Throughout this coronavirus pandemic, we cannot meet in person as before, so I have tried to practice Dharma and reach my students and friends through the medium of technology and social media in order to stay connected. Because I grew up in Tibet and am a simple monk, I don’t know too much about modern technology and sometimes encounter difficulties making it work.
My old friend, Michael Martinez, has helped me every Wednesday night for live streaming of teachings and has done a really amazing job. I’ve known Michael for more than 10 years and we met when I first came to Pacific Grove, and he has been my very good friend for a long time. He has made the live streamed teachings very special. He set up three cameras in different places in the Dharma Center which he controls with his finger using an iPad so he can show different angles of the center and of me during the teaching. It’s complicated and I really don’t know how he does it. Even last Wednesday, he played the piano beautifully during live prayers as he is a very talented pianist. He spends a lot of time planning with me and dealing with challenges like issues with the internet, devices, etc. We don’t have the special equipment needed for these complex arrangements at the Dharma Center, so he brings all of his studio to the MDC an hour or more beforehand and sets up everything. He must go back and forth to the Dharma Center, and has to carry and take down many things.
This is a lot of work, and I just want to say to my very good friend, Michael Martinez, thank you so much for your help. I say this from me and on behalf of my Sangha. I want to convey to the Sangha that it requires much effort to organize the teachings and Michael has been very helpful in this endeavor. I think that this work benefits people who can practice Dharma together with me at a time when we are more isolated than before. I think that now when people stay inside and don’t know what to do, we can show live teachings and prayers, can practice Dharma, and I am able to send my love and compassion to all the world through these different channels. I hope that people enjoy the teachings and I think that it is better than watching television for our body, speech, and mind. Thank you again Michael for making this possible, and to all my students, I hope that you enjoy the live practices and hope that you can participate.
Khenpo Karten Rinpoche