From the Editor’s Desk
The more things change …
So here we have a picture of our spiritual director Lama Zopa Rinpoche reading Mandala back in April 1991. That was then. This is now. But somehow, the more things change the more they stay the same. Such incarnations Mandala has been through. It started back in October 1987 as The Blissful Rays of the Mandala, published out of Nepal. Over the next few years it evolved into a popular bi-annual broadsheet under a series of devoted editors – Harvey Horrocks, Ven. Elly van der Plas, Carleen Gonder, Ven. Karen Gudmundsson, Ven. Kaye Miner.
From 1995 to 2000, under the creative energetic care of Ven. Robina Courtin, it was a six-issues-a-year magazine full of FPMT and center-specific news, which appealed enormously to members but had less impact on newsstands.
Then from March 2001 it was produced quarterly as a mainstream glossy magazine, packaged appealingly so it would attract new readers browsing in bookshops and at news agencies. This version certainly attracted a lot of interest and comment, and the Reader Survey earlier this year was enlightening to say the least. Some loved it. Some did not.
Now it is entering a new phase, and trying to please everyone is not on the agenda. Making its content as relevant and interesting as possible for students and practitioners is the priority. So, too, is saving money which explains why this issue looks like it does. It is not only cheaper to produce, it is also cheaper for you to buy.
But so many people have told us how anxious they are to read teachings, and practice advice, and news of what is happening in the Tibetan Buddhist world, that we feel confident that once you start to read it, you will recognize its value despite the less glossy presentation.
As a big thank you for the faith people are showing in our continuing Mandala at all, and not closing it down as some rumors would have it, we are extending all current and recent subscriptions at the old rate for two more issues as a bonus. And if enough people stay with us, or join us as new subscribers, we plan to become bi-monthly in 2004, that is six issues a year. But to do any of this, we need subscriptions as well as donor support. It is the only way for Mandala to continue in the future. Lama Zopa Rinpoche and the board of directors are behind it. Please join them.
A special thanks to Jaffa Elias, Mandala’s Deputy Editor and Photo Editor, whose talents and service over the past eight years made a significant contribution to Mandala and FPMT. We wish her well in her future career.
Yours in the Dharma