Hi, I'm James, I'm pretty tall. Not a giant, but hey, a username has to be catchy.
I am here fleeing the Great E-sangha Crash of '09.
I hope they'll be up and running again soon, but it had the benefit of encouraging me to search for other forums, and thus I am here. I have met some of you on e-sangha already. I'm Tall Jamie over there.
Single white male, 32.
Job: Wildlife guide.
Location: Dunedin, New Zealand.
Education: BA, majoring in Analytic Philosophy.
The son of a Presbyterian Minister, I approached Buddhism from a technique perspective. I did a Vipassana course with Goenka and found the method really useful. I wasn't interested in Buddhism at all, just meditation for stress-relief.
But then reading more about meditation, I eventually picked up some Buddhist books and to my Total! Surprise! found them completely logical.
I've had a harder time coming to terms with some of the other Buddhist traditions I have sampled, so returning to a Theravadan environment feels like a breath of fresh, clean air. Wonderful!
Theravada is where I have felt most at home. So sensible, so logical.
I've now done four or five retreats in Vipassana and Insight traditions, I've got a daily 1 ½ hour meditation practise, and I'm just beginning to get into reading actual suttas rather than just other people's interpretations of them.
Recently I've moved to an organic-farm-commune-park place, where I live by myself in a home-made shack (ooh, shades of the Dharma Bums, I only just realised that just then) with no electricity or running water, and a composting toilet.
I work only 30 hours a week, (and not at all in winter) so I have lots of time for meditation and study and practising mindful living.
Next winter I plan to travel to Burma (or is it Myanmar these days? Which is the most democratic name?) to do some long meditation courses. I'll also spend a month or two serving and sitting at my local Vipassana centre here in NZ.
So, Hi! I look forward to reading and learning.
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.