True Torch of Understanding By Anneke Brinkerink
With great sadness, the Dutch Sangha learned of the sudden passing away of Pauline Asthita Vegting on Ascension Day, 21 May 1998. She was 65 years old. A Buddhist ceremony in celebration of Pauline's life was led by Nico Tydeman. Participants came from many Buddhist groups-Maha Karuna Ch'an, de Noorder Poort, Tiltenberg, Kanzeon Sangha, Buddhist Broadcast, Dutch Sangha of the Order of Interbeing, Vipassana, from the interreligious movement, and from students in Pauline's newly founded center, "The Rainbow Sangha," located in Stone Bridge.
Pauline had been planning many activities for the autumn in her new Dharma and meditation center. In addition to the intensive practice of Vipassana and Zen, she had prepared classes on the deepening of the Heart Sutra and on themes such as suffering, enlightenment, and reincarnation.
After a full life, Pauline was following more and more the voice of her heart, and was deepening her understanding of Buddhism. She was ordained into the Order of Interbeing in September 1996 and received the name "True Torch of Understanding." Pauline was a real teacher, who had developed an eclectic method from her Buddhist wanderings.
On the occasion of her recent 65th birthday, I sent Pauline the words of Confucius: When I was fifteen, I dedicated myself to study, When I was thirty, I began to live, When I was forty, I made my choice, When I was fifty, I was aware of the fate the heavens had destined to me, When I was sixty, I followed what I heard, When I was sixty-five, I followed the voice of my heart and had no need of norms anymore. Pauline answered me: "This is exactly so." Happy Continuation, Pauline.
Anneke Brinkerink, True Compassionate Nature, practices with the Sunflower Sangha in Holland.