Saturday, June 15, 2013

The lotuses return to Los Angeles

Amber Dorrian, Dhr. Seven, Wisdom Quarterly; Carlos Lozano (, June 15, 2013)
Lotus flower, symbol of rising above the fray and blossoming (tvladusi/
Lilies (Golan Jesus Roncero)
After a two-year, $45-million makeover, Echo Park Lake will reopen [today] to the public Saturday morning with a ceremony that will include [our Mexican Jewish everyman] Mayor-elect Eric Garcetti.
The festivities are scheduled from 10 a.m. until noon. The park is located in the 1700 block of Park Avenue.
The lake was completely drained and cleaned before being refilled and restocked with plants. A clay liner was installed to reduce water leakage through the lake bottom.
Rehabilitation plan (
The 29-acre lake was originally built in the 1860s as a reservoir for drinking water. But over the years the lake became polluted and was identified by the state in 2006 as an impaired body of water.
Today, the lake and surrounding park have been fully rehabilitated, with lake, landscaping, and wetland improvements. The lake serves primarily as a detention basin for the city’s storm drain system, while also providing recreational benefits and wildlife habitat. More
An oasis in an asphalt desert with skyscrapers in the distance (Lotus Festival/
The Blooming Lotus
Andrew Olendzki, translator (Udayin Thera, Thag 15.2)
Lotus-blooming buddhahood (
This poem by the Elder (Thera) Udayin evokes one of the most famous of Buddhist images and is laced with meaning on many levels. In one sense -- emerging from the psychological ethos of early Buddhist teaching -- it can be taken to describe the ability of the awakened person to thrive in the world of sensory experience without clinging [to it] or [being overwhelmed by] attachment. Though the human condition is rooted in the desires that give rise to all life and [the delusion of] selfhood, one can learn to live in this world without being bound by the impulse to crave pleasure and avoid pain. One gets "drenched by the world" when one succumbs to to the range of grasping behaviors which inevitably bring about suffering -- the mind clings to an object like water that permeates something and drenches it. Here we see a Buddha who does not transcend the world, but lives in it for forty-five years with a mind free of all attachments. More

As the flower of a lotus,
Arisen in water, blossoms,
Pure-scented and pleasing the mind,
Yet is not drenched by the water,
In the same way, born in the world,
The Buddha abides in the world;
And like the lotus by water,
He does not get drenched by the world.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo - The Lotus Sutra is Buddha's most referred to teaching on
"emptiness" and "not-self" (shunyata and anatta), the central concept necessary for
enlightenment. It is an experience and not something that can be fully taught. More

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