Conor Rush Death, Obituary – Conor was a part of the Site Team, but over the course of the last three years, he also made significant contributions toward the building of the temple. In particular, he worked on the sok shying, also referred to as the life force tree, which is part of the primary roof decorations and will be incorporated into each of the statues. You can recognize it because it has a yin and yang symbol on its trunk.
Conor and Leon took the first phase of these from a cherry tree that was located at Dzogchen Beara in order to fulfill the requirements of Tibetan geomancy. Throughout the entirety of the procedure, Lama Yonten provided instruction to them through a video call on WhatsApp. The second phase was inspired by a tree in Tralee that Ger had planted when he was younger and it served as its inspiration. Conor, Ger, and Yonathan all worked together to cut the sok shying out of that tree so that it could be used for the primary statues.
Conor then took charge of the situation and brought them to a local woodworker named Marc Jeisy, who trimmed them all down to size and tapered them in accordance with the tradition prior to carving them.
Kiln drying them out in time for the event was Conor’s top priority, so he took them to a kiln in Galway. It was the only option available to us given that no other kiln in Ireland would accept them. They exclusively deal in very large quantities of wood in the normal course of their business.
After they had been allowed to dry, some of them were taken to Lerab Ling, where Nelly would carve them, Lama Yonten would paint them, and many sacred relics would be placed on them. These are now kept within the three primary roof ornaments, where they can continue to bestow their blessings upon the structure while also being protected from the elements.
A short while ago, Conor initiated the process of carving the sok shying for the three primary statues. Leon will continue the carving that Conor started, and as a result, the work that Conor did will be incorporated into the statues of the Buddha, Guru Rinpoche, and Tara. This will be done as a way to honor the tremendous effort that Conor put forth to bring about the fruition of the life force trees.
In addition, Conor had three young oak trees in the polly-tunnel at Dzogchen Beara, and in his honor, we are going to replant those trees to the west of the temple.