Archive for the 'Alumni' Category

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “The Things We Love”

Dear Alumni

With just a handful of staff and mature students present amidst the tranquil summer days at Brockwood, we are steadily working in preparation for your visit in August. The excitement is slowly building up as we allocate rooms, count out all the teaspoons, make plans for where the sheep will go when the campers arrive, and finalise the programme of events. The gardens are being meticulously pruned and weeded, t-shirts to commemorate our 45 years are being printed, DJ’s are being sought and reminders are sent out for gathering items for the auction and workshops. We have also been busy capturing the scenes we love at Brockwood and wished to share these with you in reminiscence of the spaces you once roamed and wandered through. Accompanying these images, filmed by current student Ewan Benoit, is a melodious classical piece by Debussy, often played by Alan Rowlands during Sunday Morning Meetings back when I was a student in the 90’s. Here it is performed by Jerome Blanche in a live recording.

Enjoy this trip down memory lane and see if you can notice the changes in the landscape.

Happy Summer,

Fazila Benoit
Reunion Coordinator

Reunion Website: reunion.brockwood.org.uk

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “Send us your Postcard”

Dear Alumni

I wonder when was the last time you sent, or received, a postcard? Perhaps you have a couple stuck to your fridge or cupboard doors right now. The photograph of an exotic setting, the foreign post-mark and stamp, and the sunny message scribbled in a familiar hand on the back, make this small colourful gift, survivor of the long journey to your letterbox, not so easily forgotten or ignored as an email or a text.

We would like to encourage as many alumni as possible – attending or not attending the Reunion – to send us a postcard in the coming weeks before 21st August. You are spread around the world and in anticipation of the Reunion, we are hoping to gather images and messages that reflect our global community and the thoughts we wish to share with one-another. We will post these on the Reunion website before the event and during the Reunion, they will be on a giant pin-board inside the marquee.

Remember, whether you are attending or not, what is the message you would like to share with everyone (or with just a few) in advance of the Reunion? Send your cards to: Reunion Reflections, Brockwood Park School, Bramdean, Hants, SO24 0LQ, UK. Keep your eye out for the cards on the Reunion website.

Best Wishes

Fazila Benoit
Reunion Coordinator

Reunion post: Send us your Postcard
Reunion website: Alumni Reunion 2014

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “Will you be joining us?”

Will you be joining us?
Dear Alumni

In just 6 weeks’ time we will be welcoming many of you back at Brockwood.
We are receiving new registrations every day, and it is not too late to encourage alumni friends to sign up and join us for the 21st August.

Here is the list of participants so far. As you can see there are alumni attending from each of Brockwood’s 45 years.

Your name will be added to the list at http://reunion.brockwood.org.uk/participants/ once you have registered.

For all registrations visit our reunion website page
http://reunion.brockwood.org.uk/registration/

See you all very soon,

Best Wishes,

Fazila Benoit
Reunion Coordinator

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014: Word Map

Reunion2014

To get the full effect, please click here:

http://reunion.brockwood.org.uk/brockwood-park-school-45th-anniversary-reunion-21-25-august-2014/

First Friends Retreat

From 30 May until 1 June, we held the first ever retreat for registered Friends of Brockwood Park at the Krishnamurti Centre (for more info on how to register, seehttp://friendsofbrockwoodpark.org.uk/). It turned out to be a very inspiring weekend full of meaningful connections.
First Friends Retreat 1
Participants received an in-depth introduction to all four Brockwood departments from the Heads of those departments, with the goal of showing all the work we do. We also watched two extraordinary DVD’s from Saanen 1978 (3rd and 4th talk; seehttps://www.kfoundation.org.uk/acatalog/copy_of_Public_Meetings_in_Saanen__Switzerland__1978.html) and there was an opportunity to participate in dialogues to go deeper into the issues raised.
First Friends Retreat 2
On Saturday afternoon Trustee Mary Cadogan held her audience spellbound while reading from her upcoming memoir on working with Krishnamurti. She painted a vivid portrait of what it was like to work with and be so close to Krishnamurti. In the evening students and staff put on a wonderful concert featuring classical music and songs from the choir.
First Friends Retreat 3

The feedback from participants was wonderful. They loved the opportunity to get to know Brockwood from an insiders point of view and savoured the chance to meet with likeminded others. Based on their feedback and encouragement we have started thinking about the nextFriends of Brockwood Park retreat. To be continued…

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “Participants from 2000 – 2010″

Brockwood 2006

Dear Alumni

Looking at the participants list, we see that the highest number of alumni registered to attend the Reunion are from the decade 2000-2010. Here are some posters(*) that we dug out of the school archives room, that were made during those years. Can you spot yourself?

Keep encouraging your friends from that time to join you!

Best wishes,

Fazila,
Reunion Coordinator

(*) To view the posters, visit the post on the Alumni Reunion 2014 website by clicking on the image or here.

Cherry and the Cook (Update)

In early April a wild duck in the neighbouring village of Cheriton abandoned her smallest chick and left her to die. Our resident cook, Sarai, happened to be on the scene and stepped in and rescued the orphan. She named the chick ‘Cherry’ (from Cheriton).

Cherry is now a little over two months old and has grown into a very healthy looking duck, as can be seen in these photos. During these past two months Sarai showed Cherry where the good ponds were, pointed out places to forage for food, and they went on many daily walks around Brockwood.

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There is still a spectacular difference in size between the two, and Cherry still seems undeterred by this. There is a strong bond between our Cherry and the Cook, but both realize that there will come a time, sooner rather than later, when Cherry will want to fly off and start a life of her own. We can only hope that when that happens, Cherry will still continue to visit Brockwood to see the kind Cook who took her in, perhaps with newly born chicks in tow.

'Cherry' the chick and the Cook2 'Cherry' the chick and the Cook3 'Cherry' the chick and the Cook1 'Cherry' the chick and the Cook4

Surprise encounter during the recent Istanbul riots

During last Saturday’s Istanbul riots, former Brockwood Park School student Daniel Christoffel, who lives and works in Turkey, had to take shelter in an Istanbul coffee shop with three tourists from the other side of the globe. To their great surprise they found they had something in common…

SurpriseEncounterIstanbulRiot(In the photo, from left to right, Varun, Daniel, Prashnant and Kaushal) — at Taksim Gezi Park, ISTANBUL.

“I had a rather unusual encounter the other day, which I thought would be interesting to share with you.

For those who might not remember me, I used to be a student at Brockwood from 2002-2005. Beginning this year I moved to Istanbul for work and I have to say that I’ve never experienced so much noise and distortion ever before.

Anyhow, let’s get to the point. I moved to a lively district in the heart of the city but since it is right in the middle you get a lot of the recent protests as well. Turkey is currently in Turmoil due to the rigid regime of the current government. This Saturday was the anniversary of last year’s Gezi Park protests, where many people have died.

I was out in my neighborhood hanging out at my friend’s shop drinking some coffee and watching the crowds getting more and more excited. You could see the police move slowly down the hill while the protesters yelled and clapped. The police shot a few tear gas capsules but it was still all quite normal. We are used to a little bit of tears in the eyes.

The protests got more and more ugly; the protesters started throwing stones and bottles at the police and suddenly the whole atmosphere collapsed and people panicked and ran down the hill chased by police. As the rubber bullets and tear gas bombs flew next to my friends shop we knew it was time to get in. We locked the doors, and put the shutters down.

We barricaded ourselves into the shop watching the street fires burn higher and higher. We were six friends, one cat and four tourists in the shop, who also ran inside as it became ugly. In total we spent about two hours in the shop trying to escape to the back of the shop as the tear gas came in through every crack.

It was a fun crowd like always and we had plenty of coffee, water and music to have a good time. The tourists turned out to be a group of friends from America who studied together. They were very friendly, but scared at the same time as they are not used to these kind of protests. All of them came from India but mostly grew up in the States.

So we had some talks about Istanbul, Turkey, the US and India and had a good time. As we talked about education they said that three of them went to a small boarding school in India, no one would really know it, in the State of Andhra Pradesh. I did not think much of it as India is big, however when they said Rishi Valley I knew what it was all about.

Is that not the funniest coincidence? A former Brockwood student lives in Istanbul and during a protest meets with four strangers in a shop, which is barricaded, and three of them turn out to also have been to a Krishnamurti school? Now I think, that this was the most curious thing that has happened to me this year and somehow there must be a meaning behind all of this… Krishnamurti is everywhere 

More importantly, these encounters show one how small this world really is and how small all of our problems really are. Once back in the open world, led by greed and power, the need to achieve something becomes ever so important. But realizing how small we actually are makes me realize how unimportant most of the thoughts are, also.

I wish you all the best and hope that this little encounter inspires some as much as me.

All the best, Daniel Christoffel”

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “To look at everything…”

J. Krishnamurti
Meditation is a state of mind which looks at everything with complete attention, totally, not just parts of it. And no one can teach you how to be attentive. If any system teaches you how to be attentive, then you are attentive to the system and that is not attention. Meditation is one of the greatest arts in life – perhaps the greatest, and one cannot possibly learn it from anybody, that is the beauty of it. It has no technique and therefore no authority. When you learn about yourself, watch yourself, watch the way you walk, how you eat, what you say, the gossip, the hate, the jealousy – if you are aware of all that in yourself, without any choice, that is part of meditation.

J. Krishnamurti – Freedom from the Known

Click on the image or here to view the post in the Alumni Reunion website.

Brockwood Alumni Reunion 21-25 August 2014 & “What was your background like?”

In the midst of preparations for the Reunion, among the questions, the planning and the deliberating of practical organisation, we pause to remind ourselves of what underlies this event. The Reunion is fun, it is joyous to see friends, to catch up, to hang out and relax, but we may need to be reminded of what the essence is behind the existence of the school and how that continues to unfold and have relevance in our lives.

The Krishnamurti Foundation Trust at Brockwood have released several videos of Krishnamurti on Youtube to help disseminate and make his work easily accessible to all. With regard to the upcoming event, we would like to share with you a collection of videos of Krishnamurti in conversation with Brockwood staff and students during his annual visits to the school. Perhaps you were part of these seminars? Maybe you lived at Brockwood during this time? The playlists we include here took place at Brockwood between 1978 and 1985.

Brockwood Park – Conversations with Staff and Students
Brockwood Park 1978 – Seminars
Brockwood Park 1979 – Seminars

You can watch more videos on the KFT YouTube Channel.