By Michael Colton

Though my main practice is in the Soto Zen tradition, which has been the foundation of most of my practice experience, I remain still very drawn to and appreciative of the teachings and many other wonderful things that Geshe Loden has given us through TBS. 

Michael Colton digging on Saturday morning at the centre. Volunteers relaxing at morning tea at right.

One aspect that I particularly value has been working in the garden. 

Though pushing wheel barrows full of mulch may sound like slavery, my association with the work is really more one of freedom.  

How is that? Well, it’s not a ‘job’. I’m not paid, don’t have targets or need to be worried about what the boss thinks, but am just there because I choose to be.

 It’s obligation free. Also, working in the garden is for a purpose I believe in – the Buddhadharma. 

Then there’s the fact that I’m helping to give something to others – to create a beautiful space and refuge from the stresses and difficulties of their daily lives. 

In addition, it gives me the opportunity to connect with others who are like-minded and to engage in discussions on Dharma and practice.

All this amounts to something that brings me quite a bit of happiness.