Camelford Ch’an Week Retreat (North Cornwall)

Numbers vary dramatically, but as we are not a commercial enterprise, this is of no interest. There is always a strong inner core that keeps the teachings of Master Xu Yun (1840-1959) alive in the UK. We have been asked to Hong Kong and China in recent years, and these are invitations we intend to honour in the near future. Our last Ch’an Week Retreat (in the Sai Kung area) of Hong Kong, attracted over 50 participants in 1999, and we had to abandon the building and sit in the beautiful countryside.

The Bourgeois State and Feminism

Bourgeois feminism is very different. This is the feminism of the middle class, and already socially privileged women. These women, as wives of the rich and famous, have had historically a remarkable amount of leisure time and relative freedom compared to their working class counter-parts. This apparent ‘freedom’ exists only within the framework of an unquestionable bourgeois patriarchy. It is freedom at a cost and the cost is humanity living free of oppression. Middle class women have had access to a greater array of educational facilities, be they teachers, books, or academic instruction. Middle class women fought for, and finally secured the vote because their privileged socio-economic conditions allowed them the insight to see partly beyond their own negative conditioning. Bourgeois feminism is nothing more than the exercise of political compromise as whatever concessions are granted to a middle class woman, they can not be allowed to directly challenge or alter the essential framework of the bourgeois exploitative state. Exploitation and class difference must be allowed to continue unopposed, in the old way.