no posts for a while, internet connection has been spotty. i came into kathmandu to stay for a few days at a monastery populated by newars in a newari neighborhood in patan (Okubahal), and have been making some useful observations and getting a lot of good secondary info out of the library there.
older brother chris comes in two days. i'm going to bring him up to the village chapagaon to stay with me a few days, to sleep and check out little farms and ride around the countryside. a good introduction.
i started translating phadampa sangye's biography, although i haven't really looked at any tibetan the last three days as i've been staying with the newars at the padmavarna mahayan vihar. there is one old newari lama there, 93 years old, and i have been able to chill with him in the mornings a bit. he just kicks it reciting prayers and mantras under his breath all the time, blessing some things, talking to people, walking in the sunshine at times. he's got some real accomplishment i can feel (the only way to really know that), and advised me to continue practicing, surely i will have some accomplishment (ngonshe) as well.
i also read a bit out of a small biography of dilgo khyentse rinpoche last night which made me cry. he spent almost all of his teens and early twenties in retreat sitting in the woods in a meditation box praying and meditating all the time. at twenty three he was ready to go into life retreat! he didn't for the sake of us, though. his mere picture brings a peircing feeling to my heart. gyab su chi!
will post more with pictures next week when i get a better connection. i have many photos now to share!