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Upaya Zen Center is a Zen Buddhist practice, service and training center. Joan Haliifax Roshi is the director and most amazing teacher. We entered in silence and found our meditation cusions. I allowed myself to simply follow the routine of the regular attendees of the special meditation and dharma talks. The chanting was new for me as I am used to the more musical chanting of Sanscrit, Gurumuki and Hebrew. I finally got "lost" in the sound which was a great lesson in letting go. Roshi spoke of the universality of our faith paths. This was so delightful to hear, especially here in Santa Fe as many Jews also have a Buddhist foundation in their meditation and daily practice. Roshi was recovering from an injury and I was invited to sing misheberach for her healing, and so those present could learn about the Jewish prayer for healing.


Our shul meets at St. Bede's church but I had never attended any of their services. The St. Bede's choir rehearses on Wednesday evenings as we have our ma'ariv service and teaching. So, entering the building was as if I were going to daven. Except, I turned to the left to their sanctuary for the Easter service. I loved the colors all around the sanctuary and the colorful robes of the clergy. I could feel the excitement and high energy of the congregation before the service began. Father Murphy spoke of the rising of peace in this world. At one point, the choir sang Psalm 121, Esa Eanai! I personally missed the congregation being able to join in more as we see in renewal shuls. Most simply sat and listened to the choir. However, it felt good to simply honor their tradition and path and connect to words of peace offered by the clergy.