This morning I spent time meditating at the Quang Chieu Zen Monastery and attending the Dharma class they hold in English on Saturday mornings. A rich experience in so many ways. Kindness and compassion from the nuns so very tangible.
As I strolled around the gardens, I noticed that buds were on all the trees and bushes, much too early I thought, then upon close inspection I saw that each blossom was a silk one, lovingly tied on by hand, beautiful ! I asked the nun about them and she said the lay people come and do that for them, so there is always beauty to see, even before the real buds come in spring. Now it is nearing the time when each silk flower will have to be removed with the same loving care as when they were tied on. Despite the cold winter air, it felt so springlike, and so beautiful.