Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tsegyalgar East and the New Gakyil – 2015 Crisis and Opportunity—Meet New Yellow Gakyil Member Diane Kramer

[Diane Kramer and Fred Klarer]

The following post by new yellow Gakyil member Diane Kramer is the first of more to come introducing our new Gakyil

I was asked to write something as a new member coming onto the Gakyil as part of Yellow, the financial and organizational admin section of the Gakyil. Upon reflection, I decided to interview myself about what this all means to me, so here goes:

Why did you join the Gakyil?
I started coming up to Tsegyalgar with my husband, Fred, a former Buddhist monk in the Chinese tradition, in the early nineties. We came up for a few years from Long Island. During this time we built and hosted an early  website with Ed Goldberg.Then, we were drawn to Vajrayana Rinpoches, always Nyingma, such as Chagdud Tulku.

In 2011, we both felt the pull to return to the Dzochen path and started coming regularly to Rinpoche’s retreats and to Jim Valby weekends.

Walking around at the last retreat I felt comfortable and welcomed by community members, especially by Jim Valby and Katherine, Marilyn, Harvey Kaiser, Robin and Diane Sievers, plus others. While feeling comfortable, I also felt like a guest. Here were at least a hundred people working to make this retreat a great success and an experience of oneness for all of us, and I was not making a contribution. At that moment, I went up to Al Daggitt and said: I want to join the Gakyil. He sent me to Ed Hayes who put me to work opening wine bottles for the Ganapuja. I applied to the Gakyil and was accepted.

Now, here I am, happy at my good fortune and amazed at what has been accomplished.

What has it been like to start up on the Gakyil on Yellow?
It has been like being thrown into the deep water without being a good swimmer J I am learning and learning fast. I am in constant contact with Al and Dominick, my fellow Yellows, and looking forward to the first Gakyil meeting on Sunday, September14th. We are coming up from Long Island for the event.

What are the Challenges?
Though money is a problem, Rinpoche says  not to make it about money. And I do not think our challenges are, at their root, money. More I see the challenge as developing a sustainable community that is self-sufficient, even when Rinpoche is not available. I see a community that keeps on expanding as each person recognizes his or her role and takes on the responsibility of helping all and each of us to self-liberate. That to me means Opportunity.

What are the Opportunities?
From what I have learned so far, we have the Opportunity to further the work of past Gakyil members and other workers for the community this year by moving forward on a number of fronts. We need to:

·   *Align more with the IDC and take our place more fully in the global community as it grows and develops

·    *Grow our membership through orienting new members more fully (as Merigar West is doing – see the article in the Mirror

·    *Find ways of more Community Involvement for more members, as was expressed in the blog A Message from the Tsegyalgar East Development Committee

·    *Develop more activities for members that will also create sustainable income streams to keep the organization going

What is my personal part in this?
I have had experience as a clinical, organizational, teaching and research psychologist over a 45 year career. I have run both profit and not-for-profit organizations. I hope I can use my resources to be helpful making good decisions in our collaborative Gakyil. My desire is for a self-sustaining and vibrant Dzochen community that attracts more members as we expand what we can be to and for each other.

With Love, Diane
Dr. Diane Kramer 

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