I have been a member for a little while but haven't posted anything! I am also a member of dharma wheel, my background is more in Tibetan Vajrayana buddhism but I am looking for books/websites which can introduce me more to the teachings of Theravadin buddhism. Personally I became interested in meditation when i was 12 years old although I was taught by the christian spiritualist church, although you may find interestingly that their methods aren't too different from Buddhist meditation. I formally became buddhist three years ago but I was a regular attender at the local shrine room all throughout my university career. I am currently hoping to ordain although I am currently researching as many buddhist traditions as possible to achieve balance I guess. Academically I studied medicine/neuroscience and pharmacology and so am quite sympathetic to the supposed benefits of practice, interestingly people who have a spiritual practice live longer and recover from illness much better than those who do not - so keep up your good work!
I recently started going to a local buddhist group where most of the members are interested in the thai forest tradition, so I am completely out my depth which can only be a good thing and I have to say I am impressed, as they did a 13 week introductory course to 'buddhism' and I was amazed at the turnout.
I am just completing athree year home study course but that was ran by a Tibetan monastery, I would interested if there were any similiar courses which people could recommend for the thervadin tradition. I am also reading 'In the Buddhas Words', I have to admit though I am finding it a bit dry and struggling with it. when at medical school my main interest was psychiatry and care of the dying and this is something I would like to continue with from a dharma perspective upon ordaining. I have dreams of working in a hospice but that all is a pipe dream - so I am just muddling through as best I can. i am looking forward to hearing from you all and your words of advice.