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Rohatsu 2011

Today is the first day of Rohatsu Week, a time when Zen Buddhists traditionally commemorate Buddha's enlightenment by practicing long periods of zazen, or seated meditation.  I will be doing a lot of my sitting on a Cathay Pacific flight to Laos later this week.

Am initiating a new project in collaboration with the WWF Greater Mekong Programme to work on the sustainable management of rattan at the village level in Laos and Cambodia. Fits nicely with the work that I have been doing in central Vietnam over the past two years (see Where Are Those Transects II, Dakrong Workshop, and Rattan Bundles). [NOTE: Image above from Shwedagon Pagoda shows golden Buddha sitting under a bo tree (Ficus religiosa L.) that was reportedly grown from a cutting taken from the original one at Bodh Gaya in India (see Another Bo Tree). Nats - and Burmese monk - to the right, look on reverently].

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