North County Monastery Goes Green

A bell begins each day, with meditation a part of every moment at Deer Park Monastery.

"Our teaching here at the monastery has a lot to do with the mindfulness practice, the practice of being aware of what we're doing and how we're doing it," said Brother Pajp Thanh.

That means being aware of their place in the environment.

"We use the example of the bee. It takes the pollen but it doesn't disturb the beauty of the flower. So, that's our practice to live on the earth in such a way that we only take what we need and we don't disturb the rest," said Brother Phap Luu.

In order to reduce their own pollution, the nuns and monks at Deer Park have installed a 66-kilowatt solar panel array.

"This is basically one of the steps we are taking to be more in harmony with our environment," said Luu.

The $535,000 array will pay for itself over time.

The monastery has also invested in used cars.

"We're keeping the car away from the junk pile and we're reusing our used vegetable oil," said Thanh.

It is all part of a commitment to live in harmony with Mother Earth.

"That is how we live on this planet and that is how we want to live together with this planet," said Luu.

It is a practice that grows in popularity as the energy prices rise along with the costs to the environment.

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