To all OLLI members, their families and everyone in our lives — happy and healthy New Year! The turmoil around us is a reminder that we should honor and respect cultural and religious diversity. In the tragedy in Paris, human lives were taken out of religious intolorance. Nohemi Gonzalez, a CSULB Design Dept. student, was murdered. An on-campus vigil was held in her honor on November 14, attended by some two thousand students and friends.
Last semester OLLI registered 168 new students. Kim Steinhart gave a lecture on Sea Otters. The Long Beach Trauma Recovery Center explained traumas that may occur in our lives and what we can do about them. Representatives of the Mobül store (on Bellflower Blvd.) gave a presentation on devices that can help seniors in everyday living. Tips included getting out of chairs and improving your balance.
Not for everyone, but attracting a “biker crowd” is the OLLI bicycle riding group. Ask about joining the fun!
During the holidays, Muriel Pendleton’s recorder class entertained patrons at three local libraries
(El Dorado, Los Altos, and Burnett) with an hour-long program of Baroque recorder holiday music. The Ukulele class is preparing for a show in February, and our OLLI Chorus sang holiday music for the residents at Crofton Manor and Bixby Towers. Many of our classes get involved with community outreach.
Many thanks to late member Ralph Staunton
for his generous legacy
donation to OLLI for our continued success.
Dr. Paulino Lim has been recognized for his development of Philippine literature and continues to offer his expertise to OLLI members too!
A New-Member reception was held November 16. It was a huge success and provided an orientation about OLLI, it’s history, and the opportunities it provides. Another is planned for May. (See page 6 for story) Yours truly flew to New York to see daughter (Camryn Manheim) star in a Broadway musical Spring Awaking; it was a magnificent experience.
Be thankful for each new challenge, for it builds strength and character. Be thankful for your mistakes for they teach you valuable lessons. Be thankful when you don’t know something, for it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Have a wonderful
semester and do something delicious.
The Spring Zen Meditation class will be taught by an exceptionally well-qualified young man, the Reverend Yukinori Yokoyama. This interview was conducted in a Japanese temple in Long Beach.
Yukinori Gyokei Yokoyama was born thirty-seven years ago in Shinshiro, a small village in Japan. Growing up in a very religious family, he was ordained at the age of ten. His father was a bishop of a seven-hundred -year-old temple in Japan. When Yokoyama was about twenty years old, his father died. Yokoyama took his place on the City Council and became its youngest council member. Because being a bishop is a bloodline role in the Japanese culture, at his father’s death Yokoyama took over his father’s positions as minister and bishop.
Some priests in the temple were not very happy that Yokoyama became a bishop at such a young age. Because of the resulting controversy, Yokoyama stayed at this post for only a short time. During this period, he fell in love with a Canadian woman living in Japan and married her. Because temple membership in Japan has been declining, Yokoyama wanted to create a renewed urgency of interest through a new approach to Buddhism. Deciding that he could not accomplish this in Japan, he moved to Canada because he wanted to become part of the North American Buddhist communities. After a few years in Canada, he found a position at a Long Beach temple where they wanted a minister who spoke Japanese as a primary language and English as a secondary.
The class at OLLI will consist of lectures, scriptures of the Zen masters, and meditation. Yokoyama hopes that students will learn that Zen Buddhism is a method that allows them to look at issues with open mindedness, without judgment or pre-judgment, and not as a matter of black and white. Incorporating these practices of Zen Buddhism into daily life can result in a greater inner peace.