Harvest of Peace 2019

Portland Shambhala celebrated our annual Harvest of Peace gathering on September 22. Harvest of Peace celebrates the fall equinox, is an opportunity to reflect on our life as a community, and is the main fundraiser for the center.

The day began with practice (after coffee and  a light breakfast).  Next we all stood up and walked around the shrine room to view and discuss the images that had been collected as part of a community collage.

The first image evoked the vastness of space and the intimacy of our efforts as a community. The earth and our human activities look very small from the moon; all of our efforts to engage with each other during the past year are accumulating and creating more community resiliency. (Each of the images in this blog post will show full size when you click on them.)

The next image collects bits from several different events:

  • A group photo from Shambhala Day 2019.
  • A mural facing us as we leave the building.
  • Bright afternoon light in the shrine room.
  • Paradoxes that we are holding in Shambhala (a flip chart that one group wrote down during a Town Hall meeting in May). In the discussion we still felt that we have to find the middle way or some underlying value that is expressed by both of the seeming opposites.
    • Being compassionate towards others while maintaining realistic boundaries.
    • Being generous and stingy at the same time.
    • “Those were the days” for Shambhala vs. “all we have is now.”
    • “Staying in Shambhala” vs “leaving Shambhala.”
    • “This Sangha is good” vs “Shambhala is bad.”
  • And several images representing governance, youth, aging and impermanence in our world…

The next two images evoked appreciation of food and included a haiku by Ann Cason.


New mown hay lying ’round,
Where golden sheaves standing, fall.
Impartial sun blazes.

— Ann Cason


Grasping, ignoring, fighting with self and others
Believing in me and enemies.


At open house brave dharma teachers tell jokes.
Definitely  lightheartedness woke me.
Shrines piqued curiosity,  and felt at home.

Breath,  body, wisdom. What’s going on now?
Crying during Sadhana of Mahamudra.
Three Jewels  protect.   What’s happening?

Sacred World

The elements speak while gardening.
Place many water offerings to invite rain.

— Timaree Bierle-Dodds

This diagram represents a hot discussion about how our community is both sprouting and dying at the same time.






After our tour of images we had several very touching oaths for office holders who are stepping down or stepping into their roles.  Rayna Jacobsen stepped down as Shastri after years of holding one office or another — back to 1984 when she first came to Portland. (Pictured on the left holding a gift with Bettina Hetz and Mark Douglass, and on the right, next to the White Tara banner)








Desung Aletha Eastwood (pictured next to the Kasung desk) stepped down as desung and Kristen Mullen (pictured in front of the Tiger, Lion, Garuda, Dragon banner) became the community’s new Desung.







Longtime volunteer Carol Lieberman stepped back from their years of service to the community, receiving a token our appreciation.

The fall fundraising campaign started towards its goals of $15,000 in one-time gifts and monthly dues increases of $1,000 per month with $8,600 in one-time gifts and $540 in monthly dues increases.

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