This workshop is a two day process, which will draw from Pancha Tanmantra (a West Javanese energetic practice). It involves two 90 minute workshops (one at the beginning and one at the end of the festival). It is only possible to do the second workshop if you have already attended the first. If you would like to experience this process, it is strongly recommended you contact WeiZen Ho via email prior to the festival at least 7 days before attending. (Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org)
Day 1: We will learn to recite the Varjasattva mantra as a group. This is a 100-syllable mantra and which will be used as a vehicle to cleanse our intention in preparation for Day 2. The purpose of this mantra is to offer clarity. It is a great foundation to set any ritual 'space’.
Within Day 1, we will also play with some 5-Element integrated vocal-movement practice.
Day 2: We will then move on to facilitate individuals who wish to encounter the energies of a deceased or living family member, friend or lover. Time may permit only one encounter per individual. If you do not wish actively to undergo the process of encountering the energies of the deceased, it is possible to act as a witness and supporter in the circle. This in itself is a very important role.
oṃ va jra sa ttva sa ma yam a nu
pā la ya va jra sa ttva tve no pa
ti ṣṭha dṛ ḍho me bha va su to ṣyo
me bha va su po ṣyo me bha va a
nu ra kto me bha va sa rva si ddhiṃ
me pra ya ccha sa rva ka rma su ca
me ci ttaṃ śre yaḥ ku ru hūṃ ha ha
ha ha hoḥ bha ga van sa rva ta thā
ga ta va jra mā me mu ñca va jrī
bha va ma hā sa ma ya sa ttva aḥ
Oṃ. Vajrasattva, keep your samaya. As Vajrasattva, remain near me. Be steadfast towards me. Be very pleased with me. Be completely satisfied with me. Be loving to me. Grant me all accomplishments. In all actions, make me mind pure and virtuous. Hūṃ. Ha ha ha ha hoḥ. O Blessed One, Vajra-nature of all the Tathāgatas, do not abandon me. Be of vajra-nature, O great Samaya-being, āḥ.
oṃ vajrasattva samayam anupālaya
dṛḍho me bhava sutoṣyo me bhava
supoṣyo me bhava anurakto me bhava
sarvasiddhiṃ me prayaccha
sarvakarmasu ca me cittaṃ
śreyaḥ kuru hūṃ ha ha ha ha hoḥ
bhagavan sarvatathāgatavajra mā me muñca
vajrī bhava mahāsamayasattva āḥ
Vajrasattva is pure white in colour and is sometimes known as the Prince of Purity. His name means "Adamantine Being", or more poetically "Embodying Reality". He is a member of the Vajra family of Akṣobhya which also includes Vajrapāṇi.
He is depicted as a young man in the prime of life, with all the silks and jewels of a wealthy prince. In his right hand he delicately balances a vajra at his heart. In his left had he holds a bell at his waist. The vajra represents Reality, and Compassion; while the bell represents Wisdom.
WeiZen Ho is a Performing Artist and Deviser who brings together phonic-vocals and movement. Her performances transform and extend mundane postures, sounds and everyday objects or speech into poetic prayer. She excavates linguistic processes searching out their connection to identity. Her work draws upon a lineage of Chinese immigrants who have lived for several generations in Melaka (Malaysia) and Java and extends it to her status as an Asian immigrant in Australia. She is fascinated by ritual, in particular the animistic rituals still practised by Chinese clans in her hometown and throughout South-East Asia. For her, ritual and imageries, distilled into performance locates her visceral vocal-body.
She is currently a recipient of Australia Council's Arts Project funding to study and develop Performances, Interpreted & Reimagined of Asian Animistic & Shamanistic Rituals (2016-2018). The research phases have taken place in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo in May 2016 and Hanoi, Vietnam in March 2017. She devised and performed in Platform 2017 by De Quincey Co and will perform and conduct workshops for the Festival of Death and Dying in Melbourne and Sydney. She collaborated as the sound, text and vocal designer for Joshua Pether in Monster at the Yirramboi Festival in Melbourne in May 2017. WeiZen was 1 out 4 artists in Body as Material: Solo Practice, a partnership between Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, Bundanon Trust, FORM Dance Projects and Critical Path. She was also invited to perform for the Asian Performing Arts Market Japan, part of Setouchi Triennale 2016.
A performance improvisation event WeiZen initiated in the Blue Mountains, now called Sound Bites Body, presented its twenty-third programme featuring thirteen artists from sound, installation and dance disciplines at Bilpin International Ground for Creative Initiatives (Bigci) in February 2016. As a current member of Splinter Orchestra she recently did a recording project at Lake Mungo and performed with them for Tectonics at Adelaide Festival of the Arts, 2016.