Bodhivastu’s Big Indian Meditation Retreat
and Healing Sanctuary
Planned Facilities and Project Development
The Bodhivastu Foundation will implement several projects related with the Meditation Retreat and Healing Sanctuary in Big Indian, NY starting this Spring 2019. The Center will gradually become the home of many unique facilities designed to support both short and long term teachings, retreats, as well as group and individual practice. In the long run, the center will also provide facilities for the general public as well. The below video contains many of the ideas with the Stupa of the Great Awakening as a main focus for the land. Further down on the page, please see a list of projects Bodhivastu will take on in the next phases starting in 2019.
The Stupa of the Great Awakening Project
Film by White Conch Productions
Becoming awakened to our interdependence with each other and all of nature is key to human survival on our small planet. When individuals come to recognize this, team work towards a more peaceful and equitable society is a natural result. -Lama Rangbar-
One of the most powerful ways for us to become aware of our interdependence and our highest potential is through the use of powerful living symbols, such as stupas, mandalas and Shrines. A well constructed stupa based on sacred geometry and consecrated with mandalas and holy relics, not only has the power to completely transform the lives of individuals, but greatly improves circumstances for an entire country and then the world. By constructing a large stupa monument of Great Awakening in the correct location, people from all over the world can come into contact with and be inspired by the blessing energy, form, intention, and activity stream of the project.
Here is a list of the facilities that we plan to unfold over the next years:
Renovation of the Community Gathering and Meditation Shrine Hall.
The Community Gathering and Meditation Shrine Hall is an excellent structure which simply needs some renovations and love and care. Works planned include: Insulation for winter, re-wiring, installation of a new heating system, addition of toilet and kitchenette, shrine construction, some foundation, sill and siding repairs, and front porch reception area. This hall will serve several communities including the Dudjom Tersar Bodhivastu Sangha, Rudi students and the Sai Maa community for teachings, retreats and regular meditation practices.
Roads and pathways for the entire property
Several proposed roads and paths (indicated by orange color) are needed to allow for service access to retreat cabins and propsed facilities across the now 22 acres of center land. In addition, roads and pathways must be developed for the stupa area and a complete lakeside meditation circumambulation (Khorwa).
Installation and construction of several Retreat Cabins
Receiving teachings is the first step on our journeys of individual practice. But receiving teachings without practice is like buying a house plant and not watering it. Individual and group retreat is an essential part of any true spiritual path. Since people require a wide range of facilties to accomodate their individual levels, we will be building retreat cabins on different parts of the land in varying styles. The building of these cabins also provides a wonderful opportunity for all of us to learn about sustainable building practices and bring our learning and creativity to the path..
Renovation of Lama’s Cabin and Visitor’s quarters
Typically referred to as a rectory in western terms, once renovated, this cabin will serve both full time resident Lamas and visiting Lamas, teachers, and dignitaries. Although the cabin is badly in need of repairs, its restoration and improvement can become an immediate cause of people being able to stay at Big Indian for the various projects and events going forward.
Establishment of the Vajrakilaya Buddha Activity Mandala
Vajrakilaya Peace Mandala for Big Indian center
Accordingly, and behind the scenes, Lama Rangbar has been guiding the Bodhivastu Foundation in the commencement of several important projects including the construction of a Phurba Peace Mandala for Big Indian NY. Dawa Rinpoche and his consort Khandro Kunsang had already commenced the precursory works to establish their own Vajrakilaya World Peace Mandala in Iowa. However, during Acharya Lama Dawa Rinpoche’s visit to our Academy of Mantric Disciplines he stressed the importance and benefits of establishing Vajrakilaya Mandalas in general. Inspired by Rinpoche’s encouragement, Lama Rangbar has engaged highly trained Bhutanese craftsmen to create an entire Phurba Mandala made from Acacia wood according to the Namchak Pudri cycle of Dudjom Lingpa. The work started several months ago and now as of Mid November is about half way completed. (see photos below)
Lama Rangbar plans to start to get a place ready at our Meditation Retreat and Healing Sanctuary in Big Indian, NY this coming spring to receive and house the completed Mandala. For this Mandala stage we still need to raise another $7,500 which will bring us to the point where the completed mandala will arrive in the USA. People can connect to the blessing stream directly by supporting the fulfillment of this profoundly meaningful project by using the below donation page link.
Contemplative landscaped pathways will lead to representative temples from many countries, cultures, and faiths, showcasing their architectural styles. The gardens will provide many opportunities for personal and group meditation practice, arts, and discussions.
Center for Mind Sciences
In order for individuals to transform themselves adequate circumstances for practice and instruction are essential. In addition to this, efforts must be made to translate Buddhist understanding into modern terminology and to perform scenarios which illustrate and prove the benefits of meditation in scientific terms. The university will perform all these functions and more. This academy will also provide vocational and leadership training in the fields of peace activism, conflict resolution, renewable energy, and land regeneration.
The regenerative agricultural systems at the Stupa for the Great Awakening will provide the surrounding community with nutrient-dense, clean sources of food and medicine, grown using organic farming principals and free from any pesticides and insecticides.
By designing with whole ecological systems in mind, we will use techniques to mitigate ecological issues such as drought, flooding, and erosion. The agricultural practices will focus on building soil in the process of growing food.
Wellness Center and Health Clinic
An indigenous and alternative practices treatment spa will be a facility of the highest quality which enables the project to preserve and make use of valuable ancient methods of treatment.
There will be community residences, including townhouses, for resident practitioners and guest housing for the international Sangha.
Senior Contemplative Living Residences
Many westerners at the later part of life wish to grow old not only graceully but meaningfully integrating their lives with practice and further study. This is a fast growing segment of the population and will be accomodated in this center. A facility which can accommodate 80-100 senior people. In this context, contemplative assisted living refers to those who wish not only to age with dignity but who wish to use their time to gain insight through continued spiritual practice.
Natural Outdoor Amphitheater
An outdoor amphitheater structure is planned that would accommodate 200 people for music, dance, or theater events.
The Lakeside Meditation Path and the House of Teas
It is not surprising that doctors now realize the major benefits of simply being in nature. The lakeside circumambulation path (Khorwa in Tibetan) will allow both seasoned meditation practitioners and the general public to relax in nature while receiving great inspiration from a loving natural environment. Of course all pilgrims need sustenance and so in almost all seasons the teahouse will offer refreshment, enjoyment and sustainability of the monument and gardens.
Community Art Studios
Our existing barn at the center will be transformed into a ceramics and art studio. Largely, the art works for the stupa will occur here as well as other works such as the creation of wealth, Naga and Earth Vases, Tsa tsas, etc. This will provide space for several art mediums to be used such as a ceramics and casting. A large production kiln has already been donated and all that remains is to upgrade the facilities with a proper poured floor, electricity and lighting and some basic plumbing.
An exercise building will facilitate movement teachings and practices of various body movement systems. These are deemed essential for individual and community health. TO see the designs and learn more, click here:
1. Lake dredging, clearing and establish Lakeside trail
5. Lakeside Teahouse gazebo, Naga Palace, Nad Jom water prayer wheel
6. Water System, a. catchment, b. artwork c. swamp work
8. Septic renovation, a. meditation hall, b. Lodge
9. Cabin installs, central bathroom facilities a. planning and town permission b. site prep for each one, c. order raw lumber for seasoning, d. engage Amish
10. Guru Ku import , filling and consecration
11. New community building planning
12. Vajrakilaya Mandala installation in existing stupa
13. Lodge teardown
14. Electrical system temp
15. Ceramics Barn. a. pour slab, b. import Kiln, c. electrical system.
16. Stupa of Great Awakening
Letters from Major Buddhist Teachers
Endorsing the Stupa Project
Since religious differences have been cited by many as a cause of strife in this world, this project also aims to use every opportunity to illuminate the commonalities between belief systems while extolling their individual beauties and contributions to humankind's search for higher spiritual truths. By this, we can finally live in a world founded on principles of wisdom and compassion. Through the activity of constructing the Stupa of Great Awakening, we are generating a critical mass of like-minded awake individuals while establishing well-being, peace and prosperity. Our projects help us learn to cherish our neighbors, and live an awakened life to its fullest. This project offers a common ground for all, an accomplishment for the benefit of all beings that we can all be a part of. A lasting beacon of interdependence and wisdom for all future generations.
The Need for Peace
Film by Ashley Young
We live in a time of great challenge and great opportunity. We are rapidly destroying our environment while warfare, mental afflictions, poverty, and environmental exploitation affect everyone without bias. Collective consequences are more clearly evident to most of us. As a result, the time is ripe for an unprecedented collective shift in awareness on our planet. The time has arrived when we can finally awaken to the full understanding and implications of our interdependence and act on it.