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Fundamental Premise of the Threefold Lotus Kwoon

  1. We hold true that Life in all its aspects from human to universe, blade of grass to empty space, is a precious event to be revered and taken personally
  2. To create a peaceful, respectful, and mindful existence begins with individuals
  3. When a person is enlightened to their own possibilities, that person's mind is filled with greater depth of understanding of the preciousness of life and develops greater compassion and the ability to create value creating relationships
  4. Through the promotion and development of value creating relationships, better government is created
  5. Through better government, a more responsible view of the world and Life is promoted.
  6. Through the teaching and practice of the Arts, the TLK seeks to develop value creating individuals.

TLK Life Skills & Arts Center Program Outline

You don't have to be a Buddhist to be a painter or sculptor. It is not necessary for you to be a Martial Artist in order to understand Buddhism. Being an Artist does not make you a Martial Artist. But the opportunity to "cross-polinate" all these is very powerful. To be a Martial Artist is to have a deep appreciation of movement, balance, and expression. To be an artist is to have a keenly discerning eye, a deep appreciation of form, balance, and expression. To be a Buddhist is to have a dedicated awareness and a deep appreciation for life, equanimity, and expression. You may chose only one path among these, and yet you will learn all three.

  1. Arts Retreat
  2. Health and Asian Arts
  3. Martial training
  4. Scholastic Achievement

Art Retreat or Residencies
The Kwoon is located on 15 acres of rolling hills with large trees, meadows, and a 3-acre pond. Artists can come to stay in a private studio to work in solace, and have the opportunity to interact with other artists and teachers to develop their work in a beautiful environment. Stays can be arranged by the day, week, or month.

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Health and Asian Arts
Classes in Taijiquan, Qigong, and other methodologies offer low to high impact activities for focused and general health training. These classes take place outdoors and indoors to take full advantage of the surroundings and are open to all ages and levels of participation. Available to any who stay at the Kwoon as part of their stay and also as “walk-in” admission to all who are interested.

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Martial training
Focused classes are available to local students as well as quests for the development of Martial skills for Self-Defense or certificate driven achievements in martial training. Classes are taught in all environments on the Kwoon grounds.

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Scholastic Achievement
For those seeking out a more scheduled and regular learning environment, complete access to all facets of the Kwoon can be organized as follows:

A Typical Day

    (this is a framework for our goals and future buildings not yet completed)

Children, Young Adults, Adults, and Seniors all arrive at the Kwoon in the large "great room". Each is dressed appropriate to the activities they will be participating in later that day. Each person stands at the entry to the great room just before entering and offers a small bow and says Namumyohorengekyo. Then each person removes their shoes and enters the room to sit in prearranges rows across the front of the room and continue in successive rows until the appointed attendance time is reached. No late arrivals. Each day, a short speech or teaching is offered to the group after which the group is separated into smaller groups sent off to participate in their area of study with a master "Facilitator". As taught by Tsunesaburo Makiguchi the "teacher" is correctly trained and behaves as a co-inquisitor with the student therefore acting as facilitator in method, discovery, and so on.

The Classroom

The TLK Classroom consists of the entire 15-acre parcel we have acquired with a mixture of trees, large pond and pasture. A currently harvested sustaining organic garden area, future greenhouses. Hydroponics and many other opportunities will exist here. There is also the large "box" type building and workshops as well as specialty buildings for studies requiring equipment and so on. The goal here is to maximize the use of the entire grounds and buildings for all studies. Integrating the student experience of study, with practice, application, and abstraction. The entire learning experience then becomes infused with potential and relation to daily activities and life.

Example study areas

A group (class) is directed after the morning erudition to assemble at the North end of the pond where they will meet up with Master Patrick. Master Patrick welcomes the group and then proceeds with a short lecture while leading the group through the trees to a clearing next to a large art studio building. Master Patrick then instructs the group to get their various equipment and supplies from the building and re assemble in the clearing where they will be given today’s tasks. Another group is directed to stand in rows of seven across and at 8-foot intervals at the rear of the great room. After all the other groups have been assigned their various locations, the group standing at the back of the great room is addressed by Sifu Sylvain. Sifu Sylvain may then instruct the group to begin a repetitive physical task or to simply jog one lap around the 15-acre Kwoon grounds and return to their standing positions. This will begin the Martial Arts training class. Meanwhile, master James is leading a group in the garden area in a session of Taijiquan.

While Sifu Sylvain's MA class is jogging around the perimeter of the grounds they can see master James and his class practicing forms in the garden area, they also spy the Art students hiking through the woods, and they may also observe master Bart as he leads a group of environmental Art experimentalists making various installations of interactive projects to harvest food, create sculpture, or music, or reclaim resources from organic materials and native plants. All this the MA class will witness as they make their way back to the great room where they will be exploring and expanding the limits of their bodies, mind and inner creative core. Many other areas of study can be "taught" in this way. As these are only a few examples it may be important also to note that this is just one example of one day in only a few classes. Each class is expected to proceed in alternate ways and ever more diverse ways as the course continues. Some days are filled with rigorous study, other days see pairing of students within a class or pairings across discipline boundaries to accomplish projects. In all endeavors the TLK goal of growing individual reward from accomplishment, discovery, and surmounting challenges is the paradigm of education in a "living" classroom. Our education, at all levels and ages, is critical to Our future, the future of all living things, and the ultimate appreciation, respect, and fulfillment of life well lived depends solely on our ability to be self-motivated, fearlessly inquisitive, and secure in our own reward for being so.

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