The Gyuto Monks practice Tibetan Buddhism, and as such are concerned and compassionately engaged in what is happening in the world around them as part of their powerful spiritual practice. They live in exile in India. WAF were contacted by their representative since the monks felt that they would like to meet and find out more of the facts about what is happening here.
On Saturday 9th, the monks struggled through the snow to reach Woodsetts and conduct a "land puja ceremony". This is a traditional practice from ancient Tibet that honours and blesses the land and all inhabitants that live there. It removes dark and negative lower energies so that peace and harmony can be present and effectively reestablish themselves in the land and wider area. Following the land puja ceremony they performed a ceremony to bless those who are actively fighting the threat of fracking. Despite the cold and delays we had a great turnout. Everyone seemed to enjoy and be moved by the monks blessing and the chants based around throat singing, a deep harmonic overtone. This particular technique includes the lowest pitch possible with the human voice.
After the ceremony we presented the monks with a gift of a miners lamp which had originally been made in Sheffield before being used in a coal mine. This was to symbolise the history of fossil fuel in the area that we hope to leave behind, and to shine a light on a brighter future. The monks reciprocated and gifted a white silk scarf, requesting that we tie this to the holly tree to commemorate the event as seen below.
Coverage of the event from both ITV Calendar and BBC can be seen via these links.