An epidemic looms, and an opportunity manifests…

On the advice of Thay Phap Luu I was on the cusp of departure for Thailand to stay as a visiting monk at the Plum Village centre, when news of the spread of COVID-19 started to circulate. Needless to say they have closed the centre to overseas visitors. Almost the same week, I received news that a farm had been purchased in the Blue Mountains near Bilpin, and offered to the Plum Village Australia community for the purpose of building a centre there. Senior western monastic Thay Phap Hai, visiting Australia, and also caught by the spreading epidemic, is going to go there to start the long process of building the centre, and along with Nathan, I have come to end a hand. perched on Bell’s Line of road, overlooking the Blue Mountains National Park section referred to as the Devil’s Wilderness, the place was once a peach farm, but now has a few remnant raspberries, a magnificent view, and trails into the recently burned forest. It feels full of potential.

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