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Buddha Festival

The Ann Ree Colton Foundation of Niscience Buddha Festival

was held in the Niscience garden on Saturday, April 24, 2021. This sacred annual event includes the sharing of Buddha's dharma teachings, Pleasance movements to Buddha's words, a dharma talk, and the sharing of haiku written by attendees.

The following is the Dharma talk presented by Enys Miller for this year's

Festival on the Manipura (Solar Plexus) Chakra:

Manipura: City of Jewels

Wherever you look, there is a rushing and struggling, and an eager pursuit of pleasure. There is a panic flight from pain and death, and hot are the flames of burning desires. The world is vanity fair, full of changes and transformations. All is Samsara.

Is there nothing permanent in the world? Is there in the universal turmoil no resting-place where our troubled heart can find peace? Is there nothing everlasting?

Oh, that we could have cessation of anxiety, that our burning desires would be extinguished! When shall the mind become tranquil and composed? -Buddha

The solar-plexus chakra is the center for desire; it is the central heart of the desire-system and emotional body. The Lord Buddha came to teach men of the desireless life; for this, he gave the Eightfold Path. Each petal of the solar-plexus chakra – of which there are eight – is a balancing scale for polarization, whereby man’s desire is measured. By mastering the eight steps of initiation, one attains the desireless nature. To dwell upon the eight steps of initiation through the third-chakra path is to be in alignment with the Lord Buddha, who is in command of the First Heaven. -Ann Ree Colton

As the great center of desire, Manipura is deeply correlated to the mastery of and transcendence of samsara. The great noble Truths of Buddha delineate the existence of suffering, the cause of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the fourth: the eightfold path that leads to the cessation of suffering. In our inward parts we are correlated to this struggle. Kundalini is a rod of will. We must exert the effort to align ourselves with a higher and more selfless good. Central to this accomplishment is the assessing of desire which is central to the Manipura chakra.

To live in the Edenic morality aeonic-grace, one must release tension-laden desires to the Will of God.

Natural or native intelligence can be achieved only by the assessing of true desire.

The primordial inward-parts laws, or chakra-protecting laws, are photographed and sealed in to the third chakra….These laws are primordial, Edenic morality laws preserving the virginal and essential purity in man. -Ann Ree Colton

Pleasance movements performed by Justinia Chavira

Eden is a garden. The Niscience Buddha Festival symbolically portrays the inward primordial garden of Manipura. It is deeply symbolic that for years we have come into the Niscience garden for the Buddha Festival at Wesak and there we have witnessed the Pleasance – a symbolic dance depicting each step of the eight-fold path as represented in the petals of the Manipura lotus. The reader, in essence, expounds the Dharma as the lotus moves, teaches, opens, and closes before our eyes, accompanied by the sounds, sights, and loveliness of the garden. Right views, right aspirations, right speech, right actions, right living, right exertion, right recollection, right meditation – all are represented. And the solar plexus chakra, or Manipura is central to this process. It is part of why we love the Buddha Festival so much. It is a living myth, a part of our own primordial inward parts and being.

I will put my law in their inward parts… - Jeremiah (31:33)

It is significant that Manipura correlates to the Edenic laws, for the Adam and Eve story also presents us with themes of a garden, of purity, desire and temptation, primordial innocence, nakedness before God.

Manipura means “city of jewels”“lustrous, resplendent gem.” Manipura is generously endowed with spiritual gifts. Ann Ree calls the solar plexus, a “power chakra” in the company of the two other lower chakras which are also “power chakras.” The chakras above the waist being “transcendental chakras.”

As an aside, the name, Glendale (the location of our festival and Foundation headquarters), also means jewel city. Glendale is the city where our beloved Teachers shared their Dharma instruction and where we continue to do so today. And here we are each year, enacting and learning something of Manipura’s dance and essence in the garden by the Buddha pool, symbolic of the Buddha’s deep inward tranquility and reflection.

The negative aspects of the third chakra or solar plexus are sloth, greed, egotism, manipulating, taking. The highest aspects of this chakra are giving, magnanimity, healing magnetism. The transcended aspect of this chakra is the healing action of the white light, which is of the purest prana. -Ann Ree Colton

The element (or tattva) of Manipura is fire – fire correlates to the theme of desire. Heated desire is a destroyer. The sense correlating to the solar plexus chakra is sight and it relates to greater insight or honest self-seeing, as well as many aspects of oversight or stewardship. And Ann Ree tells us that in its high side Manipura gathers all the yin and yang powers of assessment, experience, and learning from the two lower chakras and transmutes them into a great archive of supersensible perception. This is a great spiritual power. Manipura also works with preservation. Great ages and civilizations have been established by egos who brought with them Manipura powers and gifts of wisdom, manifestation, and preservation.

Ann Ree tells us “The lion initiate has mastered the solar plexus.” Buddha himself was represented by the lion. He was called “The Lion of the Shakya ” (Shakya refers to his clan or family line). He is the great Master of the solar plexus and His speech was called the “lion’s speech.” A lion roars with the resonance of the Good Law or Dharma. The mythological characters of Azlan of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and Mufasa of the Lion King, represent those with the authority, mastery, and building powers of Manipura.

(Manipura Chakra artwork by Enys Miller)

Likewise, Ann Ree Colton was a solar initiate, a lioness, born in the sign of the sun or Leo. She too was a builder and a preserver. Hers was the roar of Eternal Truth in her archetypal logos. The Lion is the symbol of courage; a lion eats the meat of deeper truth; a lion symbolizes a great initiate, a regent of compassion, authorized to be a giver of the vajra of truth.

The solar plexus chakra is the lion, the heart chakra is the lamb. We need them both. They are dependent upon each other. The power and courage of sacrificial love within the Lamb is what dignifies, magnifies, and purifies the great strengths within the Lion of Manipura.

The Lion Initiate has mastered the solar plexus. The Lamb Initiate has mastered the heart. When these two can lie down in the pasture together as blended, harmless vehicles for God, His Kingdom is at hand, and Intuition within the heart wears her mighty crown. -Ann Ree Colton

Ann Ree Colton tells us that the solar plexus has an “astute multidimensional intelligence.” In the solar plexus primal instinct becomes a supersensible state of perception. Manipura offers to us the power of disclosure as to lifetimes of cause and effect in karma. This is part of the supersensible state of the senses that is developed in the solar plexus. This is part of what it means in the 8-fold path to attain right comprehension – we can look at our past and our present and see it truthfully, evenly.

In the solar-plexus chakra, the conceptualizing primal instinct is changed to the quality of perception…. disclosing the cause and effect in karma.

-Ann Ree Colton

Such is profound insight – the gift of sight in the solar plexus.

There are psychological and mythological dimensions within every chakra. And we have touched upon the Edenic side of Manipura, its relationship to the Garden of Eden story. For we have all partaken of many forbidden fruits from the tree of knowledge of good and evil and must now assess with greater clarity in the light and pranic power of sight and magnification within the Manipura.

Ann Ree calls Manipura our “primitive psychic brain.” Before it may become the city of jewels to which we aspire, we must master the current of anxiety that predominates in the counterclockwise movements of the lower chakras, the burden of samsara of which the Buddha speaks.

The primitive psychic brain and the psychic eye of the solar plexus contain all of the fear and apprehensive memories one has retained from the instinctual nature. In the solar plexus, the primal forces are still alive and active, acting as instinctual reflexes from things fearful or unknown.

Anxiety is of raw and dark electricity. Faith is the eternal positive.

All men have inherited this frenzied current of guilt laden anxiety.

Fear has trillions of faces.

Fear is the enemy of timelessness.

The most obsessing fear becomes the adversary, which is repictured again and again upon the solar plexus until mastery within the superconscious will has come. -Ann Ree Colton

Oh, that we could have cessation of anxiety, that our burning desires would be extinguished! When shall the mind become tranquil and composed? -Buddha

When I think of Ann Ree Colton, I can see the Manipura in her: as healing power, as twinkling-of-an-eye healings and smiles, as poise, as drawing on strengths that are of both earthly and heavenly origins. Reading and studying Ann Ree’s chapter on the Solar Plexus chakra from Kundalini West brought renewed and deepened awe and respect for our beloved Teacher. In the introduction to her book, Kundalini West, she wrote:

Under the loving tutelage of my Maha-Deva, or inward Master, I familiarized myself with the Kundalini techniques. Step by step, with the assistance of the Angels and the Masters, I was initiated into the fire of Kundalini. Purged and tried in Kundalini’s fire, I obtained the powers and gifts of my soul which are presently active. These powers were earned by grace, effort, and suffering. -Ann Ree Colton

Manipura is a sitting and walking disciple, a householder with a mind in Cosmos – and a day job also. Manipura is the lion that will roar, that will rule her kingdom with dignity and justice, that will earn and return respect, that will be poised in the Dharma Eye of the higher senses and the soul. That will be poised as a regent of trust, and in delivery of fairness and understanding. Ann Ree shares these beautiful words that relate to the initiation within the Manipura:

If you are concerned, pray to move beyond the boundary line drawn by anxiety. A greater circumference awaits you, whereby the anxious past will be but a miasma, a drifting cloud. -Ann Ree Colton

A greater circumference awaits us all. A disc of golden truth and perfection, a mighty city of God when wed with the powers of the soul, the lion, and the lamb. Manipura, a primordial garden of fragrant grace.

Next to the soul’s medallion in man’s present state of evolvement, the solar plexus is the most vital and contributing energy instrument of consciousness.

In both the soul and human life, the third-chakra light is the vital instrument for man’s consciousness as an exploring and creating instrument for God. -Ann Ree Colton

Persevere in thy quest and thou shalt find what thou seekest. Pursue thy aim unswervingly and thou shalt gain the prize. Struggle earnestly and thou shalt conquer. -Buddha

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