Inside the Buddhist Centre in Fietas

Meditating at the Buddhist Centre in Fietas

I’ve been in the U.S. for the past three weeks dealing with very frustrating South African visa problems. I’ve been ridiculously stressed. Then yesterday, in the middle of my most recent meltdown, I remembered my recent visit to the Lam Rim Buddhist Centre and instantly felt calmer.

Inside the beautiful shrine room at the Lam Rim Buddhist Centre in Fietas.

The Lam Rim Buddhist Centre is in Fietas (also known as Vrededorp) — a historically non-white suburb in Joburg that experienced forced removals and virtual destruction during apartheid. The building used to be an Afrikaans Dutch Reformed church.

It’s not a place where one would expect to find an octagonal-shaped shrine to Buddha painted in every color of the rainbow. But there it is.

Outside the Lam Rim Centre.
You can see the Cape Dutch influence in this part of the building.
The garden.
Closeup of the shrine with photos of the Dalai Lama.

This is a rough neighborhood and the centre backs up to an informal settlement. But it’s so peaceful there, inside and out. The garden is simple but pretty and there’s a little koppie, or hill, behind the building where the residents of the centre go to have tea.

Marie-Lais on the koppie.

Marie-Lais and I visited on a Thursday evening and met Shayna, who lives at the centre, and Neil, who leads meditation classes there each Thursday at 7:00 p.m.

I mostly took photos but tried to meditate a little between shots. I’d like to go back soon to learn about meditation for real. I think I need it.

Evening meditation.

This is all I have time to say about the Buddhist Centre because I’m getting on a plane back to Joburg.

And speaking of which, my book is published! If you live in Joburg, please come to the launch of The 2Summers #Gauteng52 Challenge this Thursday at 6:00 p.m. at Bridge Books in Maboneng. See you soon.

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  • Reply eremophila December 9, 2018 at 11:00 pm

    Best wishes for calm.👍

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 12:04 am

      Thanks 🙂

  • Reply catji December 9, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Lovely, and interesting.
    The visa thing :-/ My sympathies. :-/

    You think you need it? 🙂 hahahahhah :-)) Did you ever do any yoga? it goes together.

  • Reply autumnashbough December 10, 2018 at 1:08 am

    I’ve had two bureaucratic nightmares in different areas this week. You have my sympathies.

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 1:13 am

      Ahhhhhh, I’m sorry for you too.

  • Reply Peggy Laws December 10, 2018 at 6:51 am

    This “Visa” story is something else – very stressful. See you Thursday!!

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 6:41 pm

      Hahaha, yeah tell me about it!

  • Reply Phileen December 10, 2018 at 8:57 am

    The Centre is so colourful and full of interesting things, yet . . . just by looking at your photos it brought satisfaction and peace to me. I could take a deep breath and it almost felt like I was inhaling the photos. Thank you!

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 6:41 pm

      Thanks! It really is so beautiful.

  • Reply tomatom December 10, 2018 at 10:35 am

    I’ll join in with the Visa sympathies. 13 and a bit months ago I applied for permanent residency and told it would take 10-12 months. Now they say it could be up to 2 years! However, I’ve escalated to find out wha’s going on. Fingers crossed fo everyone here.

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 6:42 pm

      It just keeps getting harder and harder 😥

  • Reply Lani December 10, 2018 at 1:55 pm

    I’ve never heard you complain about SA visa problems, so you’ve piqued my curiosity. Visa issues just seem to be normal at this point. But I still go CRAZY, of course. I’m assuming all turned out well if you’re heading back.

    The Buddhist temple looks great. I love all the bright colors. Safe travels, xo

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 6:44 pm

      It’s so ridiculous in SA, you wouldn’t believe it. My problem is far from solved unfortunately – I just have a quick temporary fix 😞

      • Reply Lani December 11, 2018 at 5:28 am

        I don’t know, Thailand’s pretty ridiculous, too. We’ll have to compare notes some time 😉 over wine or beer, of course!

        • Reply 2summers December 11, 2018 at 5:34 am

          That would be so great 😍

  • Reply Tenney Mason December 10, 2018 at 8:14 pm

    It’s not my style; but maybe a little meditation might be helpful.

    • Reply 2summers December 10, 2018 at 8:28 pm

      Hahaha. Yes.

  • Reply Mark Ward March 10, 2019 at 2:13 am

    Beautiful room, the light from the arched window brings the colours in the room out. Looks like a tranquil spot for a meditative sitting

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