC! They dedicate a Sunday afternoon every month to thinking about KCC from an administrative side. Thank you to the Board for keeping our foundation and intentions clear and for weaving the administration so beautifully into our Dharma center.

Sit For Mindfulness
In This Issue

With Gratitude

Sit for Mindfulness

Painting Series at SCOL

Featured Thankga

Events Update





Jennifer Cox,
Sanje Elliott,
Rosemarie Sweet, and
Ryan Fitz contributed to the production of this newsletter.

By Jennifer Cox

Raise Pledges for KCC by Meditating!

NE U.S. Grant Place and NE 33rd
12:30pm - 6:00pm

This labor day weekend, KCC is putting on a sit-a-thon!


We have all contributed to a walk, a ride, and a marathon to support other important causes. Now it is our turn to sit in support of something we believe in.

  • We all have friends and family members who are curious to try meditation. This is a great opportunity for them to join us!
  • Plus, mindfulness practice contributes to the welfare of all beings
  • AND, supporting practice contributes to the welfare of all beings!

What does a sitter do and how does this work?

Sitters are the heart of this event.  We are seeking to recruit at least 51 sitters by July 24th. Each sitter does the following:

  • Pledges to sit for mindfulness on Sept. 3rd for any amount of time they choose.
  • Raises funds for KCC before the event, by asking family members, neighbors, friends and colleagues to sponsor their sit.
  • Defines their own amount of time they will sit, from one to four sessions.

Sitters will receive an instruction packet describing how to ask for contributions, with a donation record sheet, credit card forms, donor receipts for IRS purposes, and collection envelopes. If you want to gather contributions but cannot be there on September 3rd, we will gratefully apply your pledges to another sitter’s efforts.

If you wish to sit or otherwise volunteer, please contact jcox@kcc.org. Help will be needed to set up, staff drink and information tables, monitor the meditation area, assist with the snacks and celebration and clean up.


Painting At the Land of Retreat

By Jennifer Cox

Beginners Welcome!

Saturday, July 30
9:00am - 5:00pm

Saturday, August 6
9:00am - 5:00pm

With Jef Gunn

There is still room to sign up for the next installment of the summer painting series out at SCOL.

This is a unique opportunity to experience the land in a different way. For those with no painting background, Jef Gunn will guide you through a day of painting the sacred high desert retreat landscape. He will also be teaching an experienced painters workshop the following weekend. If you are a beginner and take the first class, you are welcome to come to the second class as well. There will be a 10% discount for anyone who signs up for two classes.

Jef has been painting in the California, Washington and Oregon countrysides for forty years, and he held residencies in Barcelona and Paris in the 1980s. His work moves between abstraction and spontaneous realism, and he has been teaching for twenty years. Jef currently teaches painting workshops at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and in his own Portland studio. With a balance of humor, broad knowledge, and helpful insight, Jef is able to draw from each student her or his own natural way to paint. He is also fond of applying historical examples in his teaching, especially those of the Impressionist and Modern periods.

Registration ends soon, so sign up today.

Featured Thankga: Vajradhara

By Sanje Elliott

Vajradhara (Sanskrit), Dorje Chang (Tibetan), is the first figure in the Kagyu Lineage. Tilopa, the first human in the lineage, received direct teachings from Vajradhara on the qualities of emptiness, and passed them on to the rest of the lineage.

Vajradhara is said to be a "primordial" or "Adi Buddha" and embodies the qualities of emptiness, thus his blue body color. He has essentially the same attributes as the Nyingma deity, Kuntuzangpo, except that Kuntuzangpo is always shown naked without either Buddha robes or the Sambhogakaya clothing of the Vajradhara.

In addition, Vajradhara is said to be the source of the Buddhas of the five Wisdom Buddha families: Amitabha (red), Ratnasambhava (yellow), Akshobya (blue), Ratnasambhava (green), and Vairocana (white).

This painting was created by Bhutanese painter, Thinley, whom I first met at Rumtek, Sikkim, in 1971. Thinley now lives in Kathmandu, where he continues to paint. This thangka is in my personal collection and will be given to KCC eventually.

July Events

Upcoming events at KCC include some new and some continuing opportunities, but please note the Thursday evening Mind Training Study Group is taking a break. Keep a watch on the website, www.kcc.org, for updates. For now, here is what is happening:

All events are at KCC Urban Center unless otherwise noted.

Young Adult Group

This monthly meeting welcomes the under-40 set to gather and talk about the dharma as it relates to daily life.

Friday, August 5, 2016 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

All-Day Sit: Zhinay

Resident Lama Michael Conklin provides detailed instruction on the practice of Zhinay,  the foundation of spiritual practice at KCC, on alternating first Sundays from 9:00am to noon. Following a potluck lunch, there is a question-and-answer session from 1:30pm to 2:45pm, and then a last session of meditation ending at 4:00pm.

Sunday, July 3, 2016 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

Newcomers’ Night

This is a great opportunity to stop by KCC, ask questions, and get acquainted with the community, as well as the ways of Tibetan Buddhism as practiced at KCC. If you are new or sort of new or just want the chance to be reintroduced to KCC, please stop by.

Thursday, July 21, 2016 - 7:30pm to 9:30pm

Practicing the Four Opponent Powers - Invigorating Your Practice in the Mahamudra Program

The third in a series of four classes, this event will include a prepared teaching on the Four Opponent Powers, Vajrasattva group practice together, an opportunity to share experiences in community (particularly carrying practices aligned with purification and Vajrasattva), and a ngondro and mahamudra question and answer session.

Saturday, July 23  9:00am — 12:00pm
Led by Erik Fromme and Bill Spangle




Painting at the Land of Retreat

The second and third summer painting classes hosted by KCC at SCOL, where participants will spend the day painting high desert prairie, arid brushland, and pine and oak savannah landscapes under the guidance of highly-reputed plein air artists and instructors.

Jef Gunn will lead both classes. Visit the painting series website for dates and details about subsequent classes.

Saturday, July 30, 2016
Saturday, August 6, 2016
Ser Chö Ösel Ling


Board of Directors Meeting

Sunday, July 17, 2016 - 1:30pm to 4:30pm

For more events, view the KCC calendar.


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