A Long Way from Home
(Posted by Pastor Seng Piow)
Pastor Antoinette Kass first came to Malaysia all the way from half a globe away – Luxembourg to meet His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche in 2011, after getting know and learning Dharma from Rinpoche just from online resources (Youtube, blog, Facebook…). She has always been spiritual and had visited places like Findhorn in search of spirituality. On the first meeting, Rinpoche had a nice chat with her and presented her a Vajrayogini statue to encourage her in the Dharma path.
She did not have personal contact with Rinpoche after that, and yet from that single meeting of just one hour and her promise to Rinpoche to do more Dharma, she has been keeping her promise and is very consistent about it. Since then, she has been coming back to Malaysia yearly to volunteer and learn in Kechara (most of the time did not have the opportunity to meet Rinpoche), and lately made plans to relocate to Malaysia so that she can pursue her Dharma aspirations full-time.
She is from Luxembourg, one of the countries furthest away from Malaysia, she is not super rich, she is not familiar with Asia at all having lived in Europe all her life, she has not a single family member nor friend here, yet just for Dharma and her trust in guru Tsem Rinpoche, she has the courage to go through all the “obstacles” to be near her guru and Dharma.
She has to arrange the logistics herself in relocating, she has to get a car herself so that she can move around without depending on others, no one help her financially, she receives no stipend from Kechara, over the past 4 years she met Tsem Rinpoche personally less than 10 times, in total spent less than 24 hours with Rinpoche, yet it is enough for her to uproot herself from her comfort zone and engage in the path of Dharma for the rest of her life.
Just one month ago, Tsem Rinpoche went to Kechara Forest Retreat (KFR) and was going around for photo-shoot and suddenly thought of Antoinette who was also there, so Rinpoche called her along, went around KFR with her and had a chat with her, and encouraged her to go even further and all the way in her Dharma path. And again just from that short meeting and talk, she made up her mind, shaved her head and became ordained as a Buddhist pastor on the holy Wesak Day 2015.
Over the years I have seen numerous students of Rinpoche, many who have the comfort of their home country, received salaries for doing Dharma work, received a lot of gifts and personal care from Rinpoche, received Dharma teachings from Rinpoche for hundreds to thousands of hours, spent personal time with Rinpoche for hundreds to thousands of hours…yet when a little obstacle arose, they dropped everything and left, and some even slander Rinpoche and the organization that had shown nothing but Dharma, kindness and generosity to them all this while.
Antoinette is a shining example of a true Dharma practitioner, who goes all the way just from one meeting with the guru, just from one sentence of advice from the guru.
Thank you Antoinette for being a great inspiration for us Dharma practitioners.
Click here to learn more about Kechara Pastors whom Antoinette is a part of: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=55610
Antoinette teaches the Feldenkrais relaxation method in Kechara Forest Retreat
安托瓦内特•卡斯（以下简称卡斯）来自卢森堡（欧洲西北部的一个小国），她在2011年通过网络得知并向詹杜固仁波切学习佛法，然后前来马来西亚与仁波切 会面。卡斯热衷于追求精神探索，经常到有灵性的地方如英国的Findhorn去。在那一次会面中，仁波切送她一尊金刚瑜伽母圣像以鼓励她的灵修。此后，仁 波切没有再和她联系，但卡斯一诺千金，每年必定前来马来西亚参加克切拉团体的佛法活动，虽然大多数时候都没有机会再见到仁波切。
近年来，卡斯甚至下决心搬到马来西亚长住，好让自己能够更接近上师和全职从事佛法事业。这期间，她必须处理很多搬家的琐碎事情（从欧洲搬到半个地球之远的 马来西亚不是件容易的事），她必须自己买车，她不是很富有，没有人在经济上资助她，她没有领取任何津贴，她一辈子住在欧洲，根本不熟悉亚洲文化，她在这里 举目无亲，也没有朋友，但她还是一一克服了这些“障碍”。就因为那仅仅一次与上师的会面，和上师一句鼓励的话，就足以让她放弃自己的“舒适地带”，只身前 来陌生国度追求佛法。前前后后卡斯见仁波切的次数没有超过十次，相处的时间加起来也没有超过二十四小时。
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