Boddhi Seed experience and the motivation to continue
Updated: Jul 12, 2019
"When I was 20 I came to the realisation the Dharma was the most important thing that I could give my life to. I was studying at uni, but I realised that if the basic underpinnings of how I moved through the world were not in accordance with what was actually happening, then I would inevitably be setting myself up for pain and suffering. I made the decision to drop out of uni and begin a journey into the Dharma.
This is a decision I will never regret, but there were definitely some challenges in making this transition. I felt very certain that I wanted to find a way to integrate these skills and understandings into my life as I found it, rather than ordaining as a monk or taking up another sort of hermitage. So I continued to live in a city environment while working to save money for more retreat work.
One of the challenges I faced was the difficulty of integrating the mindstates and qualities of the retreat space into a busy and challenging environment such as a city. I would often find myself falling back on old habits and patterns, and struggled to hold the thread of the dharma between retreats.
In 2016, I attended Bodhi Seeds which was a 6 week retreat for people of my age to live in community while deepening with their practice. This provided a fantastic opportunity for me to build a sense of community and family with like-minded people of my generation, and also allowed me to integrate the Dharma into community living. This has been invaluable for my growth and my ability to carry the thread of the Dharma into more complex and challenging environments.
Bodhi Seeds has now evolved into a 3-month retreat, that will be happening in Brazil. This is a fantastic opportunity to immerse in the Dharma and integrate it into community living. 3 months is enough time for this way of being to seep into the depths of my bones, and to allow me to truly let go of old habit patterns and form new routines in a new community. Because this is happening in Brazil there is also a profound opportunity to extend my sense of family and belonging outside of Aotearoa New Zealand to an international community, and have a sense that my journey is connected to the good work happening all over the world.
Feeling the pain of the crisis points we are meeting as a society and as a planet, I can't think of a more important undertaking than healing ourselves and building wholesome communities with deep compassionate intentions. I believe that we will heal our planet through creating the world that we want to see, and not by fighting the systems that no longer serve us.
I have a sense that there are countless people of this generation all around the world who are asking the same questions and looking for the same opportunities to grow something beautiful for the world. I hope that this message can find you so that you can have the opportunity to be a part of this project. If the timing is not right for you then please contact us anyway, and we can build and connect an international community of people that are creating the world we want to see. Maybe there will be future opportunities for us to come together, and if we have established contact then we can make that happen."
Daniel Burgess Milne, Dharma student/practioner and musician. Participant of Bodhi Seeds, retreat for Young Adults, from 2016 to 2018.