Phapha or almsgiving ceremony
On a beautiful sunny day during the early summer we hosted a so called Phapha (almsgiving) ceremony within the monastery garden. The event was initiated by Khun Vandee – one of our supporters from the Zürich area – who has been very dedicated to help with the expenses for the present building project on the monastery roof. Already in the summer of 2015 we had a similar ceremony to support the reconstruction of the monastery roof, but at that time it was still within the planning stage. This year everyone could see the building work in progress (nearly half finished), with a huge crane overtowering the Chalet Dhammapala at the Waldrand.
For the monastic Sangha an event of such nature is again and again very touching and a trigger for an overflow of collective joy, when so many people have gathered with the sole purpose to simply express their support, kindness and generosity. As the joy aspect is of course mutual, one only had to have a look around during this day to see so many radiant and happy faces. So it doesn’t come as a surprise, if one recollects that the Buddha described Dana (a term from the Buddhist text language meaning generosity) as one of the most important prerequisites for the spiritual path. Without opening the heart for gestures of generosity and kindness towards other beings one’s spiritual devellopment will inevitably end up in a cul-de-sac. But with right understanding Dana, together with ethical integrity and meditation, represent the main pillars, on which the whole structure of Dhamma-practice may be erected.