Monday, August 31, 2020

some insight into the monetery system we all live in, and a huge thank you to H.E. Garchen Rinpoche for showing me a brighter path

 

What a joy it is crafting prayer wheels 😊

As time goes by (some say faster and faster) I get to think a lot about "worth"… about my "worth" in this world…

When I was young, I was brought up to live and "see" the world as a community. Sharing everything we had down to our cloths. The most important rule we were taught was that work has the highest of values. There is nothing more important than hard work… they never taught us about money or how the economics of this world works…. I saw my first 100 shekel bill when I was maybe 10… we had no physical money, we were a social communist community (called Kibbutz for those of you who wish to explore it further) and we lived by the rule of "give all you can, get what you need". This worked great for about 80 years…

The point I am trying to convey is that in my mind, I did not have the correct "hard disk" to live comfortably in the "real" world that revolves around money… I had  a different hard disk and for some time, while I was living in the real world my attitude did not fit the situation… long story short, I became a homeless and had nothing to eat… that is what happens when you do not teach a child the correct way to handle money, or even understand monetary views…

I grew up, understood the function of money and started going up the corporate ladder so to speak, but the most important lesson I got to learn about money was very recently.

By the time I was around the age of 29 or 30 I read somewhere that money is a form of evaluation that society has agreed upon where you give your talent and get paid by how much "value" I feel about your job… my car breaks down, I go to a mechanic… he sacrificed time to learn about cars, I did not… now, he "knows" what to do while I do not… he then fixes my car. I appreciate this a lot!!! So, I show him my appreciation by giving him the amount of appreciation we agreed upon. That is how money actually works…  I can hug him too as appreciation, but he might not accept that as a form of payment 😊

When I realized that I finally understood why some people get a lot of money and why some do not…. This all made perfect sense.

As time went by I climbed up the ladder, sacrificed more and more of my time, my abilities, my sanity, my health…. But I got paid more and more…

At some point I became a farmer. I thought: "what is the best form of appreciation? I will grow food for people! Then, the money I make comes from the highest form of appreciation! I grow food for them, they pay me money as a form of their appreciation!" it all seemed perfect.

After a few years I realized that mono-culture farming (which I was a part of by managing the community's farm) is killing this earth, destroying the humans that live on it and all of nature. This method of farming is a big lie and we are all the victims of it. I decided to let that go and quit my job. After 18 years of climbing the ladder to success, I was out.

Now, a prayer wheel maker, I feel that I have finally found my place in the "monetary" world of money and value. I finally use my talent, my time and effort to create something that has value in the eyes of some and they wish to pay me their appreciation by giving me money… now this all makes sense and I can live my life by doing something beneficial to this world and beyond…

I was extremely fortunate to meet H.E. Garchen Rinpoche in this life back in November of 2008 and since then my life has never been the same.

Thank you all for your support in our prayer wheel project, it is making this world (and many more worlds) a better place to live in, and by doing that, we get to buy food and shelter in this one 😊  

Saturday, July 20, 2019

a very special prayer wheel for Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche

once in a while something amazing happens.. something that can not be explained by my logic or my common sense... i am always amazed when such things happens... what amazing karma!
i must say that truly, i have no way to explain such happenings other than very good karma from past lives.. no other way to explain it :)

a close and good friend was about to go to Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche's Odiyan center for a 6 months stay and practice. a few months before he was planning to go he asked us to craft a very special prayer wheel that was to be offered to Rinpoche. of course we were so honored and humbled that such a request has arrived at our door step! holy moly....
but, we felt confident that we can produce such a prayer wheel and hoped that Rinpoche (who is a master prayer wheel maker and an advocate of prayer wheels) would like it...
so we set up to craft it. our friends request was of Ayelet to do her magic with the pyrography pen and to create the art on the prayer wheel using drawings from Rinpoche's many books. and so she did not sleep for a few days but made it! her gifted hands made this masterpiece come to life :)
inside, our fried requested the prayer wheel to have: the Mani mantra, the Vajra Guru mantra, the 7-line prayer and the Vajrasattva mantra, the Lord's prayer from the Christian faith, the Shir Lamaalot from the Jewish faith, the Surat El Fatiha from the Muslim faith, a special blessing poem from the Jewish faith and the Lakota people prayer knots for world peace. wow! what a compassion bomb! amazing....
we did as requested and the prayer wheel was made and ready for the picking up and traveling :)
came our stunning!!!
our friend left and traveled to the Odiyan center.
after about a week or so he sent us a most overwhelming message. the prayer wheel was offered to Rinpoche and he loved it! he was so happy that such a prayer wheel has been constructed for world peace and in Israel! what joy!
what an honor.... thank you dear brother for giving us this opportunity to be a part of something so amazing! we are in your debt :)

here are some photos of it and a short clip of it spinning (in my hand)





Sunday, July 7, 2019

Life of a prayer wheel maker in 2019…


I am often asked: "can you make a living from crafting prayer wheels?"
The answer is a bit complex, but in the big picture, yes. You can make a living from crafting prayer wheels.
As I break down this YES answer into little answers, you can understand what I meant by complex answer…
We live our lives each day doing something for money and we call that thing "work". We work for money… sometimes for someone else being a hired hand, and sometimes for ourselves, being a "business owners"… but all the same, we all work for money so we can live our lives… this is pretty simple and easy to understand.
I have done SOOOOOOOO many different jobs in my life… so many, that if I try to make a list, it will be too long… very interesting, but long!
Taking into consideration why we get paid for what we do, we start to understand how it all works… we do something for someone and they value our doing it by giving us money… that is how they show their appreciation for what it is we did for them… thus, getting paid… simple 😊
So, over the years I got paid different amounts by the value I gave back to society… my last "day job" was an agriculture farm manager. This required most of my time and mind space and there was little to no time for anything else… I needed to grow the best crops, fight to get paid good money for them in the market and make sure I do not spend more money than I made… boss like style  😊
After a few years of doing this I had an epiphany! Time is running out! 
My older brother got sick, a good friend of mine died of cancer and another good friend got the news of cancer… that got me thinking… life is ending. Time is running out… what do I want to do in the time I have left? Do I want to be a farmer? Do I want to be a factory production manager? Do I want to work for someone else? Or do I want to do something I believe in and find to be right livelihood?   Like a prayer wheel maker…?

The answer is clear: a prayer wheel maker.

But, as time moves on forward since that choice has been made and I have quit all my "day time" jobs, it is a continues straggle to make money to live... Israel is an expansive country to live in and expanses are high... material cost is very high and the most expansive thing we have in our studio is our time… if we take the cost of our lives and spread it over a month we find out how much money we must earn per hour…
We do what we believe in. making prayer wheels. But we rely on the kindness of strangers and if they like what we do…
We want to craft prayer wheels as long as we can so we can spread love and kindness to all beings in all realms, but that will only work if our artwork will be sold…
So, we hope for the best!
We want to thank you all for your support, through your kindness we can do what we love and what we find to be the best livelihood 

may it all work out and we can continue to craft prayer wheels! (but if not, there is always a 9 to 17 job out there)

lots of love,
Micha & Ayelet

Monday, May 20, 2019

Drupon Tsering Rinpoche's visit to Israel May 2019

Drupon Tsering Rinpoche is H.E. Garchen Rinpoche's representative and in charge of all of Garchen Rinpoche's activities and centers in Europe.
he was asked by Garchen Rinpoche to come to Israel once a year to give teachings and has been doing so since 2011.
every year, he asks to come and see us and spend time with us and we do this gladly! what an honor!!

this year he came for 5 days out of which we got to spend 2 with him.
he came to our Kibbutz on Wednesday to give an open talk to the public about the 4 mind changing thoughts toward the Dharma and about 50 people attended! it was a full house!
but when he arrived we took him to dinner in our communal dinning room and we ate on the porch. we had a gust of honor, Flerken the cat :)



later after the nice meal with Drupon and friends we went to the teaching hall which is a small sitting theater for classical music which was build many many years ago, but we have transformed it to host the teachings.


the cat came with us to the teachings and attended the whole teaching! although he slept through some of it :)

when the teaching was over, we took Rinpoche to his guest room and he slept the night.
in the morning we took him to eat breakfast in our prayer wheel studio and invited my mom and some friends to eat with us. Drupon insisted.... :)


we sat and talked for a while about Kibbutz life and how we live our lives as a community and he said it is like a Tibetan village... one big family!
after breakfast we took him for a tour around the Kibbutz. my mom took him for a ride in her electric scooter...





the first stop was the small zoo we have for the children where they are taught how to care for animals.















after the zoo visit we took Rinpoche to get a massage. again, my mom took him for a ride :)
 he got to meet people and talked to them on the way...


 
after his massage we took him to a very nice restaurant to have lunch. as we were driving Rinpoche asked: "where are we going?"  to a restaurant to have lunch we said... "is the dinning room closed?" no we said, why? "i like eating there... restaurants are very privet. you sit alone at the table... in the dinning room it is like eating with your family, people come and sit with you. plus i like the food, very tasty!"
oh, OK.... we learned something for your next visit! ha!
after lunch we took him back to the studio to rest for a while :)
then when it was time for dinner Rinpoche asked us to call our niece Eden to eat with us and so we did! Rinpoche gave her a nice shirt as a gift and she loved it!

  
after dinner we took Rinpoche to his next engagement and parted... :(
but, we are very fortunate to have him visit us and stay for a day! thank you Rinpoche for your kindness!
we miss you already :(