The story of Thomas Merton and the 14th Dalai Lama's friendship is brief yet powerful. A humble Gesthemeni monk travels to Asia with a quest for broadening his understanding of spirituality. Over three meetings, these two significant humans from different sides of the world and different spiritual backgrounds, forged a deep friendship based on openness and understanding that is honored by the Dalai Lama to this day.
It is with this spirit and love that Compassion Park is being built. As a touch stone for all humanity, Compassion Park will offer a peaceful sphere of harmony.
At the center of the park, the stupa, (an Asian monument), will be the vessel for containing a Tibetan mandala of Compassion, items from compassionate people from around the world, and thousands of wishes for wellbeing and peace.
Surrounding this monument will be a landscaped, meditative walking path with areas for sitting and contemplation. Plans are for the space to have a hotspot which will offer a direct connection to a guided secular mindfulness meditation as well as readings and quotes from both Thomas Merton and the Dalai Lama.
Compassion Park will offer an oasis of peace, beauty and nature in the midsts of an urban landscape. The first declared "Compassionate University" in the world, Spalding University has generously donated space on the University's campus, now dedicated specifically for this purpose.
Compassion Park will be funded solely by private donations. 100% of all donations will be applied directly to the construction and endowment of the park.
Our wish is to have the park under construction by May of 2015, in honor of
Thomas Merton's 100th birthday.
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