Last Saturday I went to the Regional Sangha Day hosted by the Leeds Serene Reflection Meditation Group at All Hallows Church in Leeds. About 30 people came, including 6 monks, from various meditation groups and temples in the region and as far away as Telford (130 miles). The day included meditation, discussions, walks and social time plus plenty of tea and cake. The program for the day was well thought-out and enabled us to be together in a variety of ways. I think there is no substitute for meeting together with other Sangha members in the same place, from time to time, however it works for each of us to do that. A Sangha is a community, and communities seem to function best if they can come together face to face now and again.
The same weekend around 25 private houses in Wirksworth opened their gardens to the public for the annual Hidden Gardens and Courtyards of Wirksworth event. On Sunday afternoon I walked the Hidden Gardens trail and saw a lot more of Wirksworth than I had before. Many people were on the streets, walking from garden to garden, greeting friends and neighbours, and it felt like the event was one of those things that help to bind the local community together. And I probably wasn’t the only one who went home and put on their gardening gloves!