An Auspicious Weekend In October – 60th Birthday Celebration

by Bhikkhuni Seri

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni, Ayya Seri Bhikkhuni at the start of Ayya Vayama’s 60th Birthday Celebration on Sunday afternoon, 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Ming.

Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage put on a Birthday Celebration to honour Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s sixtieth birthday on Sunday, 28th October 2012. This was Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s actual birth date. The celebration started in the afternoon at 2pm. In spite of Ayya Vayama’s ill health and the limitation of space at a private premises, we managed to squeeze in 75 people for the celebration.

Joy and happiness at Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s 60th Birthday Celebration on 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Zor

It was a hot and cloudy day with no showers forecast. However, suddenly, before the start of the celebration, there was a sprinkle of rain. It was like a heavenly blessing, to celebrate Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s 60th Birthday.

Ayya Vayama’s 60th Bithday Celebration on 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Manora.

The Birthday Celebration was an invitation-only event at a private residence with ABSOLUTELY no alcohol. The Hermitage even invited our neighbours, two off-duty policewomen to preside over the celebration to ensure order and security! However, Subha, the wandering cat, still managed to gatecrash the celebration, even though she found herself two hours late. Subha, the cat, was jealous of Billy, the poodle, who managed to get an invitation to the celebration!

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni at her 60th Birthday Celebration on Sunday, 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Zor

The Birthday Celebration started with the chanting of  the ‘Metta Sutta – The Buddha’s words on Lovingkindness’ to offer lovingkindness and good wishes to Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni for her 60th birthday. All of us present sat in silence for a few minutes and sent our good wishes, appreciation, gratitude and lovingkindness to Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni.

The official launch of Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s book ‘TAKING REFUGE’ to mark her 60th birthday on Sunday afternoon, 28th October 2012. Photo by Prem.

The highlight of the Birthday Celebration was the launch of Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s first Dhamma book, ‘TAKING REFUGE’. It was the first free distribution book published by Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage Incorporated. This was a beautiful gift of Dhamma by Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni who chose and edited  three of the more than sixty Dhamma talks that she offered at Dhammaloka Buddhist Centre. The gift of Dhamma, ‘TAKING REFUGE’, was generously sponsored and supported by devoted lay supporters and Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage Incorporated to mark Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni 60th birthday.

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s first free distribution book, ‘Taking Refuge’, published by Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage Incorporated,  on Sunday, 28th October 2012. Photo by Zor.

After the official launch of the free distribution book, ‘TAKING REFUGE’ , the special birthday cake, beautifully decorated with the Western Australia wild flower, ‘Hibbertia – yellow buttercup’, was presented to Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni. There were also SIXTY yellow roses offered by family and supporters to celebrate the 60th birthday. Peace and Billy led the birthday cheers before Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni blew out the candles:-

‘The complete release of my mind was like the quenching of the lamp’, by Arahat Bhikkhuni Patacara.

As the flames flickered and went out, we all sincerely wished in our heart that Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni would attain her goal, Nibbana, in this very life. 

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni and the beautifully decorated and delicious birthday cake on Sunday afternoon, 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Manora.

After the formal Birthday Celebration, the party broke into a relaxed, harmonious and joyous gathering of people with refreshments and birthday cakes. All those who were present came up to wish Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni ‘Happy Birthday’, and personally expressed their heartfelt appreciation and gratitude. Cousin Karina and Aunty Shirley gave Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni a big hug and kisses. They said they could do it differently because they are family!  

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni cut the birthday cake on Sunday afternoon, 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Zor.

The celebration finished at around 4.00pm. The Cleaning and Tidying up Taskforce worked very hard and was superbly efficient. Much merit to all of you who gave us a helping hand. By 9.30pm, the sala, marquee and the garage were empty of bodies, voices and celebration. Everything was almost back to normal.

Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni, Ayya Seri Bhikkhuni and Dr Ping Wang, Ayya Vayama Bhikkhuni’s Chinese Medicine Doctor at the Birthday Celebration on Sunday, 28th October 2012 at Patacara Bhikkhuni Hermitage. Photo by Zor.

Once again silence fell upon the Hermitage. The moon was still glowing in the darkness of the sky. All that was left were good wishes, lovingkindness and peace.

I am signing off this last post of ‘An Auspicious Weekend In October’  here and now. May all of you be well, happy, at peace and at ease.

Evam.

This entry was posted in Events, Year 2012 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.