The Buddha image on my plate is a photo of a large, bronze Buddha that sits in the shrine room of Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery, Redwood Valley, Northern California, near where I used to live. It is a copy of a 7th century Buddha from the temple complex at Borobudur, on the island of Java, Indonesia. I am a lay member of Abhayagiri Monastery, and this statue reminds me of my spiritual home. “Abhayagiri” means “Fearless Mountain”, and the Buddha has his empty right hand raised in a gesture of peace, the “Abhaya” mudra: he is unarmed, and there is nothing to fear. In these troubling times, may we be at peace, with goodwill towards all beings.
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