Response to the Sakyong’s Letter of the Morning Sun
This fall, the committee offered a response to the Sakyong’s Letter of the Morning Sun, where he asked individuals and groups to contemplate their inspiration and commitment to enlightened society. We wrote this both as a way to renew and enliven our link and commitment to the Sakyong, as well as to help clarify our vision and goals for the future. Below is a summary of our response.
1. What group commitment will the Nalanda Translation Committee make to practice and study?
- Increasing our efforts to be precise, respectful, and kind, with particular attention to kind communication and decorum.
- Maintaining the aspiration that all of our activities be of benefit to the Sakyong and the Sakyong Wangmo, the Shambhala sangha, and all beings.
- Attending Werma and other feasts on a regular basis, as well as practice together as a committee.
- Practicing a liturgy we have previously translated, or are currently translating, together as a group.
- Deepening our understanding of the dharma through our own individual studies
- Familiarizing ourselves with the current Shambhala curriculum.
- Furthering our knowledge through our continuing group translation work with various teachers.
2. What will the Nalanda Translation Committee offer to Shambhala?
- Offering ourselves to translate projects requested by the Sakyong and the Sakyong Wangmo.
- Offering our skills as translators, teachers, leaders, researchers, and practitioners.
- Offering ourselves as a resource to the Shambhala community, providing translations and manuals for the practice and enrichment of dharma in English and supporting the sangha, particularly the sadhakas, in their practice and study.
- Aspiring to engage with the community in sharing the wealth of knowledge that we have been privileged to receive from many meditation masters and scholar-practitioners.
- Passing on our translation and publication heritage to new apprentices, a priority for the continuity of the rich tradition of group translation we have learned.
- Continuing our community outreach of Translators’ Teas (an event where the sangha can askquestions and discuss various topics with the committee), our annual newsletter, and our website.
- Committing to continuing to examine, improve, and document the practices and structure of our organization so that whatever we have to pass on to the next generation works well and is of value.
- Mining the knowledge of our senior members, documenting all we can for the future.
- Exploring how we could create further study aides to support Shambhala students, such as compiling Tibetan and Sanskrit glossaries from the talks and writings of the Vidyadhara and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.
- Exploring the possibility of working together as translators at Seminaries and other large programs, providing support for the participants while there.
- Furthering our relationships with other publishers within Shambhala, such as advising Shambhala Media on Tibetan and Sanskrit terminology so that the teachings will be as clear and accurate as possible.
- Making further efforts to connect with the larger scope of our mandala, supporting translation into other languages and becoming more connected to other Nalanda groups in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and beyond.
- Working with the Kalapa Executive, the Mandala Council, the Office of Practice and Education, the Shambhala centers, the Chögyam Trungpa Legacy Project, and others to increase our lateral connection throughout the mandala.
- Since due the nature of our work, we are a connection point for both newer and older students, and the Tibetan and Western worlds, continuing to explore how we can make the best use of this role in order to help bridge these spheres.
3. What does the Nalanda Translation Committee aim to do in the world as a Shambhalian organization?
- As the mark of a learned person or group is gentleness, aiming to become thoroughly processed and truly learned so that we can communicate our knowledge by manifesting kindness, and, with that in mind, offering our experience to other translation groups beyond the Shambhala community, in particular the tradition of group translation and sustainable financial models.
- Reaching out to other groups, such as assisting the monastic schools of Trungpa Rinpoche and Karma Senge Rinpoche in Tibet, and engaging with the Shambhala School in Halifax.
- Aiming to participate with the greater world of Tibetan translation, offering our efforts to larger translation projects such as participating in “84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha.”
- Being a resource for Karma Senge Rinpoche and the twelfth Trungpa tülku in translating all of the Vidyadhara’s English works into Tibetan.
- Aspiring to work on more projects that could be made available to the general public (as most of our work is restricted).
- Improving our environmental sustainability by investigating better alternatives for our office and publications materials.
- Strengthening an atmosphere of kindness and respect within our group, continuing to seek further connection with the center of the mandala, including consulting regularly with President Reoch.
For more information on our current projects, see What We’ve Been Working On.