We extend our kind welcome to Emaho Center. We want you to feel welcome and comfortable.
There are things we do in the temple and in the center that may be new to you.
We take off our shoes as a sign of respect. The floors can be cold. You are welcome to wear socks or bring slippers.
You may see people doing prostrations prior to and after teachings or meditations. The gesture expresses the intention to try and follow The Three Jewels - Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. The gesture also symbolizes discarding the three Poisons - hatred, ignorance and greed. The posture symbolizes letting go of our ego and expresses our admiration for the teachings of Buddha and respect for all sentient beings. Prostrations are generally done three times. This practice readies our mind for receiving the teachings and helps strengthen our meditations. The respect towards which we prostrate is our own future Buddha; ourself as an enlightened being, having reached ultimate happiness. As we open, we make space for a rich spiritual practice.
There is a lot of information about how one sits in meditation or how to respectfully sit during a teaching. Above all else, ZaChoeje Rinpoche, our spiritual teacher, wants everyone to be comfortable. When we're comfortable our hearts and minds open. If you need to move, please do. If you are more comfortable standing or sitting in an arm chair you are welcome to sit in the community room where teachings and meditations are shown simultaneously on the large screen.
Dharma materials, puja texts, teaching materials and dharma books, out of respect for the teachings, should be kept off the floor, off of places where people sit and please do not step over these. These can be placed on a cloth we provide, or you can bring a cloth or cushion from home.
Pointing the bottom of your feet toward the altar or teacher in Tibetan Buddhist culture is regarded as disrespectful.
It is considered disrespectful to place the bottom of your feet on a meditation cushion. If you need to elevate your feet, please bring a cushion from home.
You are invited to bring offerings of fruit and flowers if you wish. We have vases, bowls and plates at the center.
His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama requests when we have community pots lucks, or serve food to the community that we share vegetarian dishes. At other times, for example bringing your lunch to eat between classes, you do not need to maintain a vegetarian diet.
If you are bringing a pet to the center, out of respect for others, they must be on leash at all times. If you take your pet into the temple bring a blanket for your pet to sit on. Please keep your pet off meditations cushions, and clean up after your pet, both inside and out.
If you have any questions, please never hesitate to ask.