Welcome

Welcome to the Buddhist Council of Wales site. Here you will find details of events, information and news relating to the organisations which are members of the Council and also to other Buddhist organisations – a resource for all Buddhists in Wales.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Buddhist Council of Wales working for Buddhists in Wales

The following events were attended by a Buddhist Council of Wales representative:

8th March – ‘Inspirational Women’ an interfaith event for International Women’s Day, organised by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Nor’dzin Pamo (BCW Chair) was one of the speakers.
15th March
Interfaith Council for Wales event at the Cardiff Reform Synagogue

16th March Interfaith Council for Wales meeting. Lin Ashby spoke about the Charities Commission (see below for more details of this meeting).
28th March ‘Has Wales Become a Godless Society?’ Gorwel Debate (please see Nor’dzin’s personal blog for more details of this event) 
30th March BCW bi-annual meeting (see separate post for details) 
3rd April Faith Communities Forum meeting, with the First Minister and other AMs (see below for more details of this meeting).

Events to which a representative of the Buddhist Council of Wales were invited, but no representative was available to attend:

7th March
The Muslim Council of Wales conference with partners in Wales exploring a community based response to violent extremism.

Race Equality First Youth Against Violent Extremism Project  4 visits to churches and mosques

Forthcoming events for which the Buddhist Council of Wales does not have an available representative:
July 20th 2017
Peace Mala Inter-faith Liturgy for World Peace at Llandaf Cathedral, Cardiff.
July 31st 2017
The Welsh National Service of Remembrance to mark the Centenary of the Third Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele) in Langemark, Belgium at 16:00 (local time)
Could someone from one of our Member Organisations attend this? Please contact the Buddhist Council of Wales at buddhistcouncilwales(at)gmail.com if you can help.


Interfaith Council for Wales meeting 16th March
Lin Ashby is the lead on faith-based charities for the Charities Commission. Many of Lin Ashby’s comments may be relevant to Buddhist groups and organisations:
  • if you have a constitution you are probably acting like a charity
  • even if you are not a charity, but work in that way, you need to observe the principles laid down by the Charities Commission
  • Trustees should reflect the organisation’s remit and be diverse (gender, age, able/disabled, etcetera)
  • buck stops with the Trustees they are in charge
  • the Governing Document of an organisation should include how to deal with a conflict of interest, and with disagreement, and include length of time in post for officers
  • a Code of Conduct is good to have
She will be offering free workshops for organisations. The BCW will let you know when these are arranged.

The TSPC (Third Sector Partnership Council) has proved its value and been successful in a couple of its faith-based campaigns:
  • Local Government wished to end Communities First. The TSPC succeeded in convincing government of the importance of Communities First and the problems that would arise if it was ceased to exist for those benefiting from its work. The government has changed its policy with regard to Communities First.
  • Jewish, Hindu, Sikh, and Muslim communities have religious requirements with regard to burial arrangements. Health and Social Care are now addressing these issues.
Faith Commuities Forum meeting 3rd April
  • Syrian refugees
  • Community Cohesion
  • Valleys Task Force
  • Budget Engagement



Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Historical context: Buddhist Council of Wales; Rhodri Morgan comment on Faith Communities Forum

The Buddhist Council of Wales was created at the request of the Welsh Government so that there was a formal organisation that could represent Buddhists in Wales. Buddhism is one of the nine major religions in Wales and it is growing in popularity. The Welsh Government’s response to the terrorist attacks of 9/11 was to ensure that there was a healthy dialogue between the divers religions in Wales. The Interfaith Council for Wales was established, from which representatives of each religion meet with the First Minister and other politicians in the Faith Communities Forum. The Buddhist Council of Wales has upheld this commitment to the Buddhist of Wales and ensured their representation since 2004. To continue this important work active members are urgently needed to get involved.

Wales takes great pride in being a tolerant society with long-standing multicultural and multi-faith traditions which are by now deeply engrained in many of our communities. Events happening elsewhere in the world can often bring problems and tensions to the surface and the Faith Communities Forum can then provide a valuable mechanism for dialogue and close co-operation between the different faiths in Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government and political parties.

Set up in the wake of the terrorist attacks of 9/11, it has played an important role in promoting better understanding and respect between communities. It also plays a key role in addressing issues of common interest and I value greatly the contribution made by the Forum to issues which have an impact on religious communities themselves and on the wider health of good community relations in Wales.



Rt Hon. Rhodri Morgan AM, First Minister for Wales 2000-2009

(Quotation link: http://www.cytun.org.uk/interfaithwales/interfaith_eng_home.html)

Thursday, 9 March 2017

The future of the Buddhist Council of Wales

The next meeting of the Buddhist Council of Wales (BCW) is on 30th March. The question has to be asked: ‘Will it be its last meeting?’

These are some of the questions that need to be addressed in the discussion of the future of the BCW:

  1. Do you want a Buddhist Council?
  2. Do you think other Buddhists in Wales want a Buddhist Council?
  3. If your answer to either 1 or 2 was ‘yes’, how can your group or organisation support the work of the BCW?
  4. If your answer to either 1 or 2 was ‘yes’, and you are not able to support the work of the BCW, how do you think it should function?
  5. Why do you think so many Buddhists groups and organisations in Wales do not join the BCW?
  6. Why do you think Buddhist groups in Wales do not actively use the BCW as a resource, such as regularly sending copy to post on this blog advertising their activities?
  7. Do you feel the BCW functions as a representative body for Buddhists in Wales?
  8. Do you have any comments or suggestions about the future of the BCW?
  9. Do you feel that the BCW should be dissolved?
  10. If your answer to 10 is ‘yes’, do you have any concerns that Buddhists in Wales would no longer be represented on the Interfaith Council for Wales, and to government via the Faith Communities Forum, if there were no longer a BCW?
If you would like to join in the discussion about the future of the BCW, please send your answers to buddhistcouncilwales@gmail.com or post them in comments on this blog. Thank you.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Newsletter – Buddhist Council of Wales supporting Interfaith events in Wales

The following events were attended by a Buddhist Council of Wales representative:

21st December 2016 – Ngakma Nor'dzin contributed to filming at Race Equality First in support of their work fighting hate crime
2nd February 2017 Can Muslims be British? organised by the Muslim Council of Wales
16th February Ngakma Nor'dzin conducted a Buddhist funeral

Events to which a representative of the Buddhist Council of Wales was invited, but no representative was available to attend:


28th December 2016 Hannukah celebration
27th January 2017 Holocaust Memorial Day
31st January – Youth Against Violent Extremism, Cardiff United Synagogue
1st March St David's Day service
7th March
The Muslim Council of Wales conference with partners in Wales exploring a community based response to violent extremism.


Forthcoming events for which the Buddhist Council of Wales does not have an available representative:
July 20th 2017
Peace Mala Inter-faith Liturgy for World Peace at Llandaf Cathedral, Cardiff.
July 31st 2017
The Welsh National Service of Remembrance to mark the Centenary of the Third Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele) in Langemark, Belgium at 16:00 (local time)
 

Could you attend an event on behalf of the Buddhist Council of Wales?
Please contact the Buddhist Council of Wales at buddhistcouncilwales(at)gmail.com if you can help.





Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Interfaith Week, meeting Bhante Bhodidhamma, Prison Chaplaincy, School Events – newsletter

November is a particularly busy month for the Buddhist Council of Wales because it includes Interfaith Week.  Since those reported in the first newsletter the following events were attended by a Buddhist Council of Wales representative:

28th October – an informal meeting with Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government
31st October Faith Communities Forum meeting with the First Minister
7th November meeting with Dawn Tilt, Co-ordinating Chaplain at Parc Prison, Bridgend, Wales *
8th November When Religion Makes the News, a day’s workshop organised by NUJ Training Wales
10th November Buddhist Council of Wales meeting
13th November Remembrance Sunday Service at the Welsh National War Memorial in Cardiff
15th November InterFaith Council for Wales event for Interfaith Week at Cardiff United Synagogue
17th November South Cardiff Interfaith Network Interfaith Week event
18th November Cardiff Muslim School assembly, with Christian and Jewish faith representatives
22nd November InterFaith Council for Wales meeting; Ngakma Nor’dzin, Chair of the Buddhist Council of Wales, was elected as Vice Chair for the IFCW
27th November Memorial Service for families who have suffered the death of a baby
28th November – Ngakma Nor’dzin had an informal meeting with Bhante Bodhidhamma of Satipanya. Satipanya are hoping to appoint a representative to attend the meetings of the Buddhist Council of Wales and so become Full Members
8th December VIth Form Conference at Monmouth Comprehensive School
Bhante Bodhidhamma and Ngakma Nor'dzin at Aro Ling Cardiff

Events to which a representative of the Buddhist Council of Wales were invited, but no representative was available to attend:

October 28th Diwali, Festival of Lights celebration organised by the Minority Ethnic Staff Network (MESN) in Welsh Government
6th November Lord Mayor’s Civic Service for Remembrance
24th November ‘Wales A Multicultural Nation’ event organised by the Cardiff Ecumenical Chaplaincy
26 November Interfaith Peace Symposium organised by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association
30th November – Launch of Wales Humanists at the Senedd
8th December ‘Does Wales need more Female Role Models’ event organised by Action for Children

There is also an event in July 2017 for which we do not have a representative to attend at the moment Peace Mala Inter-faith Liturgy for World Peace at Llandaf Cathedral, Cardiff Thursday 20th July. Could someone from one of our Member Organisations attend this? Please contact the Buddhist Council of Wales at buddhistcouncilwales(at)gmail.com if you can help.

* Following on from the meeting about Prison Chaplaincy, the Buddhist Council of Wales has been informed by Ven Canon Michael Kavanagh of the National Offender Management Service (NOMS), that all Buddhist chaplaincy in the UK, including Wales, is managed by Angulimala, the Buddhist Prison Chaplaincy Service. The Buddhist Council of Wales has written to Angulimala with a view to opening a dialogue with them.


Thursday, 24 November 2016

Welcome to The Tibetan Yungdrung Bön as an Associate Member

Lama Khemsar Rinpoche

The Buddhist Council of Wales is delighted to welcome The Tibetan Yungdrung Bön as an Associate Member. 


Here are a few extracts from their website:

The Buddha taught Yungdrung Bön Buddhism comprising of Sutra, Tantra, and Dzogchen in Shambala and Zhang Zhung more than 18,000 years ago. Eventually his teachings were imported into Tibet and are the original spiritual tradition of Tibet and the Tibetan people.



“Human Life, no matter how successful, famous, rich, and powerful one may think one is, it is completely incomplete without taking a proper spiritual path. All the external visible objects and internal thoughts and emotions are like soap bubbles which are subject to burst and keep on bursting! Yet, ignorantly, one is so much attached to all of these visions and therefore one suffers endlessly. Taking tranquilizer pills is not the answer, but to learn to detach from attachment is the supreme and lasting tranquilizer as Buddha Tonpa Shenrab and his successors have taught!”
— Lama Phuntsog Khemsar Rinpoche

PRAYER
May all the sentient beings that are
encompassed by the SKY be enriched with
happiness and the cause of happiness!
May all the sentient beings be parted from
suffering and the causes of suffering!
May the minds of all sentient beings abide
in the state of equipoise, in which there
exists neither happiness nor unhappiness!
May all sentient beings never be
separated from the happiness of the
Eternal state of the Mind!