Abode Village View – Week of 10/16
“The same light which is fire on earth and the sun in the sky, is God in heaven.” – Hazrat Inayat Khan
The past weeks have been a whirl of energy, activity, and generosity.
The Abode Summer Appeal concluded last week, coinciding with the culmination of our 2nd annual Abode Weekend community celebration.
We were grateful to those who participated in our tours, the discussions of vision, plans and initiatives, the community activities, and Saturday’s appreciation dinner.
We are also very grateful to all those who gave during our Summer Appeal. As of the middle of last week, we had raised in excess of $53,000 in funds for the Abode through donations, pledges and matching grants.
While we fell short of our $100,000 goal, we expect more will be offered and pledged in the days to follow. We are only part-way through the transition to a sustainable future as an independent entity, and our success is not yet assured. Donations are critical source of funds for us, as with all non-profit religious organizations like us. We appreciate every gift we have received.
Planting the seeds of renewal
During our community discussions, after reviewing the many accomplishments of the past year, we provided a vision for the future and a tangible demonstration of how we are investing in that future.
To quote Pir Zia: “Mohammed said: ‘Even if you expect the world’s end tomorrow, plant a tree today.”
We are moving quickly to plant the seeds that will grow into the structures that will sustain the Abode well into the future. As events have continually reminded us, there is a great need for a spiritual sanctuary that offers a place to retreat in nature from the turbulence of modern life.
Critical to our success will be our ability to bring people to the Abode more often, and to provide them with better services, more activities, and meaningful opportunities to connect both with themselves and with others.
To do this, we will be actively seeking to build greater connections with an expanded network of those aligned with our values. As Pir Vilayat said about the Abode: “We wish to be self-supporting, encourage incentive to prosper by one’s own work and skill and creativity while sharing and accommodating.”
We plan to bring teachers, speakers, partners and programs that can offer a diversity of experiences and ideas to the Abode, our residents and our guests in harmony with our Eco-Sufi orientation.
Updating our infrastructure
We also plan to invest in our infrastructure to create more flexible facilities and accommodations. These initiatives include:
- Moving the locus of welcoming visitors from Vakil and the Abode Road 1 courtyard to the area around the Barn. This will provide a more accessible and focused experience for arriving guests, place it closer to guest parking and the mountain camp, and enable us to revivify and cut down traffic in the area around the courtyard and Quddus.
We will have space in the Barn to allow us to move our guest services department, expand the Abode store, build a Welcome and Heritage Center, and, in time, provide space for a community healing and wellness center.
- Creating a café and community space in Sherdyl Manzil. We will be rehabilitating this space to offer residents, community and guests a “third space” in which to relax, hold group activities (music, art, readings), or simply sip and nosh outside of the dining hours available in Razzaq.
- Utilizing Inayat Manzil as a small group retreat and study center. The Abode purchased Inayat Manzil from the Inayati Order this spring, and we plan to honor the space by offering it to teachers and small groups as a retreat facility. We are also examining setting aside space for a library, archives and study center.
Creating a more active and accommodating retreat capability at the Abode is critical to our sustainability. Simply put, we need to generate more retreats held throughout the year to provide balance to our now highly seasonal activities. We will be investing in building and promoting our ability to host and serve individual and group retreats – both guided and unguided.
Expanding the Abode Board
The Abode Board is inviting nominations to fill two new Board seats, to expand the diversity of skills and experience to help govern the Abode. One seat will be for a Local Representative and one for a member of the community at large.
Nominations will remain open until the seats are filled. The process, criteria and application can be found on our website at this link: www.theabode.org/board
Razzaq has been repainted and adds to the beauty of our autumn color. It also stands, lit against the longer, darkening days of fall as a warm, inviting place of refuge and reminder of all we have accomplished, and what we will accomplish in the seasons ahead, together, as a community.
Thank you for your love and support as we move forward.
Fall greetings to each of you!
Since my last note in the Village View over a month ago, so much has happened!
Our OSHO guests returned, the staff had a day away at CampHill Village in Copake, and we had an amazing return visit from Sufi Qawwali group, Fanna-fi-Allah! Thereafter, Aziz Kommel returned to lead Rosh Hashanah and our friends Onaje and Fatima led a fantastic Healer’s Retreat, which included an amazing dialogue between Pir Zia Inayat-Khan and renowned jazz musician, Dr. Randy Weston. MacArthur fellow and soil expert David Montgomery got down and dirty with Evan Thaler-Null of the Abode Farm CSA and students from Harvard Divinity School joined the Abode for a quest into alternative American spiritualities. And most recently, we were blessed to have a sweet, autumnal celebration of all things Abodian during Abode Weekend. Thank you to all who joined us for these events.
This weekend we are hosting Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.) and the week to come has a New Moon Women’s Circle on Wednesday and Dances of Universal Peace on their new day – the third Sunday of each month.
Registration is OPEN for “The Soul’s Journey” Retreat with Naima Khabira Brown and special guest, Aziza Scott, who will co-lead this retreat. Register here.
The Abode will also have the annual Thanksgiving Feast so save the date – more details to come!
The Programs Office now has two new astounding members of the team – SaMoon Pal and Topaz Ross Kelso. SaMoon ([email protected]) rejoins staff as Mountain Programs Coordinator and Topaz ([email protected]), a student of Mountain Road School, returns to the Abode as Programs and Marketing Coordinator. These two will be strong resources for on-going growth of the Abode, inviting friends new and returning to share time at the Abode and invest in building something beautiful. Welcome, SaMoon and Topaz!
2018 is shaping up to be a pretty magnificent year with the return of many beloved teachers, with more music returning to campus, with more movement and dance, as well as deep spirituality. Keep you eyes to these Village View e-mails for announcements, registration openings, and advancements of all kinds! And please plan on showing up because we can’t do this without you!
Wings out, hearts up!
Abode Director of Programs
Upcoming Week’s Events
Tuesday, October 10
– 6:00pm Community Dinner – Razzaq (Rezak) Dining Room
Wednesday, October 11
– 7:00pm Healing Class and Circle with Nizam Ash – Abode Library in Razzaq
Thursday, October 12
– 6:00pm Community Dinner – Razzaq (Rezak) Dining Room
– 7:00pm Message Class – Quddus (Meditation Hall)
Sunday, October 15
– 11:00am Universal Worship – Quddus (Meditation Hall)
– 12:30pm Sunday Brunch – Razzaq (Rezak) Dining Room
October 18 Wild Woman Project New Moon Circle – October with Amanda Salima McCall
October 22 Dances of Universal Peace
October 27-29 Abode Village Visit
October 29 Dancing the Goddess: Monthly Tara Circle with Aimée Brodeur Johnson
November 10-12 The Soul’s Journey Retreat with Naima Khabira Brown and Aziza Scott
Top photo by White Light Exposure