Monday, October 28, 2013

Kathina Ceremony at BC Temple & An explanation of the Buddhist Annual Ritual

Today i had the rare chance of being part of a Katina ceremony. I've heard a lot about this and even studied about it in Dhamma school but never had a chance to take part. To be honest if i was in Sri Lanka i would never have got this close to the ceremony unless my family was the Katina ceremony host family which would have been really unlikely. Technically Katina ceremony is the end of 3 months "wus" period for monks.

The origin story of Kathina ceremony

In Lord Buddhas times(about 2500 years ago in Northern India/Nepal) monks were supposed to go from home to home, from city to city, from village to village promoting the truth - Lord Buddha found. (The truth in another blog post maybe :D) But they noticed that when monks walk from place to place during the rainy season - small warms & creatures die by monks stamping on them. Buddhists are very strict about not harming any kind of living creatures and this was brought to Lord Buddhas notice.

He gave the solution of what we call today as "wus" season where the monks are supposed to stay in one place (A temple) during the rainy season and preach Dhamma (Knowledge) to the people in the area. The devotees are supposed to look after the monks, not letting them walk out by stocking food.etc.

The Kathina Ceremony

What happens in the actual ceremony is the celebration of the end of "wus" season. Where maha sanga (monks) are gifted with katina robe, a special robe made from one day and one night. We got the chance of sewing the robe.

They say gifting this robe can give you lot of positive Karma. Below is a photo of Sirinivasa thero putting on the robe gifted to him at the ceremony.

Kathina Ceremony at the Surrey/Vancouver Temple in BC,Canada

Thanks to Chethiya ayya & Dilini akka we got the chance of participating in it. And it was the first time i actually took part in the ceremony.

The ceremony didn't coincide the seasons in Canada - heard it's because the rainy/or the winter season here might make it difficult for anyone to come to the temple. Hence the "wus" season here is the same as the season in Sri Lanka. all in all it was a good experience.

Best thing was meeting a lot of Sri Lankans in one place after coming here. Place was packed and met really cool people. Some i have heard but never met - what a small world! Below are some more photos!

I don't know the exact names of monks involved in the origin story. If you know the story in a more specific manner - comment below! 

Translink - Vancouver skytrain breakdown 2013 October

Little too late to blog - But though i'd give my 2 cents on this.

Vancouvers metro system - translink Skytrain system broke down after a small maintainance error (According to the official statements). I was on my way to work on Millenium line train while the problem was on the expo line. But somehow even Millenium line trains were delayed and there was too much crowd on our side of the platform because expo line was disrupted. Below are few pics

translink vancouver skytrain delay

translink vancouver skytrain delay 2

translink vancouver skytrain delay 3

Translink actually had a shuttle service between disrupted stations. Even i saw a special bus from Millenium line end - VCC clarke to Main station.

but we felt a little dissappointed since we were not given valuable alternatives in our specific stations. I was told to take a bus to coquitlam and then take the downtown bus (which is like taking a 2 hour route to a place where i can go in 30 mins). Many complained on social media but i think we should appreciate what we have.

I think this way probably because i have been in worse situations. Have you experienced how the transport systems work in developing countries? In many, trains don't arrive on schedule at all. They are totally crowded like the famous photo below.

So i would forgive Translink for the breakdown & hope they will have better contingency plans next time. What do you think? Feel free to reply by commenting below...

Friday, October 11, 2013

Funny tweets during #RogersOutage October 2013

Wanted to blog this - But been busy, i mean Goodbusy (wink - VISA credit card ad)

So Rogers network went down nationwide in Canada for few hours day before yesterday. I'm on one of the networks and luckily got to know this through twitter and emailed friends who might have tried to contact me...

Below are the funny tweets during #Rogersoutage

1. This is what A&W tweeted - Never happens in South Asia where comparative advertising is not allowed. And even on Social media - companies maintain good ethics not to diss competitors/other brands openly.

And the tweet was promoted - Good content marketing!

2. This tweet was retweeted many times. First i didn't know what it was saying.

Until +Binku T. enlightened me with a link to this video - Rogers "Canada's most reliable wireless network"

3. The most hilarious news today in papers was that twitter profile holder for @Rogers from Brooklyn, NY had been getting a lot of complaint tweets. His tweet about receiving all complaints -

And yesterday he had tweeted a wish to all Canadians - A reply suggests to sell his Twitter handled to Rogers Network for a large sum (Perfect early retirement plan?)

 Canadians are famous for saying sorry. Here's one of the funniest "sorry Rogers" tweets
4. Few good things happens when you go offline. Roommates since August have their first face to face conversation when Rogers & Fido went offline.

Any other funny tweets during the #RogersOutage ? Feel free to comment below with links...

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

My creative resume for #Hoothire

During my job hunting came across some really interesting openings at Hootsuite and saw this tweet in my #hiring local search stream in Hootsuite. Her bio said she is VP-Talent at Hootsuite.
Replied to see if they are having it any sooner because i was in the hunt.
And "kaboom" a million tweets went about the #Hoothire to happen on 8th Oct...And @hambrody confirmed the news.

So everyone in Vancouver is going crazy over #Hoothire saw like a million tweets, read on Huffpost online, read on the paper in "The province" and it was even on TV today!

I like to do things differently. Here's the creative version of my resume for #hoothire in old FB profile page theme! (Sorry about the inappropriate size - wanted it in a readable size - will make it smaller after #Hoothire

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Timely content marketing - Red Bull US Govt shutdown tweet

Having worked with Red Bull for more than 2 years, they never faily to amuse me with the best content marketing. This is what Red Bull tweeted after hearing about the US govt shut down. 

Its simple, precise and delivers their core message. Additionally it helps achieve their target of highlighting non-sports use of the drink. Good stuff Red Bull!